1.1Background of Study
Since the beginning of the 21st century, reality TV has begun to monopolize both cable and broadcast primetime television programming schedules. In this context reality TV is defined as a show without ―actors‖ in which the general public has access to becoming a contestant on the program. While technically any type of live, unscripted, or non-fiction program is reality TV, this examination excludes news, interviews and talk show type of programs which were the contemporary television programs hitherto and it focus on competitive and entertainment reality TV programs. What those in the television business can understand is that reality TV is the most profitable form of television programming because it has lower production costs and often brings in more viewers and more advertising revenue than scripted programs (Hirschorn, 2007). However, what is not always fully understood is why more viewers are watching reality TV.
Reality television, is a broad category that includes a wide range of programs aiming to be both factual and entertaining, it‘s a genre that has become the latest favorite program of viewers which has made its way into the African society. Reality television is significantly proving to be a favorite among the youth – particularly those who fall within the 18-25 age range (Baumgardner, 2003; Brasch, 2003; Hiltbrand, 2004). Reality television on the whole can be summed up by four characteristics which are the attempted use of passive camera surveillance, illusion of reality, focus on ordinary people, and a certain extent of voyeurism. Although all reality programs share these traits, it is difficult to define reality television as a self-sufficient genre because it draws from a number of genres. Reality television continues to grow and change, like many programs on television. The fact that the genre has qualities from many different genres not only makes it difficult to define, but it also makes it versatile because of its ability to draw from many genres.