There is some contentious stuff out there about high levels of tv watching increasing the chances of a child becoming autistic. What if however children with autism/autism traits are more likely anyway to watch tv. I don't know if that is true, I'm just throwing it out there for debate.Possibly more time stuck in front of the box would mean less time engaged in imaginative play.I was a toddler in the late 50s/early 60s and apparently watched a lot of television. Nowadays a toddler watching lots of tv or videos would not be that unusual, but I'm not sure it was the case back in the late 50s/early 60s .
Agree, it's far too simplistic.
I remember a self expert on this subject (children, not Autism), said I was bad because of too much soft drink, and if I was drinking less high sugar drinks, with unnatural additives, then I would act better in the future. I do not think it could cause Autism, but might be less helpful on your eyesight? More so the old CRT, and of course working long hours in front of computer screens. But I am not a expert on that, so that just guess work.
I don't even try to make sense of why I've got ASD. I've heard so many theories. There is no concrete evidence as to why it happens. I could end up blaming a person who isn't responsible, blaming myself, getting paranoid, or to be short putting energy into something I don't need to. My way of making sense of it is there is no use making sense of it.
I think that not watching TV has the potential to inhibit social development in children.
There is some anecdotal evidence that back in the 1980, and 90s, children from families which had books and toys but no TV were better behaved and better when it came to academic knowledge but they were out of sync socially with their peer group and had a poorer sense of fashion. They were basically uncool.
I'd have to disagree with that evidence. As you stated it's anecdotal but I'd go as far as to say it's cynical. It seems to be taken from a viewpoint of someone who sees the study group as consumers. "Out of sync socially" probably means that they aren't consuming and seeing the world from the way the media would desire. "A poorer sense of fashion" is subjective and fashion trends are only set to increase consumption. They are superficial and easily manipulated standards, not practical social skills. Those standards only existed after the intergration of mass media into the mainstream of society. Being uncool isn't a developmental disorder. It's a subjective opinion of the way someone is percieved. I've seen the "coolest" person in one group of society not be able to adjust to another groups norms. Which made them "uncool". People just are who they are.
This is a deeply debatable subject and it has been discussed amongst parents I have known over the years. Children at school have to bond with their peer group if they are to survive school socially and avoid becoming social outcasts.
In the 1980s and 90s TV programmes were a prominent talking point for kids in the school playground. This was an era when millions of kids would rush home from school to watch the latest and greatest cartoons on CBBC and CITV. Next day they would talk about these programmes in the playground. When they got older they would watch an increasing amount of adult programmes. If kids did not have a TV, or watch programmes that other kids watched, then they were somewhat out of sync with their peer group. I know about this because I was given a large quantity of video tapes in the 1990s consisting of cartoons and children's programmes recorded in the 1980s. I preferred these to what was on TV at the time but found it difficult to talk about them in the school playground because most kids had never watched, or even heard of, most of the programmes. As I got older I gravitated towards programmes on Discovery, History Channel, and National Geographic, and only occasionally watched the terrestrial channels.
I have thought about whether 'social' TV programmes such as soaps or reality TV are educational in a social way. I can't stand most of these programmes but could not watching them have inhibited me socially? I have known some parents of children with AS who tried to get them to watch Eastenders because they thought that it would improve their social skills such as empathy or non-verbal communication.
I previously mentioned how TV has fragmented but kids still have to watch popular stuff if they are to form a positive relationship with their peer group.
There was never a television in my house until I was five years old. So not a cause of my autism.
My parents told me I would get square eyes if I watched too much television. I remember looking in a mirror to see if my eyes were going square - and I convinced myself they were! I don't believe that television causing autism has any more validity - and probably has less - than television causing square eyes.
Just another crack-brained theory!
Those are superficial social qualities, not developmental skills. You give media too much validation. Watching the same TV shows as other people is not a developmental skill. Children and adults bond over many more things than TV. This thread is about whether TV contributes to Autism, not whether not watching TV makes you a social outcast. What I'm getting is that ASD sufferers are social outcasts by default and consuming mainstream mass media would somehow change their condition if they did. A peer group consists of contemporaries who share the same interests. Interests consist of so much more than TV.
Growing up myself I did speak about TV but thinking of the friends I have had the longest I bonded with them more on a moral level. I used to play football, cricket, and games growing up too, I feel those are better ways to bond with people because you'd just turn up and play. We'd play against Traveller kids sometimes who never even owned a TV but we'd still manage to spend the day on the field and get along fine. Some kids did Karate, Rugby and fished. I played music and boxed. I found friends and how to interact somewhat persuing those interests.
I was a kid in the 80's and 90's and my parents didn't really watch much kids TV, so I was watching more adult films and shows. I couldn't talk about Kung-fu films, cowboy films and other stuff. The other kids were watching stuff I wasn't but it didn't affect me too much. At least in my eyes. Only a few other kids watched more grown up stuff and even then we barely spoke about it. We were more interested in playing on the field or hanging around the shops and making a nuisance of ourselves.
