Television has profound impact on our society. It has changed the life styles of the people and has become a major influence in our culture. Unlike printing, which took hundreds of years to influence the culture, TV's impact was almost instantaneous.
Television has occupied an important position in homes and therefore, it is bound to make an impact on the individuals and the society Television, as a technology has changed the complexion and manner of conveying ideas to people and therefore, there is a need to examine the individual's relationship with the television.
Explaining the importance of television, Joseph aptly mentions, "Having earned a niche for itself in ways that are inimitable and unprecedented, TV has worked its way as an indispensable member of hundreds of millions of families across the world. To say that it merely educates, informs and entertains is an understatement.
For in the seven decades since its invention by John Baird, the fascinating minutiae of how the medium works and influences has put it in a class of its own. From an apparently innocuous box it has metamorphosed into the protagonist, altering the very character of human transactions and shaping the way human beings think and behave.
This has opened a Pandora's box and fulled a stormy debate on the role of television in human society". (Part 1: 269).
In view of the fact that television in India is fast developing as a major source of mass enlightenment, leisure and pleasure, it is essential that its impact in various areas is analyzed.
This can go a long way in providing guidelines for future developmental programmes of television in India. In terms of critics, comments and reviews no other medium, print, radio, cinema, caught the fancy of the analysts as television has.
Deodhar strongly feels that television has made contributions to the lives of people of India. Traditional media people consistently underestimate television's culture changing effects, mainly because they overlook certain characteristics that are so obvious that one takes them for granted.
The most important feature of television is it's ability to deliver simultaneously into the intimate environment of millions of homes, touching lines of the entire household, ideas mingled with powerful drama (17).
Television has brought a revolutionary change in the way people receive information and understand the world by shifting them from direct experience of life and environment to the second hand or contrived experiences, which make people feel that they are directly experiencing the events or different places.
Research studies have pointed out that perceptions of the television messages, images and ideas shape the entire social system. The present out reach of television has created awareness and appreciation of the socio-cultural ethos of our different regions.
Television has contributed to breaking the social barriers and inculcation of the scientific temper in our masses. Studies have shown that exposure to media leads to the appreciation of social and cultural ethos.
For any social change to take place flow of information is of prime importance. It increases the understanding of the people regarding the issue and develops common feeling for the need for social change.
Information bridges the gap of understanding between the people and helps them to unite for the cause. Television has done this job by contributing to the information explosion. Saxena also points out "Today's information explosion has opened the floodgates of knowledge and curiosity.
This is being attributed to the vast television exposure. A majority of our people live in remote villages, cut off from, what is known as, modernity. Till late, they led a life submerged in age old conservatism. But now they are able to see and appreciate what is going around, adding to their information gain".
In United States of America television created a great impact on homogenization of a heterogeneous society.
It played an important role in providing a common denominator to multi-lingual, multi racial American society which led to certain uniformity in societal reaction to situations or events, in developing common response in personal and social communication, in better appreciation of people with diverse beliefs and life styles.