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Tylermc

Disablity on tv

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Tylermc

What we like too see on tv and what we don't want to see on tv 

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Nesf

I'm confused. Thread title does not match opening post. Is this thread about disability as portrayed on TV, or about what we like to watch on TV in general?

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Tylermc
4 hours ago, Nesf said:

I'm confused. Thread title does not match opening post. Is this thread about disability as portrayed on TV, or about what we like to watch on TV in general?

I'm sorry I got confused it's about disability as portrayed on tv shows 

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Nesf
18 hours ago, Tylermc said:

I'm sorry I got confused it's about disability as portrayed on tv shows 

I find that people with disabilities are often portrayed in a condescending fashion. We need to be aware of disability and the difficulties people with disabilities face, but not have it constantly pointed out to us because that can often create stereotypes and affect the way people think about us in a negative way. People should be defined by who they are, not by their disability. Some programmes about people with disabilities are highly scripted and seek to show extremes of behaviour in order to attract an audience, and I don't like that they should be used as a kind of entertainment to attract more viewers. I like the kind of TV programme where a disabled person might be present, but in a natural, blending in fashion, such as the travel documentary presenter Ade Adepitan. We can see that he is in a wheelchair, he sometimes talks about wheelchair access or the lack of it, but it is contextual information, not the focal point of the documentary and our attention is not constantly being drawn to it in a condescending way. There are two ASD documentary presenters that I like to watch - Chris Packham and Guy Martin. Most people are probably aware that they have Asperger's, but they are defined by the work they do as a naturalist and as an engineer, and not by their ASD. This kind of person makes a good embassador.

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Sanctuary

We could look at how disabled people are shown in dramas and comedies on TV or in news and documentaries. Whatever we look at though the coverage tends to be very narrow and "issue-based". Often the intentions of programme-makers are good ones - to highlight the achievements of disabled people, the problems they face and to criticise their poor treatment. However this tends to lead to them being portrayed as "heroes" triumphing against the odds or as "victims" who are either suffering because of their disability or because of discrimination. While all these things are relevant it's still rare to have disabled people shown simply as people who are not defined by their disability. As Nesf said it's refreshing when a presenter or reporter who happens to be disabled is able to do their job without attention being drawn to their disability. The same is true if a character in a TV drama or comedy has a disability but attention isn't drawn to it, e.g. a shopkeeper who serves people but also happens to be in a wheelchair. It is difficult because quite rightly TV producers want to highlight issues facing disabled people but it's also frustrating when it seems all they can be is "an issue". Often these programmes are made by people who aren't disabled and that might be why they tend to see disability so narrowly.

The same thing happened in the past with ethnic minorities in TV programmes - if they were included it was almost always because the story was about ethnicity in some way. This doesn't happen so much now and so we see many people on TV who are from ethnic minorities but their ethnicity isn't focused on. Sexuality still tends to be covered much like disability so if a character in a TV programme is gay or lesbian a lot of attention is paid to their sexuality and rarely is it a minor detail. Maybe eventually this will change and it is a sign of greater inclusion when a person's gender, ethnicity, ability, disability or sexuality isn't an issue.  

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Aeolienne
On ‎3‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 10:00 AM, Sanctuary said:

As Nesf said it's refreshing when a presenter or reporter who happens to be disabled is able to do their job without attention being drawn to their disability. The same is true if a character in a TV drama or comedy has a disability but attention isn't drawn to it, e.g. a shopkeeper who serves people but also happens to be in a wheelchair.   

Like Penny Pocket in Balamory.

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