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Rich Reality TV Performers and Materialism in Viewers

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0045061/00001

Material Information

Title: Rich Reality TV Performers and Materialism in Viewers Connecting Parasocial Interaction and Cultivation Theory
Physical Description: 1 online resource (137 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Pinkston, Erin C
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: cultivation -- interaction -- material -- materialism -- parasocial -- reality -- rich -- television -- tv -- wealth -- wealthy
Journalism and Communications -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Mass Communication thesis, M.A.M.C.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This study examines the potential relationship between parasocial interaction and cultivation theory in regard to reality shows. Specifically, the author surveyed fans of reality shows that predominately feature wealthy individuals to discover their levels of parasocial interaction with a character on the show and their levels of materialism. A total of 340 usable responses were gathered by posting requests to take the survey on shows’ Facebook pages as well as messaging fans who were active on those pages. Linear regressions were performed comparing parasocial interaction scores with materialism scores. Results indicate that a parasocial relationship with a rich reality show star predicts materialism in viewers and amount of exposure to shows featuring wealthy individuals predicts materialism, as well.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Erin C Pinkston.
Thesis: Thesis (M.A.M.C.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Cleary, Johanna.

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0045061:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0045061/00001

Material Information

Title: Rich Reality TV Performers and Materialism in Viewers Connecting Parasocial Interaction and Cultivation Theory
Physical Description: 1 online resource (137 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Pinkston, Erin C
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2012

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: cultivation -- interaction -- material -- materialism -- parasocial -- reality -- rich -- television -- tv -- wealth -- wealthy
Journalism and Communications -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Mass Communication thesis, M.A.M.C.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This study examines the potential relationship between parasocial interaction and cultivation theory in regard to reality shows. Specifically, the author surveyed fans of reality shows that predominately feature wealthy individuals to discover their levels of parasocial interaction with a character on the show and their levels of materialism. A total of 340 usable responses were gathered by posting requests to take the survey on shows’ Facebook pages as well as messaging fans who were active on those pages. Linear regressions were performed comparing parasocial interaction scores with materialism scores. Results indicate that a parasocial relationship with a rich reality show star predicts materialism in viewers and amount of exposure to shows featuring wealthy individuals predicts materialism, as well.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Erin C Pinkston.
Thesis: Thesis (M.A.M.C.)--University of Florida, 2012.
Local: Adviser: Cleary, Johanna.

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2012
System ID: UFE0045061:00001


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1 RICH REALITY TV PERFORMERS AND MATERIALISM IN VIEWERS: CONNECTING PARASOCIAL INTERACTION AND CULTIVATION THEORY By ERIN CASSIDY PINKSTON A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FU LFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS IN MASS COMMUNICATION UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2012

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2 2012 Erin Cassidy Pinkston

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3 To my parents, David and Carol

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank Johanna Cleary, Ph.D., Amy Jo Coffey Ph.D., Wayne Wanta Ph.D. and Jody Hedge for all of their assistance, advice and encouragement throughout this research process. This thesis would not exist without their guidance.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 8 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 9 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 12 2 LITERATURE REVIEW ................................ ................................ .......................... 16 Reality Television ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 16 History of Reality TV ................................ ................................ ......................... 17 Reality TV Today ................................ ................................ .............................. 18 Involvement/Engagement ................................ ................................ ....................... 22 Parasocial Relationships ................................ ................................ .................. 23 Parasocial Interaction Scale ................................ ................................ ............. 34 Cultivation Theory ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 35 Materialism and Wealth ................................ ................................ .......................... 39 Materialism and Wealth Today ................................ ................................ ......... 40 Material Values Scale ................................ ................................ ....................... 40 Basis for Study ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 41 Research Questions ................................ ................................ ............................... 43 3 METHOD ................................ ................................ ................................ ................ 44 Sample ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 44 Surveyed Reality Shows ................................ ................................ ......................... 45 Survey ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 48 Demographic Information ................................ ................................ ................. 49 Foil Questions ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 49 Amount of Exposure ................................ ................................ ......................... 49 Duration of Exposure ................................ ................................ ........................ 49 Parasocial Interaction Scale ................................ ................................ ............. 49 Material Values Scale ................................ ................................ ....................... 50 Experience with Wealth ................................ ................................ .................... 50 Optional Questions ................................ ................................ ........................... 50 Complications ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 50 Data Collection ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 51

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6 4 RESULTS ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 53 Respondent Demographics ................................ ................................ .................... 53 Scales ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 53 Parasocial Interaction Scale ................................ ................................ ............. 53 Material Values Scale ................................ ................................ ....................... 54 Experience with Wealth Scale ................................ ................................ .......... 54 Amount of Exposure ................................ ................................ ............................... 54 Duration of Exposure ................................ ................................ .............................. 55 Mean Parasocial Interaction Scale Scores by Show ................................ ............... 56 Mean Material Values Scale Scores by Show ................................ ........................ 56 Research Questions ................................ ................................ ............................... 56 Research Question 1 ................................ ................................ ........................ 56 Research Question 2 ................................ ................................ ........................ 57 Research Question 3 ................................ ................................ ........................ 57 Control Variables ................................ ................................ .............................. 58 Additional Findings ................................ ................................ ................................ 59 5 DISCUSSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 74 Explanation ................................ ................................ ................................ ............. 75 Favorite Thing About the Show ................................ ................................ ............... 76 Favorite Thing About Favorite Character ................................ ................................ 80 Comparison of Optional Question Answers ................................ ............................ 84 Limitations ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 85 Suggestions for Future Research ................................ ................................ ........... 86 Conclusion ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 88 APPENDIX A SURVEY FOR BASKETBALL WIVES FANS ................................ .......................... 90 B SURVEY FOR GIULIANA & BILL FANS ................................ ................................ 95 C SURVEY FOR REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSE Y FANS .......................... 100 D SURVEY FOR FANS .......................... 105 E SURVEY FOR KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS FANS ........................ 110 F SURVEY FOR REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW YORK CITY FANS ..................... 115 G SURVEY FOR HOLLYWOOD EXES FANS ................................ ......................... 120 H SURVEY FOR KENDRA ON TOP FANS ................................ ............................. 125 REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 130

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7 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 137

