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Guess Which Group Is the Latest to Find Itself Snubbed by Television

Sep 13, 2017  •  Post A Comment

A new study reveals that another group is being spurned by TV. The group is seniors.

Senior characters are “dramatically underrepresented on popular television, according to a new study from USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism,” Variety reports. “Looking at a sampling of 72 shows — a mix of the most popular series according to Nielsen ratings in the 18-49 demo and with viewers 65 and older — the study, titled ‘Seniors on the Small Screen: Aging in Popular Television,’ found that people ages 60 and older made up only 9.4% of speaking roles, despite making up 19.9% of the U.S. population, according to the U.S. census.”

One episode of each series was examined, and only three of the 72 shows surveyed came within two percentage points of 19.9%, Variety reports.

“Seniors accounted for only 8.2% of series-regular roles on the shows surveyed,” Variety notes. “Among senior roles, diversity was scarce. Only 30% of all roles for characters ages 60 and older were female. Thirty-eight of the 72 programs surveyed had no female senior role.”

4 Comments

  1. I’ve been triggered. This “woking” has spurred me to seek a safe space.

  2. You mean to tell me that USC is just now revealing something we’ve known for 25 years? Since “The Golden Girls” was canceled, almost none of television has given seniors a fair shake. We all died at 50, so say ad agencies and network execs. Wonder what professor(s) will receive a promotion for publishing this stunning and amazing bit of research? You don’t need an empirical project to prove this.

  3. Will this ever end? Now does every program need to go through an algorithm analysis to assure every possible demographic be represented and it must be equal to the representation of that demographic in the population? Will that analysis need to be done monthly? Or just when writing scripts for each season? What about syndication? Will each old series have to analyzed against the same demographic standards to be sold? More time should be spent developing original content than dealing with this nonsense.

  4. The group.that has been left out are people between the coasts – especially the South. Not one Southern comedy in decades. Not doing anything to help.national unity for sure!

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