Diversity Monitor 2005. Diversity as a quality aspect of television in the Netherlands

Communications 32 (1):97-121 (2007)

This article looks into the way in which public-service as well as commercial TV stations in the Netherlands assume their social responsibility towards a pluralist society. After all, television channels are expected to be ‘mirrors of society’; the key question is then how successful their programs are in conveying a well-balanced representation of all groups in society. By means of a quantitative analysis, the Diversity Monitor charts the presentation of different groups, with a particular focus on gender, age, and ethnicity. Apart from diversity, and as a subcomponent of the Quality Card, the Monitor also reviews innovation as an indicator of program quality. The results reveal a wide diversity of TV programs in the Netherlands, but diversity as such is no guarantee of a balanced presentation of society at large. Due to selection mechanisms on the side of the broadcaster and the public, what the viewer eventually gets is at the most a mirror of his or her own group.
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DOI 10.1515/commun.2007.005
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