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8 L IST OF TABLES Table page 3 1 ................................ .............................. 52 3 2 Completed responses by show. ................................ ................................ .......... 52 4 1 Reported races of respondents. ................................ ................................ ......... 60 4 2 Reported income levels of respondents. ................................ ............................ 60 4 3 Reported education levels of respondents. ................................ ........................ 60 4 4 Mean parasocial interaction scale scores by show. ................................ ............ 61 4 5 Mean mate rial values scale scores by show. ................................ ...................... 61

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9 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 4 1 Distribution of parasocial interaction scale scores. ................................ ............. 62 4 2 Distribution of material values scale scores. ................................ ....................... 62 4 3 Distribution of experience with wealth scale scores. ................................ ........... 63 4 4 Distribution of amount of exposure responses. ................................ .................. 63 4 5 Distribution of duration of exposure responses. ................................ ................. 64 4 6 Regression analysis for amount of exposure predicting materialism score. ....... 64 4 7 Regression analysis for duration of exposure predicting materialism score. ...... 65 4 8 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score. ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 65 4 9 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score pre dicting materialism score, controlling for age. ................................ ................................ ................... 66 4 10 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for gender. ................................ ................................ .............. 66 4 11 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for Hispanic origin. ................................ ................................ .. 67 4 12 Regression analysis for p arasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for race. ................................ ................................ .................. 68 4 13 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for incom e level. ................................ ................................ ..... 68 4 14 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for education level. ................................ ................................ 69 4 15 Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for experience with wealth score. ................................ ........... 70 4 16 Multiple regression analysis for parasocia l interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hispanic origin, race, income level and education level. ................................ ................................ ................... 7 1 4 17 Multiple regression analysis for parasocial inte raction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hispanic origin, race, income level, education level and experience with wealth score. ................................ ... 72

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10 4 18 Multiple regression anal ysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hispanic origin, race, education level and experience with wealth score. ................................ ............. 73

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11 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Gradua te School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Master of Arts in Mass Communication RICH REALITY TV PERFORMERS AND MATERIALISM IN VIEWERS: CONNECTING PARASOCIAL INTERACTION AND CULTIVATION THEORY By Erin Cassidy Pinkston December 2012 Chair: Johanna Cleary Major: Mass Communication This study examines the potential relationship between parasocial interaction and cultivation theory in regard to reality shows. Specifically, the author surveyed fa ns of reality shows that predominately feature wealthy individuals to discover their levels of parasocial interaction with a character on the show and their levels of materialism. A total of 340 usable responses were gathered by posting requests to take th e survey on pages as well as messaging fans who were active on those pages. Linear regressions were performed comparing parasocial interaction scores with materialism scores. Results indicate that a parasocial relationship with a rich real ity show star predicts materialism in viewers and amount of exposure to shows featuring wealthy individuals predicts materialism, as well.

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12 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION only because it f eatured that celebrity or caught an episode of a talk show on which t hat When fans have m ore than a passing interest in a celebrity, Horton and Wohl refer to this as a sided relationships in which a first party knows quite a bit about a second party, but the second party knows nothing about the first (Horton & Wohl, 1956). According to Horton and Wohl (1956), parasocial relationships exist along a spectrum. On one end there is a simple preference for a particular famous person, show every week. More toward the middle of the spectrum, a fan may have a fascination with a particular celebrity, causing s Twitter feed, read magazine articles written about the celebrity and maybe put up posters of the sta r in his or her bed room. On the other end of the spectrum is a more sinister type of infatuation. On December 8, 1980, John Lennon of the rock group the Beatles was shot and killed not by a jealous girlfriend or a bitter enemy; he was murdered by one of his own years, Mark David Chapman emulated the rock star as much as he could. He played e ven married an older Asian woman just like Lennon had (Mayer et al., 1980). This

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13 murder ) is an extreme example of parasocial interaction. Celebrities are understandably wary of obsessive ad mirers. In a recent interview with Vogue stalkers who want to take me home and chain me Meter, 2012, p. 193). Admittedly, these types of fans exist on the extreme side of parasocial interaction; plenty of people idolize their favorite celebrity without resorting to murder or stalking. However, again, accordin g to Horton and Wohl, parasocial interaction is a spectrum. On one end are dangerous cases and on the other end is talking with a friend about its most recent episode (Horton & Wohl, 1956). This thesis focuses on a more benign form of parasocial interaction not the treacherous kind that relationship) s professional sports players considered to be highly athletic themselves? Do people who admire musicians tend to be more musically minded than their peers? Do people who have parasocia l relationships with wealthy television stars place a high value on material possessions in their own lives? In this research, the author explores how parasocial relationships with reality e real world. Because a reality show is presenting the real life of its stars, it is logical that viewers will

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14 situation of its characters. This research specifically focuses on how a parasocial relationship with a wealthy reality star may be positively correlated with a higher level of materialism in the viewer. For instance, do fans of Real Housewives of New Jersey aspire to owning fancy homes? Do Basketball Wives devotees d ream of traveling to exotic locations on a whim? Do viewers of find it commonplace to spend $1 million to exchange vows? favorite celebrities. Besides television, concerts, magazine articles, etc.), one can check in with a favorite celebrity via his or her Facebook page or Twitter account. Many of these celebrities have their own reality shows on which fans get to see a glimpse of the personal lives of their favorite famous people. Cultivation theory posits that people get their views of the world from what they see on television (Gerbner & Gross, 1976). Original research in the field was on tel evision watching in general and fiction television shows, but what about reality shows? Reality shows are supposedly just that: reality. Does it stand to reason that people will accept what they see on reality shows as fact? Furthermore, if a person consis tently watches reality television shows centered around wealthy individuals, could This is an exploratory study that examines how parasocial relationships with ptions about the real world. In an

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15 parasocial relationship with a wealthy reality star may cultivate materialism in the viewer. Through surveys conducted through the social n etworking site Facebook the author gathered a sample of 340 respondents. Fans of eight different reality shows featuring wealthy individuals were surveyed regarding parasocial interaction, material values and personal experience with wealth. This study i s important because it seeks to advance understanding of how viewers connect with media By learning how reality shows correlate with about the real world via parasocial relationships the spectators have with the performers, mass communicati on researchers will have a clearer picture of media engagement

