Saturday, May 12, 2007

Shocker: too much TV may interfere academically

Who could have seen this one coming? A 20-year study in upstate New York shows that excessive television viewing by school-aged children may result in academic failure -- they are markedly less likely to attend college than those who don't watch so much crap on the idiot box.

The 20-year study involving nearly 700 families in upstate New York, US, found that those watching more than three hours of TV a day were twice as likely not continue their education past high school. The researchers say their study is the first to show that attention problems linked to TV viewing could be the cause of academic failure, since they controlled for learning difficulties and behavioural problems at the start of the study.

So, sitting still and staring at a box of shiny little lights for hour after hour turns you into the next Homer Simpson.

But other experts say the link is unclear: teens with learning disorders might simply be more likely to watch many hours of TV because they find activities such as reading textbooks too challenging.

Then again, it may be that the parents who think it's fine to let their kids watch three hours or more per night on that infernal machine are also the sorts who put zero emphasis on education, and it rubs off on the kids. Parents, after all, seem to have a considerable amount of influence on how kids think (or don't think). (Hi, Mom! I blame society.)

Or, there's that possibility that the electronic signals from the device may be directly transmitting messages into your brain from aliens (or from the CIA), turning you into just another Truther...

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