The Ever Changing World of the Television

By: Mike Schneid

word count:497

Television is one of the most life changing technologies that humans have ever made.  Television has affected the way people socialize, view politics, and learn to name a few.  In 1928 the first reliable television was made by Philo Farnsworth.  It took until the 1939 World’s Fair in New York City for television to actually start getting recognition (King 420). The average cost of the product was anywhere from $400-$500 dollars, which at the time was very expensive seeing the average American salary was $1300 per year.  There was digression in when the 1940’s came around due to World War 2, and most of the industrial power of the world being put into the war effort.  However in the later part of the decade color television was conceived.

The 1950’s saw the television go from a rare commodity to a household item.  In this decade there was also a large rise in television advertisements which changed the way television was to be seen.  Over the next 10 years there was an astronomical rise in television consumption and nearly every household in America had one (as seen in the graph below).  What television did, was give anyone a view into what was happening all over the world.  In 1969 an estimated 500 million people gathered around their televisions to watch Neil Armstrong land on the moon (King 420).  In the 1970s more shows became available and color television became a huge hit.  The 1980s saw a rise in cable enabling all people of all ages to watch programs.  The VCR was also a huge invention seen that it enabled people to record shows or watch a replaying of a show.  The 1990s saw another drastic change in television where both LCD and plasma displays came out.  There was also many new controls to the T.V. like a sleep timer and parental controls. 

Possibly the largest change to T.V. occurred in the 2000’s with the introduction of the internet.  Early on there were advances such as TiVo where one could record a show directly from the T.V. and a blue ray player that gave better quality to programs.  However today with web 2.0 T.V. has changed to becoming more internet based with many of the largest shows playing on Netflix and DISH TV (King 420).  However even with the internet based providers actually watching television is still very common.  People no longer have the time to sit down and watch a show and people would rather watch on their laptops while doing another task simultaneously.  In 20 years however this may be very different and I feel as if television will almost exclusively be watched online through some sort of provider.  This is because in modern society already it is easier to watch your favorite show when it is convenient for you instead of making your schedule around a show, and there are always more companies coming up with online services.

Works Cited

King, Elliot. “Currents in Communication: Textbook and Reader Book Supplement – December 1, 2014.” Currents in Communication: Textbook and Reader. Web. 1 May 2015.

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