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16 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Reality Television For the past couple decades, reality television has been popular in American and European programming (Kilborn, 1994). Since the early 1990s, rea lity television has been studied at length, including topics like its history and social context (Andrejevic, 2004; Baker, 2003; McCarthy, 2009; Murray, 2009; Ruoff, 2002), creation of celebrity (Bell, 2010), its presentation of realism (Baker, 2003; Bires si & Nunn, 2005; Chvasta & Fassett, 2003; Couldry, 2009; Godard, 2003; Halbert, 2003; Holmes, 2006; Kilborn, 1994; King, 2006; McGoldrick, 2004; Ogdon, 2006; Patkin, 2003; Roth, 2003; Vrooman, 2003), its perpetuation of stereotypes (Gray, 2009), the busine ss of the genre (Jenkins, 2009; Magder, 2009) and how reality television affects its viewers (Dyer, 2011; Kavka, 2008). The most relevant information will be discussed. visible offered an earlier but more comprehensive definition of the genre (1994). According to the author, reality programming y with the help of lightweight video equipment, of events in the lives of individuals or groups, (b) an attempt to simulate such real life events through various forms of dramatized reconstruction and (c) the incorporation of this material, in suitably edi ted form, into an attractively packaged television programme which can be promoted on the strength of its other kinds of nonfiction progra different formats of reality television, Andrejevic argues that providing a definition for

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17 capture all the existin g genres and exclude other forms of programming such as the television do exist. According to Ouellette and Murray, reality TV subgenres include gamedocs, dating progra ms, makeover programs, docusoaps, talent contests, court (2009, p. 5). History of R eality TV Although its popularity began picking up speed in the 1990s, reality television was already beginning in the 1950s (Baker, 2003; Bell, 2010; Ouellette & Murray, 2009). During the 1954 55 season of the television program Omnibus a short hidden ca mera film called Children of the U.N. aired. The comedic film featured interviews with and footage of children who attended an international school in New York City. Children of the U.N. was just one of several reality type films that aired on Omnibus that season (McCarthy, 2009). A few years later, the producer of Children of the U.N. Allen Funt, created the television show Candid Camera (McCarthy, 2009; Baker, 2003). Candid Camera s ranked number seven and had a Nielsen rating of 27.3; two seasons later, it rose to number two wit h a rating of 31.1 (Baker, 2003 ). The 1970s saw the reality progr amming genre start to really take shape with the airing of An American Family on PBS (Ouellette & Murray, 2009; Ruoff, 2002; Smith & Wood, 2003). In fact, it is thought by some to be the first true reality program (Oullette & Murray, 2009). A camera follow ed the Loud family of Santa Barbara, California, and

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18 recorded their lives. That footage was edited and broadcast on PBS. The first episode aired in January 1973 and the series ran for a tota l of twelve weeks (Ruoff, 2002 ). The documentary type show was des life soap Reality TV Today The Real World (Kilborn, 1994; Ouellette & Murray, 2009; Smith & Wood, 2003) The Real World running reality live together in a fancy house in a different city. Their lives are filmed around the clock a manner intended to ignite conflict and dramatic narrative development, placing the cast in a house filled with cameras and microphones, and employing ra pid editing 5). When the show debuted, it started a surge of reality programming (MTV, 2007; Ouellette & Murray, 2009 ; Bell, 2010). The Real World influenced the format of other rea lity shows such as Big Brother and Survivor (Ouellette & Murray, 2009 ). As of September 2012, The Real World Survivor debuted in the summer of 2000 and introduced the component of competi tion to the world of reality programming (Smith & deprived them of everyday creature comforts like shelter, by contests of physical and mental endurance, and by social dynamics of learning to cooperate with complete

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19 by fellow contestants, with the final one standi ng being rewarded with a purse of $1 million (Smith & Wood, 2003). For the final episode of season one of Survivor, over 50 million people watched (Magder, 2009). As of September 2012, Survivor is still part of American Idol is a reality singing talent contest on FOX that first aired in 2002. At the beginning of each season, American Idol opens with audition episodes, showcasing memorable auditions from around the country. Contestants sing in front of three judges and are either invited t o the next round or not. The next few rounds consist of various singing competitions after which some contestants are eliminated by the judges. Once the contestants are whittled down to 24, audience members get to vote for their favorite finalists week aft er week. Performers with the lowest number of votes are sent home and the eventual winner is awarded with a recording contract (Bell, 2009; Jenkins, 2009 The Bac helor was introduced in 2002 (Gray, 2009 ). On the show, 25 women compete for a marriage proposal from one man. Each week, the bachelor goes on multiple dates with one or several of the women. At the end of each episode, one or more contestants are eliminat ed in a ceremony during which the bachelor hands roses to the women he chooses to stay. Each season ends with a marriage proposal. A spin off version was created called The Bachelorette on which the situation is reversed and 25 men compete for the love of a single woman (Gray, 2009 ). As of September 2012, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette programming.

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20 There has been much specu reality television is (Biressi & Nunn, 2005; Holmes, 2006; Kilborn, 1994; King, 2006; McGoldrick, 2004; Ogd o vibrancy and spontaneity of real evidence that a reality program is depicting real life is the w tell e different subgenres of reality life events depicted and all are concerned to extract the maximum entertainment potential from the 425). This entertainment factor has led some to question how much of reality programming is factual. The actuality of events in reality programming has been deemed questionable and contrived (Chvasta & Fassett, 2003; Godard, 2003; Kilborn, 1994; Roth, 200 3). In particular, some producers employ a reconstruction technique in which an event is reproduced to be filmed. No matter how much producers attempt to keep reenactments true to the original event, the added element of drama is usually apparent (Kilborn, 1994 ). Roth specifically describes the reality show Survivor Boorstin initiated research on pseudo events which the author states is a result of with event, which includes an event that is loosely connected to reality being deliberatel y create d to

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21 be reported on (Roth, 2003; Boorstin, 1964 portrayal of Survivor was also not explained if the Survivor locations were filmed as is or if producers had spruced them up before th e castaways arrived (Roth, 2003 ). Roth s Survivor In addition to the events on reality TV, viewers and reviewers have questioned the authenticity of people shown on reality programs; there has been spe culation that of the performers (Baker, 2003 ; Couldry, 2009 ; Ruoff, 2002 Big Brother 3 us denials The casting process has been criticized; people he editing process has been accused of creating characters ou t of real people (Halbert, 2003; Vrooman, 2003 ). Halbert states that It takes hundreds or thousands of hours of footage to construct a 30 60 minute program and editorial genius can erase the bana lity of human life. authenticity for the masses Survivor is constructed and me TV simulations of themselves (2003, p. 49) The performers th emselves have complained about their portrayal on television, specifically in regard to the editing process (Halbert, 2003; Roth, 2003 ; Ruoff, 2002). After initially approving the series before it aired, the Loud family, documented by An American Family c

