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Family representation on tv

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Family representation on tv Empty Family representation on tv

Post by Bilbobaggins Wed Aug 24, 2022 7:04 pm

Watching ads on TV and every family or couple shown as our stereotypical group seem to have representation from a variety of ethnic backgrounds, most noticeably shown by differing skin tones, it may just be that I live a very sheltered life in a Scottish backwater but when I walk down our High Street I do not see this melting pot of humanity, with 99% of those I encounter mirroring my own family 

Since getting out more after lockdown I have observed similar wherever we have gone on holiday. I presume these eclectic family representations are to meet some antidiscrimination rules or quotas, I would guess there is some so called positive discrimination being practiced in recruiting actors from certain demographics to portrays these so called typical families 

Bottom line is I am probably not their target audience which is just as well as all I do is switch off mentally when I see such adverts so couldn't tell you what they are trying to sell

Rant over think_smiley_46

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Post by HJA Wed Aug 24, 2022 7:17 pm

I think if you are an advertiser you are trying to encourage people to think that the product is for them. If they never see themselves represented then they are less likely to believe the product is for them.
Having lived for 30 years in greater Manchester I find it odd when there is not a wide ethnic representation.
Even here in Lincolnshire we have a fair few none white faces. Then of course we also have a strong Eastern European community.
Good, I say.
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Post by Peatlander 2 Wed Aug 24, 2022 8:43 pm

I think it's only right that everybody gets fair representation, regardless of race, creed, religion, gender or sexuality.

What I find difficult to understand is how directors of TV programs or films can cast a none white person to represent a historical figure who was patently white. Ok, said person may well be a brilliant actor/actress, but it's not historically correct.  Not that it should effect the viewers enjoyment of a show, but it kind of seems like history being altered so as to be inclusive. It wasn't.

Sometimes, I think positive discrimination is as bad as plain old discrimination.
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Post by rogerblack Thu Aug 25, 2022 10:37 am

It's an interesting point regarding the actors - I wonder how it was received when for many decades white actors would frequently 'black up' for certain roles?  I'm not just talking about Al Jolson so much as e.g. Laurence Olivier as Othello, the 'blackamoor' and if you look up the parts played by virtually any white 'movie' star you'll find them playing Arab, Chinese, African American, Mexican etc. parts with appropriate makeup etc.

It still happens, it seems - Joseph Fiennes has been cast as African American icon Michael Jackson in a TV movie - somewhat ironic of course, since Jackson spent much of his life and money having alterations to make him look more like a white man. 

I have always found it strange that it is very rare to see any black or brown faces on campsites. I don't think it's that they are made unwelcome, just that maybe they prefer to stay in their comfy homes rather than cram into a metal or fibreglass box or canvas (or whatever they're made of these days) tent in the middle of a field. There was much discussion recently about whether the countryside was racist(!) since it was mainly white folks who spent leisure time out there. 

Similarly with National Trust - we are members of National Trust for Scotland and the summer edition of the magazine is shown below. Certainly not representative of typical NT/NTS members, either in ethnicity or age but obviously the intention is to widen the diversity of the membership, which is surely no bad thing.

Family representation on tv Nts_co10

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Post by bikeralw Thu Aug 25, 2022 10:57 am

Where I live I'm surrounded by the Peak District National Park. I personally know someone who works for them. Apparently in recent years they've been threatened with a reduction of funding if they didn't take steps to attract ethnic minorities into the park.
I don't know how they've achieved this, maybe from publications and advertisements like the one above, but it seems to have worked.
I recently took my NZ family for a walk in the Kinder Scout area and we had friendly encounters with dozens of folk from the subcontinent/middle east extraction. Everyone was enjoying the great outdoors.
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Post by Richard75 Thu Aug 25, 2022 3:10 pm

If you really want to undertand this Bilbo and, quite possibly drive yourself nuts, you may want to read up on ESG (Google ESG + diversity, for instance). ESG is already a 40 trillion dollar industry that's now part of the whole fabric of business and investment. ESG taxonomies are being drafted by big governments, delivered via the financial markets and implemented by large corporations (defence companies have been deemed ESG-friendly, for instance, which is probably linked to the freeze on recruitment of white men in the RAF).

