The study seeks to investigate the effects of violent television prorgamme on Nigerian youth. The study used the cultivation theory of mass communication. Also, the study adopted the survey method of research methodology using the questionnaire to generate data from the field study. Finally, the study recommended that Parents should play their basic role as home educators to their wards in television watching habit. Creating the right available media materials and with proper instructions or provision of the right cognitive tools for youth to help them resist the effects of negative media influence like violent programme. National film and video censor’s board (NFVCB) should ensure strict rules and regulations on the films and television programmes that contain violence.
1.2 Background to the Study
Television broadcasting projects pictures and words. Egbon (1991:102) defined broadcasting as “means of transmission of electromagnetic energy that is intended to be received by the public.” Expatiating more on broadcasting According to James and Paul say (2009:33) broadcasting is the transmission of radio and television signals to a wide heterogeneous audience”. This means transmission of signal is a way of sending messages from the point of production to receiving points. James and Paul went on to say “this is the systematic dissemination of entertainment, information, and educational programmes to mass audience for simultaneous reception as a group or as individuals in two forms radio which is an audio or sound medium and television which combines sound and pictures audio/visuals.
According to Anatsui and Adekanye (2014) “television is one of the major and significant ways of passing information to the people because it is considered to be the greatest communication mechanism cover designed and operated by man after the internet”.
Television influences people’s perception of life and modify people activities, through various programmes. Anatsui and Adekanye (2014) went further to state that “TV is a compact structure that creates an intimate medium because it brings the world into our homes and it is not more transmission device, but is a medium that brings its audience into a direct relationship with particular values and attitude”.
Charles (1989) cited in Egbon (1982) states that “television transmission began in western Nigeria on October 31, 1959. This service which was initiated by a regional government was not only the first in Nigeria but remains today the oldest in the whole of the Africa continent”. The Western Nigeria television became the first operational television station in Nigeria.
Television programme have been criticized for encouraging violence among Nigeria youth. Many have pitched their criticism on the excessive exposure of violent films and video games on the youths.
According to UNESCO report in Anatusi and Adekaney (2014) “it was discovered that 91 percent of children in 23 countries around the world in 1998, had a TV in their home; not just in the US, Canada and Europe, but also in the Arab States, Latin America, Asia and Africa.” This report shows that more children are exposed to television watching. The content of the television children are watching varies depending on their choice.
However, Anatsui and Adekanye (2014) in the UNESCO report say “more than half (51 percent) of boys living in war zone and high –crime areas choose action heroes as role models, ahead of any other images; and a remarkable 88 percent of the children surveyed could identify the Arnold Schwarzenegger character from the film terminator. UNESCO reported that the Terminator “seems to represent the characteristics that children think are necessary to cope with difficult situations”. Violence films have proven to be the major causes of children aggressive character.
The concept of violence has been defined by (BBC English, 1992) as behavior which is intended to hurt, injures or kill”.
According to Osadebe (2013) “violence goes with force, energy, weapon and destruction”. This violence is as a result of crime-related films youths watch on television. Youth tend to demonstrate the action which they watch on television. The action films most time superimpose on the cultural values and norms of the society. As a result of the violence film shown on television, many youths have indulge in social vices such as cultism, prostitution, stealing, militancy, terrorism etc.
Egbue (2006) opined “sociologically, youth denote a stage of life between childhood and adulthood”. Chigunta (2003:2) “consistent with these requirements, the youth may therefore be a person who is between childhood and 30 years of age.” United Nations and the Commonwealth define youth as people between the ages of 15 and 29-30 years. However in Nigeria the age breaker for youth is between 15 and 30 years. Egbue (2006) defines violence as “always constitute sheer human tragedies”. Violence is human factor that affect all aspects of social life. Egbue (2006) “it is to be found everywhere, among all groups and associations. It is active in urban and rural communities as well as in political, cultural and economics organization.”
Mass media, according to Ojewola (2014), has been incorporated to the life of the generality of human beings. it shows that each day man is being influenced by the activities of the mass media. The world has become a global village where activities of human are interplayed through the mass media either through the radio, television, internet, video games and many other media through which communication and information is exchange for the development of the society.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Over the years in Nigeria, there have been serious concerns over the amount of youth exposure to violent television programmes. This violent exposure to youth has been on the increase as the contents of these television programmes have made youth vulnerable to criminal activities, youth unrest, prostitution, rape, robbery and arm carrying. The media constructs a reality for audience, and so its audience who eventually adopt the violent activities they watch on television.
The resultant effect of violent film on the children is the issue of attention disorder and behavioral problems. There is another angle of youth exposure to television programmes that constitute violence, which is the relationship between youth watching habit of violent television programmes and parental guidance. The present accusation is that parents have little time to supervise their wards on the things they watch on television. This is putting a lot of negative image on television as been a social evil than social good.
1.3 Objective of the Study
This study on the effect of television violence on the Nigeria youth has the following as objectives:
- To determine the exposure of Nigeria youth to violent films.
- To find out the hours youth spend watching television.
- To find out how violent films affect the behavior of youths.
- To determine why youth prefer violent television films.
1.4 Research Questions
1. What is the exposure of Nigeria youth to violent television film?
2. How many hours do youth spend watching television film?
3. How do violent films affect the behaviour of youths?
4. Why do youths prefer violent television film?
1.5 Significance of the Study
This study will be beneficial to Nigerian broadcasting Commission in funding ways to effectively regulate the television content of television stations in Nigeria in a way to stop any violence films capable of encouraging youth to engage in violence. Also, this study is significant to parents, in checking on their ward’s television viewing habit.
Finally, this study will position television stations in producing quality programmes for the youths that will enhance their educational and social development. In all, the society will be a better place.
1.6 Scope of the Study
In examining the effect of violent television, the study will focus on the youth of Abraka community. The choice of Abraka is because of the high population of youth because of its being a University Community. The investigation will cover the television watching habit of youth of Abraka with regards to violence and its consequence on the behaviour of the youth.
1.7 Definition of terms
Youth: People between the ages of 15 and 30 years.
Television: This is broadcasting that transmit information and picture simultaneously to the viewers.
Programme: This is production package of television station for the audience.
Violence: This is a behaviour which is intended to hurt, injure or kill.
Behaviour: The attitude and character of a person displayed to people.