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22 Survivor fame criticizes editing for the negative image of her portr ayed on the show (Halbert, 2003 ). Craig Gilbert (the producer of An American Family Whatever the issues surrounding reality television, the assumption of viewers is that the shows are presenting the real world (Kilborn 1994). In regard to fiction television shows, however, what is shown on television has been shown to skew Assad & Tamborini, 2003; Gerbner & Gross, 1976). Involvement/Engagement Engagement with a form of media, also referred to as involvement, means a indicates a higher level of viewing than simply watching a television show or flipping through a magazine. According to program that causes someone to want to watch it, to be attentive to it, to recommend it specific program every wee k or talked with a friend about the storyline on a drama that both watch has experienced engagement. Krugman was one of the first researchers to discuss involvement. Krugman differentiated between low and high involvement (1965; 1966). According to the aut hor, low involvement is regarded as a lack of personal attachment to a form of media while

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23 ute that direct personal experience (Krugman, 1966, p. 583). reoccupied with and muse upon media characters, to talk about them with others, to relate their circumstances with experience engagement with a because of the program. Parasocial Relationships One aspect of media involvement is parasocial relationships (Nordlund, 1978; Rubin & Pers and Wohl. The phrase was developed in order to name the phenomena of mass media performers being revered as a peer by audience members. The authors posit that parasocial relationship sided, nondialectical, performers directly address the audience in a conversational manner and tone. Viewers involved in parasocial interaction think of the performer as a friend, and have come to depend and rely on the performer to appear at regular times. Furthermore, over time, the viewer comes to beli eve that he or she knows the performer more familiarly than any other spectators (Horton & Wohl, 1956).

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24 A spectator can withdraw from a parasocial relationship at any time; specifically, parasocial relationship. Granted, a spectator can attempt to contact the performer or technicians involved with the performance, but these actions are not considered to be a part of the parasocial interaction (Horton & Wohl, 1956). Horton and Wohl cite th e difference between theater and mass media (specifically, radio and television). The authors point out that the theater is a temporary performance. At the end of a show, th e actors are released from the characters they play and take their bows as their true selves. However, mass media are different because radio and television continually toggle between the factual world and the fictional world (Horton & Wohl, 1956). Parasoc ial relationships can form between a spectator and public figures, fictional characters, puppets given personalities, theatrical interviewers (Horton & Wohl, 1956, p. 216). The authors explain that the effects of parasocial relationships can vary greatly, to day life to some degree. An example is given of a spectator participating in a parasocia column. Her life had been so altered by an infatuation with a local television star, she could not sleep and had completely lost interest in all other men. This is cited as an extreme example of a parasoc ial relationship effect. However, the authors point out, talking with friends about something a character said or taking care to not make plans

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25 during the time a favorite television program airs is responding in a comparable way, just to a lesser extent (H orton & Wohl, 1956). Since Horton and Wohl gave it a name, parasocial interaction has been studied extensively in mass communication (Alperstein, 1991; Ashe & McCutcheon, 2001; Auter, 1992; Cohen, 1997; Cole & Leets, 1999; Dhanda, 2011; Dyer, 2011; Eyal & Cohen, 2006; Hoffner 1996; Levy, 1979; Miller, 1983; Perse & Rubin, 1989; Phelps, 2011; Rosengren & Windahl, 1972; Rubin & McHugh, 1987; Rubin, Perse & Powell, 1985; Sood & Rogers, 2000; Theran, Newberg, & Gleason 2010; Turner, 1993). The 1980s in particu lar was a time in which much parasocial relationship research was completed (Miller, 1983; Perse & Rubin, 1989; Rubin & McHugh, 1987; Rubin et al., 1985; Rubin & Rubin, 1985). The most relevant studies will be discussed below. Many studies on parasocial in teraction attempt to answer the question: what makes a person develop a parasocial relationship ( Ashe & McCutcheon, 2001; Chory Assad & Cicchirillo, 2005; Chory Assad & Yanen, 2005; Dhanda, 2011; Nordlund, 1978; Rosengren & Windahl, 1972; Rubin et al., 198 5 )? Specifically, this type of research has attempted to discover different psychological predictors of parasocial interaction. Parasocial interaction has been researched in regard to loneliness, particularly in uses and gratifications research, with mixed re sults (Ashe & McCutcheon, 2001; Chory Assad & Yanen, 2005; Dhanda, 2011; Nordlund, 1978; Rosengren & Windahl, 1972; Rubin et al., 1985). Rosengren and Windahl explored mass media as a functional alternative to human needs not being met by outside source s (1972). For example, the authors cite the need of social interaction. They claim that in order to meet this need, a person needs to exhibit certain characteristics; namely, extroversion and empathy. If an

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26 introvert who is low on empathy does not have his or her need for social interaction met Rubin also mentioned that parasocial relationships can act as a substitute for interpersonal relationships (1985). The authors described mass media as acting as a functional alternative to interpersonal or group relationships. Media interaction, Nordlund (1978) explains, includes parasocial interaction. As phenomena as constituent elements of an overarching, more multifaceted phenomena way for audience members to achieve unmet social needs. If one does not receive In 2001, Ashe an d McCutcheon hypothesized that shyness and loneliness would be predictors of how strongly one felt about his or her favorite celebrity. The authors also proposed that visibility of the favorite celebrity would have an impact on this relationship: the highe r the visibility, the more strongly shyness and loneliness would interaction to a c elebrity is either very weak or non Researchers also found loneliness to not be a significant predictor of parasocial relationships ( Rubin et al., 1985). This particular study looked solely at parasocial interaction with local televisio n newscasters. The authors concede, however, that their sample did not include people

