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New and Old Media: Form, Impact, and Accessibility

Engaging unique and creative techniques to modern media is a common aspect, and digital content developers regularly introduce new methods of attracting viewers’ attention. One of the areas in which such innovations are evident is complex TV as an industry that not only creates modern media trends but also has an impact on mass consciousness. According to Zhixin, who cites Friedrich Kittler’s ideas, prioritizing high technology is a natural aspect of media development and a tool for influencing people (9). Compared to classic TV content that had rather entertaining than manipulating function, contemporary shows have more complex forms. Recent innovations are the main factor of the changes that have occurred, and the accessibility of digital content enhances the degree of impact.

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The comparison of TV shows that appeared in different periods is one of the most effective ways to demonstrate the differences in forms and degrees of impact on the public. The Twilight Zone TV series first appeared on American screens in 1959 became a popular show that lasted for five years (The Twilight Zone Matheson). Its creators emphasized the simplicity of content, thereby entertaining the audience and offering interesting episodes. The form of the series was extremely simple: The Twilight Zone of 1959 was an anthology, and each separate episode had an individual story (The Twilight Zone Matheson). The authors of the show did not seek to convey important or socially acute problems. At the same time, the television platform was the only one broadcasting this series.

In 2019, after the show was revived, its creators resorted to distinctive artistic forms (The Twilight Zone Yaitanes). In addition to improved special effects and types of shooting, the authors of the updated show raise topical issues related to modern people, in particular, political, social, and other aspects of life (The Twilight Zone). At the same time, the format of the series has remained the same. Despite the fact that the CBS channel has reserved the right to broadcast, the new The Twilight Zone is available on many other digital platforms, which allows a wide range of viewers to watch the series. This, in turn, opens up great opportunities for the creators to influence the public and attract a large audience. This example reminds me of the concept of active engagement when the viewer is completely immersed in the dynamics of the plot and is susceptible to any influence. High-tech filming complements the overall impact and, as Bleidt et al. state, makes the public believe (30). This is one of the main paradigms of modern media – to engage and influence.

The comparison of old and new media proves that forms, impacts, and accessibility have transformed significantly. Geçer and Serbes consider the Black Mirror phenomenon and the dystopian nature of this television series (1683). The TV show reflects the pressing problems of modern society through the prism of increased influence on the mass consciousness (Black Mirror). This approach characterizes the contemporary complex TV as a whole and proves changes in media messages.

Works Cited

Black Mirror. Directed by Charlie Brooker, Netflix, 2016-present.

Bleidt, Robert L., et al. “Building the World’s Most Complex TV Network: A Test Bed for Broadcasting Immersive and Interactive Audio.” SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal, vol. 126, no. 5, 2017, pp. 26-34.

Geçer, Ekmel, and Hüseyin Serbes. “Judgment, Surveillance and Cultural Desensitization Triangle in TV Series: The Case of Black Mirror.” OPUS. Uluslararası Toplum Araştırmaları Dergisi – International Journal of Society Researches, vol. 8, no. 15, 2018, pp. 1669-1695.

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The Twilight Zone. Directed by Greg Yaitanes, performance by Jordan Peele, CBS, 2019-2020. Directed by Richard Matheson, performance by Rod Serling, CBS, 1959-1964.

Zhixin, C. H. E. “Romanticism as Media Technologies: Friedrich Kittler on “Discourse Networks 1800”.” International Comparative Literature, vol. 3, 2019, p. 9.

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