21 February 2010

Public images and media images of places

Eli Avraham and Eran Ketter, 2008

"Many researchers have written about the effect of television shows
and films on the image of countries, cities and tourist destinations.
Most people have not visited many of the places, so one of their main
sources of knowledge of the world is what they see in films and
television (Weimann, 2000). Numerous examples exist of places that
have been negatively affected by television shows, especially those
that focus on police officers, homicide detectives, violence, poverty
and social problems.

One unusual example of such an effect is a
complaint by Rio de Janeiro city officials claiming that the episode
of The Simpsons which “took place” in the city portrays it as unsafe,
violent and dirty, overrun by rats and monkeys, where tourists are
kidnapped for ransom (Yediot Acharonot, 10 April 2002).

Similar examples
can be found in the study by Avraham (2003a) where he presents
several cities and neighborhoods that have been adversely affected
by their presentation in television shows as places where crime, social
instability and economic distress are rampant." (...)