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27 who were very lonely; there was not much variance found on the loneliness scale that was used (Rubin et al., 1985 ). In another study that examined loneliness and parasoci al interaction Chory Assad and Yanen studied how parasocial interaction related to identification, wishful identification, hopelessness and loneliness (2005). The authors found that loneliness did not affect parasocial interaction but gender did (women we re more likely to form parasocial relationships than were men). The authors also created four hierarchical regression models designed to predict the four types of involvement they studied. The r of cohabitants, work/volunteer status, and pet owning status. The second block included hopelessness variables. The authors discovered that the addition of the hopelessness variables improved the parasocial interaction prediction model. All the variables together predicted 20% of variance in parasocial interaction (Chory Assad & Yanen, 2005). A thesis published in 2011 also examined loneliness and other possible predictors of parasocial interaction (Dhanda). The author surveyed respondents using the paras ocial interaction scale, a loneliness scale and several other scales measuring psychological attributes such as empathy, depression and self esteem. Controlling for age, gender, education, income and relationship status, Dhanda found several significant pr edictors of parasocial interaction: empathy, extraversion, companionship loneliness and isolation loneliness. Social loneliness, however, was not found to be a significant predictor of parasocial interaction (Dhanda, 2011). Empathy was also studied as a pr edictor of parasocial interaction in a 2005 study by Chory Assad and Cicchirillo. The authors researched whether viewer empathy and

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28 affective orientation predicted how that viewer identified with a favorite television character. The authors defined empathy and affective orientation as the tendency to consider and use emotions to guide communication. They found that affective orientation did predict identification with the s a nd viewer empathy partially did (Chory Assad & Cicchirillo, 2005). C ole and Leets used attachment theory to discover how attachment styles affect parasocial relationships (1999). The authors examined how likely people with three different attachment sty les (Secure, Avoidant and Anxious Ambivalent) were to form parasocial relationships. A survey was administered to respondents using the parasocial interaction scale and two attachment measures. The authors found that respondents with an Anxious Ambivalent attachment style were most likely to form parasocial relationships with a favorite television performer (Cole & Leets, 1999). Anxious Ambivalent attachment style is represented by a negative view of oneself and an idealized view of a relationship partner ( Collins & Read, 1990; Feeney & Noller, 1992). Much research has been conducted comparing parasocial relationships to interpersonal ones (Perse & Rubin, 1989; Rosengren & Windahl, 1972; Rubin & McHugh, 1987; Turner, 1993). In 1987, Rubin & McHugh posited th at the development of parasocial relationships parallels the development of interpersonal relationships, or initial attraction and, over time, as uncertainty about the other party is lessened, attraction increases and the relationship grows. This is known as uncertainty reduction

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29 theory (Berger & Calabrese, 1975). Rubin and McHugh delivered a survey that included use of the parasocial interaction scale, a scale test ing how important the respondents deemed establishing a relationship with their favorite television performer, the length of time respondents had been exposed to their favorite television performer and a scale heir favorite television performer. The results of the study showed that attraction for a performer was positively correlated to engaging in a parasocial relationship with that performer and toward perceived importance for establishing a relationship. Howe ver, the length of time exposed to a performer was not found to be an important aspect of parasocial interaction (Rubin & McHugh, 1987). Perse and Rubin also researched parasocial relationships in terms of interpersonal ones (1989). The authors used the f ramework of interpersonal rel ationships to shed light on how parasocial relationships are constructed. A particular area of interest in this research was a proponent of uncertainty reduction theory: attributional confidence, or feeling confident about the ability to predict the feelings of a person with whom one is in a relationship. The authors claim that the longer one is acquainted with and the more one knows about the other person, the higher the fidence, then, contributes to fans of television soap operas. It was found that length of viewing time of a program did influence parasocial relationships, albeit indirectly through increased attributional confidence. The authors state that uncertainty reduction theory provides an explanation for why parasocial relationships are formed (Perse & Rubin, 1989).

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30 Parasocial interaction has been studied in regard to old age (Miller, 1983). Miller gives reasons w hy older viewers may experience higher instances of parasocial relationships: because of the higher incidence of social isolation caused by declining health, loss of friends through death, and isolation caused by a lessened ab ility to pay for or maintain means of transportation, many older adults are expected to be high parasocial users of television (1983, p. 2) program viewing was not supporte d. Miller states that because of the type of sample gathered for the study (predominately older females living in a senior citizen high rise building), the results might be atypical and unable to be generalized to a larger population. The author also conce des that there simply might not be a relationship between age and the forming of parasocial relationships (Miller, 1983). Parasocial interaction has also been studied in regard to young age ( Hoff n er 1992; Theran et al., 2010). In 1992, Hoffner delivered s urveys regarding favorite television characters to children aged 7 to 12. On the survey, respondents named their favorite television characters and answered questions about their traits. The survey also contained the parasocial interaction scale and items measuring wishful identification: found that the formation of parasocial relationships with male characters was predicted by attractiveness and intelligence for girls a nd by attractiveness, intelligence and strength for boys. Parasocial relationships with female characters were predicted by attractiveness only for girls. Too few boys listed females as favorite characters to analyze that particular subgroup (Ho ffner 1996 ).

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31 Another study surveyed adolescent females in regard to parasocial interactions with female celebrities. For the survey, the authors used the parasocial interaction scale, an emotional intensity scale, a media figure questionnaire and a scale measuring p arental attachment. Results showed that 94% of respondents were engaged in a parasocial relationship of some sort (Theran et al., 2010). Parasocial interaction has been studied in regard to television news viewing (Levy, 1979; Rubin et al., 1985). In 1979, parasocial interaction with a newscaster, the more news a viewer will watch. The People who watch television news engage in varying degrees of para social interaction with t he news personae. Those viewers who find the para social relationship particularly attractive or gratifying increase their exposure in As for why people form parasocial relationships with ne wscasters specifically, the author included parasocial interaction propositions in the survey with which respondents ind icated a level of agreement. Fifty two percent of the respondents agreed that almost p. 72). Furthermore, 25% of respondents reported that they are upset when their favorite newscaster is out on vacation. In the same study for which the oft used parasocial interaction scale was developed, researchers tested if lonely people used local tele vision news to meet social needs, if those people became dependent on the news program and if they developed a parasocial relationship with a favorite newscaster (Rubin et al., 1985). As mentioned previously, this study did not find loneliness to be a pred ictor of parasocial relationships with local newscasters (Rubin et al., 1985).

