Are award shows outdated?


Are Hollywood numbers on our radar?
Photo courtesy: pxhere.com

Many people have been chatting about the recent 66th Annual Grammy Awards. Some people were disappointed in the verdicts, while others simply didn’t care.

The Grammys pulled in an average of 17.09 million viewers, according to ratings from Nielsen. That number was an increase since the pandemic, which has not been seen before. Despite an uptick in numbers, they have not reached pre-pandemic numbers in viewers.

Even though the numbers have gone up, many students do not feel connected to the glitz and glamour of stardom when it comes to annual award ceremonies.

Tyekia Byrd, a fourth-year health science pre-occupational therapy major at FAMU, no longer enjoys watching award shows.

“The recognition people get from award shows are nice, however, I do believe they are rigged,” Byrd said. “For individuals who lose or aren’t even nominated for an award, it can make them doubt themselves and I don’t like watching them anymore.”

Award shows have been overshadowed by social media and streaming platforms with the declining popularity of cable television. Past shows like the Oscars, Emmys, and Golden Globes have also received low ratings in recent years.

Americans with cable television dropped from 76% in 2015 to 56% in 2021, while 61% of Americans aged 18 to 29 do not have cable television subscriptions, according to a Pew Research Center survey.  The survey highlights the disconnect between viewers and the changing landscape of media formats.

Award shows have not been hip to the times.

Oversaturation and unoriginality also contribute to the decline of award shows in the entertainment industry. There is no longer entertainment within shows such as the People’s Choice Awards, the VMA’s, the Billboard Music Awards, etc. due to the sheer amount of sameness found among these shows. Curiosity and excitement have been lost due to so many choices.

Award show controversies have made students care less about what takes place on stage. The lack of diversity and non-mainstream nominations has deterred viewers from indulging in Hollywood numbers.

Iyana George, a second-year business administration major at FAMU, is not interested in what takes place at award shows.

“I don’t watch award shows,” George said. “They would be more enjoyable if some award shows were more inclusive instead of more biased.”

The OscarsSoWhite campaign in 2015 affected the way viewers tune in when it comes to award shows. Social media blasts were made and concerns were raised about the lack of diversity for people of color and gender inclusion.

Award shows are gradually declining with the rise of social media, streaming services, and a lack of innovation and inclusion. Times are changing, while award shows remain stagnant.

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