Fortunately, big government, investment banks, funds and large corporations are all entirely benevolent and have our best interests at heart! And if you believe that, can you lend me ten grand. I'll pay you back, honest : ).
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Post by Peatlander 2 Thu Aug 25, 2022 3:22 pm

There’s the thing, there are, and have been over the years, some really great actors that could have played Oliviers blacks or if the role had been presented to them. Of course, the luvvy club and old boys network would put the kybosh on that no doubt.

Minstrels, Jolson…acceptable then I guess, debatable, but not now, which is as it should be. To be honest I never understood the need for it…. If you can sing, dance, or act, it shouldn’t matter what colour your skin is, should it?  I do think casting is important though….as an example the (talented but miscast imho) black actress who played Anne Boleyn. Anne Boleyn wasn’t black, so why?  That’s the sort of thing that I don’t see the sense in. Fwiw, she was good in the role, but it wasn’t historically correct.

(Should maybe give some context, this is coming from somebody, who, as a kid couldn’t play with toy cars and soldiers etc unless they were all the same scale. I’m a bit funny that way!)

I think equality is very important. Both racial and gender…..but sometimes I think tptb take things a tad too far. Over icing the cake, so to speak.

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Post by Guest Fri Aug 26, 2022 11:44 am

I can remember the furore when Ben Kingsley was cast as Gandhi.

Nothing but praise once the film was released and they saw the effort he put into role. 

Colouring up a white actor is far easier to do that the other way round of course.

We would see very few ethnic minorities in this area until the last year or so. If I have a problem it is with the lack of integration but that can be the fault of either parties but I used to live on the boundary of Southall and it was travelling to another country to go to college.
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Post by rogerblack Fri Aug 26, 2022 2:25 pm

Would that be the Ben Kingsley who was born Krishna Pandit Bhanji?
(Albeit in Scarborough, not the punjab!).

I know exaclty what you mean about Southall - forty-odd years ago I was living on the Isleworth/Hounslow border and you could literally see the 'takeover' happening street by street. It was great in one way as I've always been a fan of spicy food and getting proper ingredients from the local shops was a doddle, but it did become just like living in a foreign country. 

As you touched on, hairyfool, the lack of integration was generally one-sided, particularly with the older generations who often didn't speak English, actually having no need to as they just didn't mix outside their own cultures. This did cause difficulties with the younger generations, who worked alongside the local indigenous* population and also wanted to socialise with us, some eventually intermarrying; much against the wishes of the immigrant parents and grandparents who wanted them to stay within their own communities.

So yes, much of the 'discrimination' or even 'racism' if you wish to use that term, was practised against the 'white' sections of the communities rather than the other way around.

*although I am not sure if that label could be correctly applied to me, as an ex-pat Scot who had moved south!

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Post by IanH Fri Aug 26, 2022 3:56 pm

When an apprentice in 1968, a fellow apprentice lived in Southall. As I was from Scotland his family kindly let me join him for weekends etc
Then it was a standard London suburb. Approx then the first Indians moved in, the rest is history.
Fast forward to 2006 we moved to Finchampstead in Berks for work. One day I took my wife to Southall, not having been for decades, it was a hot sunny day, we were the only non Indians there. I have travelled a lot in many parts of India, had I been parachuted blindfold I wouldn't have known whether I was in India or Southall!!
Not making any other comments, but it was interesting during out 2 years in Berks that many of the Indians were doing similar into Windsor.
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Post by Guest Fri Aug 26, 2022 4:58 pm

I see our Apprentice training hostel is now the Heston Hyde Hotel confused3, I just hope the rooms are a little larger than when I was there. I remember the clouds of smoke around 8am of all the clapped out apprentice cars and 2 stroke motorbikes roaring out of the car park onto North Hyde Lane, some north to Southall College and others south to Hatton Cross.

There was quite an eclectic mix amongst the apprentices, some local Indians, Americans, A Bermudan (who is now senior management at Bermuda Airport), Arab et al.. I can safely say there was no prejudice displayed when there despite the mix, I wonder if much of it is perceived by outsiders.