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32 Parasocial interaction has been examined in regard to soap operas (Rubin & Perse, 1989). As mentioned previously, Rubin and Perse concluded that uncertainty reduction was a reas on college students form parasocial relationships with soap opera classmates they liked and disliked to their answers on items asking about soap opera characters they liked and disliked. Viewers were found to use interpersonal constructs when discussing the soap opera characters. This makes sense, according to the 73). A qualitative study by Sood and Rogers published in 2000 examined parasocial interactions with an Indian soap opera called Hum Log The authors examined why viewers wrote 400,000 letters to the network that aired the program and the actors and actresses that appeared on it. T hey identified five dimensions that were present in the 763 letters they sampled: affective interaction, cognitive interaction, behavioral interaction, referential involvement and critical involvement (Sood & Rogers, 2000). In recent years, parasocial inte raction has been studied in newer forms of media (Ballatine & Martin, 2005; Dyer, 2010; Phelps, 2011). Ballatine and Martin (2005) discussed the possibility of parasocial relationships in online communities, occurring between non participative and highly p articipative users. The authors offered research questions to guide future studies. For a m social media. The author administered a survey about favorite celebrities and social media sites to a snowball sample. Phelps found that 47.8% of respondents followed

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33 their favorite celebrity on Facebook while 43.4% followed their favorite celebrity on Twitter Furthermore, 16.7% of respondents reported that they checked their social networking sit e of choice for their favorite celebrity daily (Phelps, 2011). A 2010 m parasocial interaction. For this research, the author did a qualitative study of focus arch questions sought to discover the nature of relationships viewers form with reality show characters. Acting as moderator, Dyer divided the group into two smaller sets, separated by gender. The author claimed a minimal role in the conversation during ea ch focus group, speaking only when posing questions to start the discussion down a certain path or to get it back on track. Dyer television, how often they watched ea ch genre and how they connected with the characters of reality television. para social relationships are likely to form in reality programs as much, or even more than relat relationships with reality stars. However, this research is slightly more focused, as it seeks to study paras ocial relationships with specifically wealthy reality show characters. engagin g in parasocial interaction with stars whose wealth is a topic of the show on

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34 well? Parasocial Interaction Scale The parasocial interaction scale was developed in 1985 fo r a study on parasocial relationships with local television newscasters (Rubin et al.) Each item on the scale offers a statement with which a respondent can choose one of five responses, ranging Examples of it ems on the scale include: cale consisted of 29 The condensed 20 alpha of .93 and a mean response score of 2.70 with a standard deviation of .68. Many researchers have since used the parasocial interaction scale for their own studies (Auter, 1992; Cole & Leets, 1999; Dhanda, 2011; Hoffner 1996; Perse & Rubin, 1989; Ru bin & McHugh, 1987; Rubin & Perse, 1987; Theran et al., 2010; Turner, 1993). Four years after introducing their original scale, Perse and Rubin further condensed the scale to a 10 item version was .83. In 19 92, Auter studied the validity of the 20 item version of the scale. This time, A. Rubin et al. (1985) scale is indeed pa

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35 Cultivation Theory Cultivation theory was proposed by Gerbner and Gross (1976) and claims that television shapes the way people view the world. Television viewers, especially those class ified as heavy viewers, will, according to cultivation theory, believe the world to truly be like how it is presented to them on television. This is rooted in the way the television world differs from the real world. For instance, Gerbner and Gross claim t hat industrial and traffic accidents 179). It is disconnects such as these that cause people to get distorted views of the real world. In their research, the authors discovered that from 1967 75, action shows contained the han half of all prime Gerbner and Gross backed up cultivation theory with surveys in which it was shown that heavy television viewers saw the world as more dangerous than it really was. Respondents indicated the amount of television they watched and were classified as light or heavy television viewers; those who watched two hours or less per day were considered light viewers and those who watched four hours or more per day were considere answers were either slanted toward the television world or the real world. For the aforementioned it

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36 (Gerbner & Gro ss, 1976, p. 191). Gerbner and Gross summed up cultivation theory by well as in mass produced drama) may cultivate exaggerated assumptions about the extent of threat Gross, 1976, pg. 193). believe tha t people only look out for their own interests. The researchers developed a three agree that in dealing with people, and that most people would take advantage of you if they got the he alpha of .68 (Gerbner et al., 1980). This represents a moderate internal consistency between the three items on the index; respondents generally answered each question the same (Gerbner et al., 1980, p. 17). Gerbner et al., 1980). Mainstreaming involves the converging of deviating views of the real world into a standardized one. T his happens as viewers gain (mis ) perceptions about the real world through watching television (Gerbner et al., 1980). The researche rs explain that

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37 heavy viewers in those demographic groups whose light viewers hold d ( Gerbner et al., 1980, real life experiences of the viewer mirrors what the viewer sees on television. Resonance can also reinforce cultivation perceptions (Gerbner et al., 198 0). The authors clarify: When what people see on television is most congruent with everyday reality (or even perceived reality), the combination may result in a coherent and cultivati on. Thus, the congruence of the television world and real life fied cultivation patterns (1980, p. 15) Since 1976, the theory of cultivation has been examined extensively (Chorry Assad & Tamborini, 20 03; Cohen & Weimann, 2000; Doob & Macdonald, 1979; Elliott & Slater, 1980; Gerbner, 1998; Gerbner et al., 1980; Gerbner, Gross, Morgan & Signorielli, 1994; Morgan & Signorielli, 1990; Perse, 1986; Perse, 1990; Romer, Jamieson & Aday, 2003; Shanahan & Morga n, 1999; Signorielli, 2005). Cultivation theory has also been examined in regard to television topics other than violence and mistrust. Cohen and Weimann studied cultivation theory in respect to different genres of television (2000). The authors surveyed I sraeli youth regarding their television viewing habits, several demographics, the Mean World Index and the Cultivation Index. However, due to low alpha scores (.53 and .25 respectively), the three items on each index were not used as a scale but separately from each other. The authors found that religiosity affects cultivation greatly, demographic variables were important in

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38 comprehending cultivation and older youths were more susceptible to the cultivation effect than younger youths. Chory Assad and Tambo rini examined perceptions of physicians based on representations of doctors in prime time fiction programs (2003). A previous content analysis by the same authors showed that physicians were being shown in a less positive angle than they were previously (C hory Assad & Tamborini, 2001). Their survey for the cultivation research showed that increased negative portrayals of doctors in prime physicians (Chory Assad & Tamborini, 2003). C hory Assad and Tamborini state: time fiction programs featuring physicians as main characters was associated with perceiving doctors as more uncaring, cold, unfriendly, Like parasoci al interaction, cultivation theory has also been examined in regard soap opera viewing habits, general television viewing habits, the length of time the respondents watched s oap operas, how many times per week the respondents watched soap operas and their motives for watching soap operas. The survey also asked several cultivation number of marriages ( out of 1 1986, p. 181). Perse found that soap opera viewing exposure (how many times per week the respondents (Perse, 1986, p. 184). Howev er, the relationship was not deemed a considerable one by the author.