You sound like you have specific interests, those are better building blocks for a relationship with people than a mainstream, spoonfed, consumer centric view of the world. Those "social" TV shows that you wonder about are just full of charicatures enacting an overdramatised, exaggerated version of "reality". There's nothing there that would help anyone function well in a practical sense. Not watching TV wouldn't have inhibited you socially. If we went around acting like people and characters on TV we would look ridiculous. I'm not insulting you in anyway. I know from personal experience that people on TV are not like the average person on the street and people won't really take to someone emulating a character. As for parents that think that getting their kids to watch Eastenders would teach their kids social skills and non-verbal communication, they are seriously mislead. Why can't they be bothered to teach them personally. All of the stuff on Eastenders is basically unrealistic and full of dysfunctional characters. Eastenders is about as far removed from reality as Robocop.
TV has fragmented and the paradox is if everyone socialises using TV as a base, social interaction would be even more distant because of the fragmentation. For the world to work in such a manner where it would be a base for developmental skills it would have had to have existed forever, everyone would have to watch one channel, watch the same shows, and be the same age. TV would have to be an inavoidable intergrated part of the human psyche.
It is better to learn social skills from the real world in practice, rather than from a form of media that mainly projects the extremes of human behaviour and is there to stimulate fears and consumption.
tl;dr TV really isn't that important and relying on it will do more harm than good for your social skills. Learn them from real people. Trust me Arran, you really haven't missed too much! You've probably done yourself a favour!
Cloudy Mountains said:Those are superficial social qualities, not developmental skills.
I am aware of this but 99% of parents hold the view that social skills and a positive relationship between their children and their peer group are one and the same thing.
Cloudy Mountains said: As for parents that think that getting their kids to watch Eastenders would teach their kids social skills and non-verbal communication, they are seriously mislead. Why can't they be bothered to teach them personally. All of the stuff on Eastenders is basically unrealistic and full of dysfunctional characters. Eastenders is about as far removed from reality as Robocop.
I 100% agree with you. I find Eastenders a disgusting, denigrating, and depressing programme that has no place in the hearts and minds of any respectable family. It's so bad that I refuse to buy a TV licence aka the Eastenders tax as a result. The problem is that most parents just want their children to fit in socially at school and not cause trouble either for themselves or for others. Considering that schools are appallingly bad at providing help and support in life skills and social skills for children with AS; the NAS offers next to no services for such people; and it's not really a mental health issue from the perspective of the NHS, then it's unsurprising that parents, who are forced to take matters into their own hands, offer such DIY solutions.
Cloudy Mountains said:TV has fragmented and the paradox is if everyone socialises using TV as a base, social interaction would be even more distant because of the fragmentation. For the world to work in such a manner where it would be a base for developmental skills it would have had to have existed forever, everyone would have to watch one channel, watch the same shows, and be the same age. TV would have to be an inavoidable intergrated part of the human psyche.
It's interesting that for the 2000 London Assembly Elections the Green Party stated in their manifesto that they were opposed to having more and more TV channels but instead they wanted better quality programmes on the analogue terrestrial channels. This is despite broadcasting largely being outside of the territory of the London Assembly. I am aware of a person who contacted the Green Party about this stating that the demographic diversity of London is responsible for the demand for an increasing number of TV channels, especially foreign or culturally specific TV channels. What does the Green Party want to do? Bring back Thames Television?!
Cloudy Mountains said:It is better to learn social skills from the real world in practice, rather than from a form of media that mainly projects the extremes of human behaviour and is there to stimulate fears and consumption
This is absolutely true, but there have to be facilities in place in the real world to learn social skills.
I think it really depends on the peer group and the parents. I wouldn't generalise myself but I do get your point. Again though this is more of a percieved misconception than an actuality. Forcing a kid to be popular can do more harm than good, it's better to let themselves be themselves in my opinion. What's better to have a few good friends or even none at all, than to be thrust into having to conform to a bunch of people that are total twats, or a waste of time?
Lol, yeah most stuff on TV is total tripe. I barely watch anything with a narrative. A few shows the BBC have made over the last few years have been good McMafia was the last thing I found OK. It was pretty realistic. Black economy and legit banking working hand in hand. Most real "gangsters" don't sell cocaine. They work from offices in the square mile but I digress. I think nowadays that people have more avenues to express social interaction. It's more OK to be who you are. If you have a specific interest that would absolutely bore the life out of one person, there's another person who would love you for persuing that interest. I speak to some of my friends kids and they have interests that would have been bully fodder in my day but they get along fine. One of my friends kids is ASD and he's obsessed with 80's action and sci-fi but he seems to be getting on fine. These parents who think like that need to realise that common interests are a good way for kids to fit into a comfortable place in the world. Some things that aren't popular now can be all the rage in a year or two. Look at comic nerds (I was one growing up!). 20 years ago comics were a niche thing but now everyone wants to know more. I loved Kung-fu films as a kid but no-one watched them. By the time I was 14 everyone watched them. They need to let the kids be themselves and they will find that peer group thats good for them. In an ideal world that would happen but I think things will get there eventually.
I think that politics should never dictate art. If the politics are coming from the artist that's fine but if it's being guided by an outside entity it becomes ideological. TV is a medium for art. I think that's the reason so much stuff is becoming independent or web based. People are tired of forced agenda in art mediums. A well presented narrative that presents the intent of the project is far more intetesting.
I totally get what you mean but I guess it depends on the place in the spectrum some people are. Also on the individual. Sometimes a natural progression can be the way to go. There would be pitfalls but some people would learn more in an unforced environment. There are a lack of facilities for the kids that do need it though. There are a lack of facilities and services in general for all ASD people.