Friday, December 28, 2001
Looking for definitions of amateur, I came across this delightful sceptics dictionary. It has a small article on alpha waves, which correspond with the measurements made of children watching television, where the brain activity was dominated by beta waves. Because the desired alpha waves were supressed and the beta waves (fast/active) were dominant, researchers concluded that television worked like a drug on children. This was the base of a lot of fear of television and later any monitor media, when it came to the effect on children. I haven't heard much about this particular brand of media research lately, but the harm is done: the belief resurfaces at intervals to make parents blame television for what's wrong with their kids rather than looking at their own life-styles, diets, exercise or activity-patterns.