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39 Materialism and Wealth Cultivation theory has also been examined in regard to materialism (Harmon, 2001; Shrum, Burroughs & Rindfleish, 2005). ne cessarily account for how many material possessions he or she owns, but rather how important he or she believes material possessions to be. For example, the Merriam Webster dictionary defines materialism as a preoccupation with or stress upon material rat Materialism, 2012 ). Rassuli and Hollander materialistic may indeed lead a person to obtain many material possessions; however, one d oes not necessarily have to do that in order to be materialistic. In 2001, Harmon conducted two secondary analyses to discover if heavy television viewing was positively correlated with materialistic values; one analysis was done using Simmons Market Rese a rch Bureau data and the other with General Social Survey data. While the Simmons Market Research Bureau analysis did not show any strong association, the General Social Survey analysis did on three variables. For the GSS analysis, Harmon found that indiv iduals who watched more television were also before others and that having a high income is important (Harmon, 2001). Another study also examined cultivation theo ry and materialism (Shrum et al., 2005) The authors hypothesized that the amount of television a person views will be higher in individuals who pay more attention when watching television. The authors created surveys measuring the amount of television viewers watched, how much attention viewers paid to television when watching it, and materialism. To measure

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40 item version of the material values scale. They found that their hypotheses were supported by the results of the survey. Materialism and Wealth Today 11. The protestors of the movement Times, 2012). The protestors claimed themselves (New York Times, 2012). The Republican nominee for the 2012 presidential election, Mitt Romney, also put a spotlight on the topic of wealth (Associated Press, 2012). As a former businessman, Romney built up a sizeable personal fortune of about $250 million. Democrats used that against Romney, claiming that his money put him out of touch with most Americans. In his own defense, Romney stated that criticizing his previous Material Values Scale The material values scale was created by Richins and Dawson in 1992. This 18 item scale was developed to measure the level of materialism in respondents. To determine what was popularly viewed as materialistic values, the authors interviewed 11 adults with open ended questions. They asked the participant s to describe the values and attitudes of people they knew that they considered to be materialistic. Descriptions that were mentioned frequently by the participants were turned into items on the scale.

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41 The scale contains three subscales: success, centralit y and happiness. The success subscale had coefficient alphas that varied between .74 and .78, the centrality subscale had coefficient alphas that ranged between .71 and .75 and the happiness subscale had coefficient alphas that varied between .73 and .83. The scale as a whole had coefficient alphas that ranged between .80 an d .88 (Richins & Dawson, 1992). In 2004, Richins reexamined the material values scale and attempted to create shorter versions. Richins conducted an individual item analysis on each of t he original on the scale, the author created a 15 item version of the scale. Richins claimed the newer version to be more reliable and suggested that any future researc h using the material values scale utilize the 15 item scale was found to be .87. The author also experimented with short scales derived from the material values scale; 9 item, 6 item and 3 item short scales wer e attempted. The Basis for Study There is a lack of research that specifically focuses on how exposure to reality television shows predicts cultivation perceptions. As cultivation theory focuses on the real world, this dearth of research is unfortunate. It seems to be a natural subject for examination. There has been some research that combines culti vation theory and involvement cultivation theory did not specifically measure parasocial interaction; however, the author did take affinity into account. Citing a 1985 study, P

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42 investigation found that affinity was the most significant predictor of parasocial Perse examined cultivation theory, involvement and local television news (Perse, 1990). Again, parasocial interaction was not explicitly tested. The author measured whether viewers who were more involved when watching their local television news felt unsafe. Perse found that high levels of involvement did not in fact predict a higher sense of decreased personal safety (Perse, 1990). The basis for this study is an attempt to measure if parasocial interaction cultivates materialism in viewers This study will particularly focus on reality television. In an attempt to further narrow the f ocus of this research, this study attempts to examine one particular type of reality show: docusoaps. This type of show revolves around a storyline similar to a fictional soap opera but involves real people in what is assumed to be real situations. The sam e characters appear from episode to episode and season to The Real World The Real Housewives Bad Girls Club Docusoaps are appropriate for this research because they fea ture the same parasocial relationship more likely than a reality show with different characters every week. To narrow the study even further, the author will specificall y examine docusoaps that predominately feature wealthy individuals. Docusoaps about wealthy people offer a peek inside their lives, giving viewers a chance to see how the rich live. The purpose of this study is to measure the likelihood of viewers experien cing a high level of materialism based on parasocial relationships with wealthy performers in reality shows.

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43 possessions, like the ones they see on these programs, are importa nt in their own lives. Research Questions Therefore, this study proposes the following research questions: RQ 1: Is the amount of exposure to reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively correlated with materialism in viewers? RQ 2: Is the duration of exposure to reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively correlated with materialism in viewers? RQ 3: Are parasocial relationships with performers on reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively correlated with materialism in viewers?

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44 CHAPTER 3 METHOD rested in states that online surveys in particular are becoming more common; however, the author does point out that it is questionable whether those surveyed will be generalizable to a greater population (2010). In an attempt to answer the proposed research questions, this study posed a survey to fans of docusoaps featuring wealthy individuals. During the summer of 2012, the survey was posted on Facebook fan sites of these programs. The target population for the survey was individuals who have a parasocial relationship with a wealthy docusoap star; posting and/or reading online content devoted to a particular show would indicate parasocial interaction with one or mo re characters on the program. Because the survey was posted on a fan site, which a person who is not involved with the show will probably not visit, it is believed that those who are exposed to the survey will be involved in a parasocial relationship with a wealthy reality show character on some level. Sample A non probability sample was collected via Facebook pages. The usable responses created a total sample of 340 responses. No incentive was offered to participants. The survey was posted to the walls of Facebook sites for the programs (when user posting was allowed by administrators) and messages asking viewers to