A lazy *** is a lazy *** no matter the colour, same with a "good bloke". One of my mates was a short, rotund, Indian of the Brahmin priest caste who took the ribbing he got in the same humour as it was given. Nowadays it would be those looking in from outside that would take umbrage at the language used in the 70's.
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Post by IanH Fri Aug 26, 2022 5:47 pm

We too had a mix, remember I was just 16 and hadn't been out of Scotland, so, in terms of foreigners, we had 3 Malay, 3 Welsh and 7 English!!!
The Malaysian were from Royal Malaysian Air Force, the rest were just foreigners various!!
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Post by Bilbobaggins Fri Aug 26, 2022 6:20 pm

Back in the 70s when I was an undergraduate in Aberdeen studying Pharmacy at what was then Robert Gordon's Institute of Technology (now RGU) about a quarter of the students in my year weren't of Scottish extraction, we had three from Malawi, including a prince. Several of Indian or Pakistani origin, mix of first and second generation, fair few from England, two Welsh and one each from Hong Kong and Ireland. We all mixed well and worked together.

We were also the first academic year in Aberdeen with 50% male 50% female, prior to that pharmacy was predominantly male, now very predominantly female.

Certainly allowed us to both broaden our horizons and tone down our individual dialects to a more received pronunciation so we were understood. Glaswegian and Black Country caused me more challenge to understand than Malawians

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Post by Guest Sat Aug 27, 2022 9:54 pm

I just think the media as a whole has a peculiar idea of who or what the majority are.

There are 19 houses in my street, in a village but only a couple of miles from a major town.

There is a widower, a widow, 2 quite elderly couples, one Indian family and the rest heterosexual couples ranging from newlyweds up to just of pensionable age.

Not one of African descent, no east European, no homosexual or lesbian (single or partnership), no single parent, no handicapped, even the divorced father has a permanent "new" partner. Yet in TV land such a place doesn't exist.

I also remember when there was upset at the thought of rebroadcasting Til' Death Us Do Part and Love Thy Neighbour. What the objectors seemed to be incapable of understanding was the fact that the story lines were about pointing out how stupid prejudice was. Are they really that different from Young Offenders or This Country? I know some in Ireland are less than happy about the former.

My wife was reading a "prize winning" book and she felt that the writer had done her hardest to include every possible minority label even when that label had absolutely no relevance to the plot, so much so that she gave up half way through when she lost track of who was who.
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Post by harrysp Sun Aug 28, 2022 5:19 pm

HairyFoo wrote:
Not one of African descent, no east European, no homosexual or lesbian (single or partnership), no single parent, no handicapped, even the divorced father has a permanent "new" partner. Yet in TV land such a place doesn't exist.

Handicapped by what? Maybe you mean disabled people.

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Post by Guest Sun Aug 28, 2022 5:23 pm

Sorry, yes an out of date phrase. The trouble is what terms are used seems to change with time even though the issues are the same.
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Post by Peter Brown Sun Aug 28, 2022 5:49 pm

For the last few years before I retired my immediate line manager was a lovely and extremely competent chap whose family had come to the UK from the West Indies.

We were in a meeting with our employers from the Welsh government and, whilst discussing a difficult scenario, I mentioned that is was a N.g.er i. . w.odp.... My boss never even noticed but the two white government guys just stopped dead and, you know, I'd no idea what I'd done wrong. It was one of the events that precipitated my retirement.

Our countries terminology had, apparently, changed but no one had told me.
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Post by Guest Sun Aug 28, 2022 6:04 pm

Remember the Robertson's jam logo! I know quite a few children who had such as a soft toy and loved them just as much as any teddy or doll, not a hint of prejudice. A neighbour came home with her child distraught because she had lost hers. We retraced her steps back to the bus stop with no luck but the next bus driver checked with the depot and it was found in her seat on the bus. As it was Croydon Depot in the 70'syou can imagine the origin of most of the staff but no problem, a child had lost her toy, that was all.

Then there was the film with Chris Rock and Jackie Chan. Chris told Jackie "do what I do". The greeting by Chris got a somewhat different response when used by Jackie despite being the same words. I think film makers would struggle to even script the word nowadays.
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