Steven Johnson Watching Tv Makes You Smarter Analysis

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The discussion of whether or not TV makes you smarter has been going on for years, and while both sides have valid points Steven Johnson takes the side saying it does. In “watching TV makes you smarter”, he explains how TV creates cognitive benefits and enhances intellectual growth. The article addresses many elements on why this is true such as the sleeper curve, and single versus multiple threading of today’s TV shows. Although his arguments are good he lacks the proof and is pretty one sided in his writing. In watching TV makes you smarter Steven Johnson argues the advantages of TV and how it requires more thinking due to their new style of threading. He states that older shows such as starsky and hutch only have one plot to follow,…show more content…
The presentation of graph throughout the article helps you visualize and understand his idea of single and multiple threads, as well as some of the TV shows he uses with the graphs. Another strength is the abundance of TV shows he list, and how he uses them. Johnson will give a TV show such as Starsky and Hutch, then present a more current show that is similar, and then explain how the more current one is more complex. It was good that he brought up the sleeper curve, and threading because they explain why he thinks TV make individual smarter. Johnson believes the sleeper curve is “enhancing our cognitive faculties, not dumbing them down” because while watching a show with a complex plot you are being entertained, so you aren’t fully aware of the amount of thinking you are doing. Then having multiple threading to compliment the Sleeper Curve boosts his claim because having to follow more than one story in an episode requires cognitive…show more content…
He presents strong points, but without the proof and studies to back them up they just sound like an opinion. Johnson also doesn’t you any outside sources to present points, which could’ve really help validate his argument by using experts and their research to show facts that people are getting smarter watching TV. He doesn’t give the opinion of the other side in his article, which is extremely important when arguing such a controversial topic as this one is. While one of his strengths was the variety of TV show examples he listed. It is also a major weakness because of the fact that over half shows he listed he didn’t explain, or tell why they were listed. Which kind of makes them pointless if readers don’t know what the shows are to begin with. He gives other examples such as video games, movies, and books that wouldn’t be a problem if his article wasn’t about TV specifically making individuals smarter. Johnson starts off a whole section talking about movies and the “flashing arrow”, but as it continues he doesn’t explain how this point relates to TV making you smarter. Him not explaining those paragraphs kind of made them pointless in the article, and hurt his argument. He then compares picking a TV show to picking a video games, and briefly addresses the rating system of those video

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