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Assignment One-Issues in Factual

Programming
Factual programming is a very tricky field as detailed and accurate
information s requires, you cannot make up anything and put it in a
factual programme, you must have your facts back up by evidence and
sources if you want your product to have a solid fan base, in this essay I
will discuss the various issues affecting factual programme makers.

Accuracy
This is one of the most important issues in Factual programming. If a
documentary maker or news reporter constantly provides the wrong
information and makes mistakes that reporters credibility will be
damaged and will lose viewers as a result of that. All information passed
onto viewers in factual programming must be backed up with evidence,
facts and sources. Accuracy can be very difficult as events may be over
exaggerated by eye witnesses and the news channel might twist and
distort fact is they have some sort of agenda, its understandable why
these 2 things happen, events are over exaggerated to make it sound
exciting to viewers and facts may be distorted for political reasons.

Balance/Impartiality
Factual programmes need to be well balanced if the maker really wants to
put it out there which side is right and which side is wrong, its the only
way for audience to come to a informed opinion. When it comes to film,
you can portray a certain group in a very negative light by only showing
footage that shows them that way, while you make another group look
great with the footage that you capture, its important for the factual
programmer maker to edit the show fairly by not editing, this can be
difficult as some documentary filmmakers will have a agenda so they will
use footage that will help fuel their argument.
Its important through that if you want to make a fair and balanced factual
programme that you dont take sides in the subject matter, you must
remain neutral and not allow their own bias to affect the factual
programme.

Objectivity
Objectivity is whenever the news reporter or presenter of the factual
programme has shown an argument from both sides fairly so that the

audience can see the whole truth, objectivity is whenever you look at a
topic without any emotion towards it which affects your opinion on the
subject matter and come to a fair judgement of the subject.

Subjectivity
Subjectivity is the opposite of objectivity, this s whenever somebodys
judgement of the subject presented in the factual programme is based
upon their own personal feelings rather than facts; the factual programme
has been made by somebody with a clear bas and is trying to manipulate
the audience into believing the same way that they do, this is common
but not exclusive to documentaries based on politics or religion, nor is
their factual programmes that are reasonable when it comes to these
subject matters.

Opinion
An opinion is a personal view that is not based on any demonstrable
evidence. A reporter or presenter shouldnt really give their opinion when
doing a factual programme but it is acceptable for interviewees to give
their opinion on a subject matter, this may lead to arguments as not
everyone has the same opinion. Passive audiences with have their own
opinion on the subject that has been presented to them in the factual
programme after they have taken in all of the facts that have been
presented to them.

Bias
Bias is whenever you have unfair prejudice in favour or against one thing,
person or group compared with another in an unfair way, it is very
important that the factual programme maker does not let their own bias in
the subject effect the final product, they must show both sides to the
argument in a fair and balanced matter. Television channels have been
accused various times of being biased towards certain subject matters, for
example the BBC to the Scottish independence referendum. Bias usually
occurs whenever the argument is one sided and the presenter does not go
into detail on the other side of the argument.

Representation
It is very important to get as many interviews covering a wide range of
people with varying views and opinions on the subject. Representation is
whenever someone or something is brought across in a particular light.
The factual programme maker should always have the intention of giving
a fair representation to the audience, however this hasnt always been the

case as there are many one sided shows that have been produced that
have portrayed certain groups of people in a negative light unfairly, this
can be considered as propaganda designed to brainwash people to
believing a certain thing or behaving a certain way, you can find this in
modern day countries such as North Korea as well as countries such as
Nazi Germany, propaganda s something that a lot of countries are guilty
of, news channels such as fox news have been accused of this.

Access
Access is very similar to representation as it is about those who have the
opportunity to get their story told fairly by the media. There can be many
different reasons why there may be difficult for certain groups to get their
side across, for example, in the 1980s in south Africa it would have been
difficult to get interviews with black living in apartheid because of the
governments stance on foreign journalist, as well as censorship of the
media in that country, for example, the name Nelson Mandela was not
permitted by south African journalist. Thanks to the internet it has become
much easier for people to get their side of the story across.

Privacy
The factual programme maker must respect the privacy of those who they
want to interview. Voices are sometimes distorted and faces are blurred
out to hide the identity of the interviewee if the person wants to keep their
identity secret, this may be very important if their life may be in danger
for releasing certain information. Just like access, the producers may face
legal trouble if they do not respect peoples privacy. You would find these
in various forms of media from news channels to TV documentaries. There
has been in many cases where an invasion of someones privacy has
helped convict that person of illegal activity, this s a very difficult for a
court to deem legal.

Contract with viewer


Contract with the viewer refers to an agreement with the audience. The
viewers of the factual programme expect honesty, therefore the
production companies must make it apparent that it is factual, if the
producers break this contract, their audience will decrease as they have
been giving out false and untrustworthily information making them an
unreliable source for audiences.

Conclusion

Overall there are a lot of issues facing production companies who make
factual programmes, factual programmes are a very tricky genre when
compared to other types of television as accurate information s
demanded, and without it your show may end up being cancelled as a
result of losing its fan base. Addressing the issues discussed above will
ensure that the factual programme will be of a good quality.