FlowTV is a critical forum on television and media culture published biweekly by the Department of Radio, Television, and Film at the University of Texas at Austin.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Television as an Advertising Medium (Panel #1)

Panel Columnist: Chris Anderson (Indiana University)
Participants: Neal Burns (University of Texas at Austin), Harper Cossar (Georgia State University), David Gurney (Northwestern University), Alexander Russo (Catholic University), Spencer Downing (University of Central Florida), Lynn Spigel (Northwestern University),
Panel Moderator: Nick Marx (University of Texas at Austin)

Question: What does television studies have to say about television advertising? Television would not exist in the United States without the economic foundation of advertising and the insistent presence of commercials on TV screens. Increasing numbers of viewers across the globe witness television commercials of one sort or another on a daily basis. Most of us note the general existence of commercials, or the economic and ideological imperatives of a commercial system, but then turn our attention to some other aspect of the medium, while shunting television advertising into the background. There is little scholarship in television studies that brings commercials into the foreground or that locates particular commercials or advertising strategies in the history of television. Why have we paid relatively scant attention to television as an advertising medium? What does television studies have to say about television advertising?