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Girl Scout survey explores girls and reality TV viewing

April 30, 2012

As the nation participates in Screen-Free Week* (April 30 – May 6), Girl Scouts of Wisconsin Southeast ( shares findings from a Girl Scouts of the USA Girl Scout Research Institute (GRSI) survey regarding girls and reality TV.

Turn on your TV any time of the day or night and you’ll most likely find a reality TV show somewhere—American Idol, Jersey Shore, or The Amazing Race—the list seems to grow every day! Although reality TV is more popular and entertaining than ever and many teens (and adults) follow their favorite reality TV shows devotedly, some studies argue that reality TV contributes to bad behavior and actually warps a person’s sense of reality.

In a survey of more than 1,100 girls around the country, it was found that are significant differences between those girls who consume reality TV on a regular basis and those who do not. Of girls surveyed, regular reality TV viewers differ dramatically from their non-viewing peers in their expectations of peer relationships, their overall self-image, and their understanding of how the world works. The findings also suggest that reality TV can function in the lives of girls as a learning tool and as inspiration for getting involved in social causes.

Visit the Press Room (under News) at to download a fact sheet, tips for girls and tips for adults.

*April 30 – May 6, 2012 is Screen-Free Week (formerly TV-Turnoff), an annual event in which parents, children, teachers, and others across the country turn off screen media (television, video games, computers, cell phones, etc.) and celebrate the magic of being unplugged. Find more information at


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