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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

a milligram of the X-treme zone - aka Gaming death for an audience

Have YOU ever wondered this: 

 Can TV turn us into potential executioners?

limits  -  power  -  
morality  -  obedience

A TV channel is stirring controversy with a documentary about a game show in which contestants obey orders to deliver increasingly powerful electric shocks to a man. 
The producers of "The Game of Death," wanted to examine both what they call TV's mind-numbing power to suspend morality, and the striking human willingness to obey orders. 

"Television is a power. We know it, but it's theoretical," producer Christophe Nick told the daily Le Parisien. "I wondered: Is it so important that it can turn us into potential executioners?"
In the end, some "players" gave the maximum jolt.
"People never would have obeyed if they didn't have trust," Nick was quoted as saying in the paper's Wednesday edition. 
The experience, he said, continued to effect participants even after it was over. Some grew bolder about standing up to their bosses, or admitted their homosexuality to their families, he said."For many, it changed their lives," Nick said.

Watch these two videos:

1)  Sky news  (01:17) - 

French TV 'Torture Game Show' Condemned

2) YOUTUBE  ( 02:20 )

Le Jeu de la Mort (The Game of Death) is a television documentary that was broadcast by the French state-run television channel. The documentary was presented as a social commentary  on the effects of humiliation in reality television and obeying orders, and its broadcast was followed by a studio discussion on the programme. 
The documentary focused on a conduction of the Milgram experiment, but with the additional factor of the popularity and influence of reality television on the general public. The experiment was performed under the guise of a television show known as La Zone Xtrême.  
Volunteers were given €xxxx to take part as contestants in a "pilot" for the fictitious show, where they had to administer increasingly stronger electric shocks to trained actors posing as players as punishment for incorrect answers, as encouraged to do so by the host and audience.
Only xxx of 80 "contestants" chose to end the game before delivering the highest voltage punishment.

  __ bit 1__

A disturbing French TV documentary has tried to demonstrate how well-meaning people can be manipulated into becoming torturers or even executioners. 
The hugely controversial Game of Death was broadcast in prime-time on a major terrestrial channel, France 2, on Wednesday.
It showed 80 people taking part in what they thought was a game show pilot. 
As it was only a trial, they were told they wouldn't win anything, but they were given a nominal 40 euro fee.
Before the show, they signed contracts agreeing to inflict electric shocks on other contestants.
One by one, they were put in a studio resembling the sets of popular game shows.
They were then asked to zap a man they believed was another contestant whenever he failed to answer a question correctly - with increasingly powerful shocks of up to 460 volts.

Blind obedience 
Egged on by a glamorous presenter, cries of "punishment" from a studio audience and dramatic music, the overwhelming majority of the participants obeyed orders to continue delivering the shocks - despite the man's screams of agony and pleas for them to stop.
Screen grab from The Game of Death
 This programme denounces manipulation by authority but at the same time it manipulates people 
Marie-France Hirigoyen

Eventually he fell silent, presumably because he had died or lost consciousness.
The contestants didn't know that the man, strapped in a chair inside a cubicle so they couldn't see him, was really an actor. There were no shocks and it was all an experiment to see how far they would go. 
Only xxx of the 80 participants stopped before the ultimate, potentially lethal shock. 
"No one expected this result," intoned a commentary. "some candidates went to the very end." 
The show was billed as a warning against blindly obeying authority - and a critique of reality TV shows in which participants are humiliated or hurt.  
Psychiatrist Marie-France Hirigoyen, who had no part in the documentary, said she accepted that it could help viewers understand the importance of standing up to an abusive authority, but she was concerned about its effect on participants. 
"This programme denounces manipulation by authority but at the same time it manipulates people," she told the BBC.
"I wouldn't have accepted this show because I think it inflicts unnecessary trauma on people, but on the other hand, to get this message across, you probably need to be sensationalist."

  __ bit  2__

Fake TV Game Show 'Tortures' Man, Shocks France
The documentary makers say reality television relies increasingly on violent, humiliating and cruel acts to boost ratings. They say they simply wanted to see if we would go so far as to kill someone for entertainment.
Christophe Nick produced the documentary, The Game of Death, with a group of scientists and researchers.
"Most of us think we have free thinking and so we are responsible for our acts," Nick says. "This experience shows that in certain circumstances, a power — the TV in this case — is able to make you do something you don't want to do."
The idea that something deeply rooted in the human psyche makes most of us unable to resist authority is not new. The French documentary was based on an American experiment carried out in the 1960s by psychologist Stanley Milgram.
Milgram had participants delivering what they believed were electric shocks to a man every time he answered a question incorrectly. In that experiment, 60 percent of participants obeyed the sadistic orders until the end.
The French documentary, which was broadcast in France on Wednesday night, included footage of the Milgram experiment.
Sociologist Jean Claude Kaufmann says the French version combines Milgram's use of authority with the power of live television. He says the result in the French experiment — a higher percentage of participants willing to shock the subject — shows that the manipulative power of television further increases people's willingness to obey.

doc complete (01:31:20) - in FRENCH -youtube

CODA:  wikipedia - Replications
A virtual replication of the experiment, with an avatar serving as the learner.
Around the time of the release of Obedience to Authority in 1973–74, a version of the experiment was conducted at La Trobe University in Australia. As reported by Perry in her 2012 book Behind the Shock Machine, some of the participants experienced long-lasting psychological effects, possibly due to the lack of proper debriefing by the experimenter.[26]
In 2002, the British artist Rod Dickinson created The Milgram Re-enactment, an exact reconstruction of parts of the original experiment, including the uniforms, lighting, and rooms used. An audience watched the four-hour performance through one-way glass windows.[27][28] A video of this performance was first shown at the CCA Gallery in Glasgowin 2002.
A partial replication of the experiment was staged by British illusionist Derren Brown and broadcast on UK's Channel 4 in The Heist (2006).[29]
Another partial replication of the experiment was conducted by Jerry M. Burger in 2006 and broadcast on the Primetime series Basic Instincts. Burger noted that "current standards for the ethical treatment of participants clearly place Milgram's studies out of bounds." In 2009, Burger was able to receive approval from the institutional review board by modifying several of the experimental protocols.[30] Burger found obedience rates virtually identical to those reported by Milgram found in 1961–62, even while meeting current ethical regulations of informing participants. In addition, half the replication participants were female, and their rate of obedience was virtually identical to that of the male participants. Burger also included a condition in which participants first saw another participant refuse to continue. However, participants in this condition obeyed at the same rate as participants in the base condition.[31]
In the 2010 French documentary Le Jeu de la Mort (The Game of Death), researchers recreated the Milgram experiment with an added critique of reality television by presenting the scenario as a game show pilot. Volunteers were given €40 and told they would not win any money from the game, as this was only a trial. Only 16 of 80 "contestants" (teachers) chose to end the game before delivering the highest-voltage punishment.[32][33]
The experiment was performed on Dateline NBC on an episode airing April 25, 2010.
The Discovery Channel aired the "How Evil are You" segment of Curiosity on October 30, 2011. The episode was hosted by Eli Roth, who produced results similar to the original Milgram experiment, though the highest-voltage punishment used was 165 volts, rather than 450 volts.[34]
Due to increasingly widespread knowledge of the experiment, recent replications of the procedure have had to ensure that participants were not previously aware of it.[citation needed]

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