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45 take the survey were sent to users active on the pages. Originally, 2,465 Facebook messages were sent to potential participants and 1,714 fo llow up messages were sent. This made for a total of 4,179 Facebook messages sent with a request to take the survey. The response rate was 12.3%. However, this does not take into account the Facebook page wall and chose to take the survey. Surveyed Reality Shows This study only surveyed fans of programs that were on the air at the time that the survey was delivered (summer of 2012). This was done in an attempt to have the respondents answer the survey while actively experiencing a parasocial relationship. The reality shows on whose Facebook fan pages the survey was posted are: Tardy for the Wedding on Bravo, Real Housewives of New York City on Bravo, Real Housewives of New Jersey on Bravo, Kendra on Top on WE TV, Hollywood Exes on VH1, Giuliana & Bill on the Style network and Basketball Wives on VH1. Fans of the show Keeping Up with the Kardashians on E! were also surveyed. However, the Facebook page for this show was not able to be posted on by users other than the It is worth noting that all of these programs were predominately watched by female viewers. For instance for the month of July 2012, Real Housewives of New York City had over three times as many female viewers as male. That same month, Keeping Up with the Kardashians and Hollywood Exes were both watched by about 2.5 as many women as men. Kendra on Top there were still twice as many female viewers than men ( Nielsen NPOWER, 2012 ).

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46 The program on Bravo followed Kim Zolciak (fro m Real Housewives of Atlanta fame) as she planned her wedding to Atlanta Falcons Atlanta mansion and the cost of the extravagant wedding. Viewers witnessed drama between Kim and her m other and maid of honor as well as all the stress that planning a wedding in a few months brings. Real Housewives of New York City on Bravo stars a group of high society women living and socializing in New York City. Viewers of the show get treated to lots of arguments between the ladies of varying intensities, more than one lavish vacation and views of swanky New York City hot spots. Real Housewives of New Jersey on Bravo, is almost the same as its sister show except that the women live in New Jersey. Dram a between one character (Teresa) and each of the stars occurs at some point throughout the season and the women and their families all go on an extravagant vacation to Napa Valley. Discussions of whether or not Teresa will go to jail pop up repeatedly whil e the characters relax in their multi million dollar homes. Kendra on Top follows Kendra Wilkinson, former girlfriend of Hugh Hefner, in her marriage to former NFL player Hank Baskett. Viewers watch Kendra as she navigates her career and family li fe. Things get tense between Kendra and her husband as Hank searches for a job. Hollywood Exes on VH1 stars the former wives of five celebrities. The show highlights the current ambitions of the women and how their famous ex husbands can still affect their lives.

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47 Giuliana & Bill features E! News host Giuliana Rancic and her husband, former Apprentice winner Bill Rancic. The program follows the couple in different business ventures and in their struggle to conceive. Basketball Wives on VH 1 follows ex wives and ex girlfriends of professional basketball players. The women lead lavish lives and go on expensive vacations. Viewers are witness to lots of interpersonal friction between the women. Keeping Up with the Kardashians on E! features the blended family of former Olympic gold medalist Bruce Jenner and his wife Kris. The cameras follow the clan as they pursue business ventures and relationships, go on extravagant vacations and fight adult daughters from a previous marriage, Kourtney, Kim and Khloe. Each show was chosen because the main characters can all be considered wealthy. They live in expensive homes and take vacations to exotic locations. They own m to worry about price tags. These shows feature real people (and real money), not characters dreamed up by a set of writers. For that reason, the author deemed these programs appropriate for the goal of this study. For an idea of how many viewers each sho w had, see Table 3 ratings. Each show had its own unique survey, as questions were adjusted to reflect the characters on each show. For instance, an item asking viewers to choose their favorite character from a list was diff erent for each show. For example, the character choices on the Real Housewives of New York City survey reflected the characters on that show while the character choices on Kendra on Top reflected the characters on that show.

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48 e of character was piped into questions about parasocial interaction. For example, if a viewer chose Royce as his or her favorite character on Basketball Wives think Royce is like an ol The surveys were opened at different times, depending on when the show premiered on the air. For instance, the first completed responses for Basketball Wives and Giuliana & Bill were collected on May 23, 2012, as they were on the air at the begi nning of the summer. However, the first completed response for the Hollywood Exes survey was collected on July 2, 2012 as the show debuted at the end of June 2012. All surveys closed on August 28, 2012. See Table 3 2 for first completed response dates for each show along with the total number of completed responses for each show. Survey The survey consisted of an informed consent page indicating that respondents needed to be over the age of 18, demographic information, the 15 item parasocial interaction sca le, an item measuring amount of exposure to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals, an item measuring duration of exposure to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals, the 15 item material values scale and a scale measuring personal experience with wealth. Two additional optional questions were included asking respondents to list what they liked best about the shows and what they liked best about their favorite characters. Several foil questions asking respondents how often they viewed particular sh ows were included in the hope of concealing the true purpose o f the study. See A ppendices A H for the surveys for each show.

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49 Demographic Information Respondents were asked to answer age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, income and education level demographic it ems consistent with cultivation analysis in the past (Gerbner & Gross, 1976). The choices for race match the choices give n on the 2000 U.S. Census (Grieco & Cassidy, 2001). Also, consistent with the census, a question regarding Hispanic origin was on the s urvey. The choices for education level were also the same choices as given on the 2000 U.S. Census (Bauman & Graf, 2003). Income level ranges were chosen to match the IRS 2012 federal income tax brackets for single filers (IRS, 2011). The demographic infor mation will be used as control variables when analyzing the data. Foil Questions In an attempt to shield the nature of the study, respondents were asked how often they watched particular shows. Some shows listed were other reality shows about wealthy peopl e and some were scripted shows. These questions were included merely to try to conceal the goal of the study and were not used in analysis. Amount of Exposure Respondents were asked to indicate about how many hours per week they watch reality shows featuri ng wealthy indiv iduals. Duration of Exposure Respondents were asked to indicate for about how many weeks they have watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals. Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents responded on a five point Likert scale ranging item parasocial inte raction scale as given by

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50 Cole and Leets (1999). Cole and Leets found the scale to have an alpha of .87 (1999). The items were modified to specifically reflect reality show parasoci al relationships. A lead in item asked respondents to identify their favorite wealthy reality show character had its own survey, though the items (except the aforementione d one listing main characters) remained the same on each survey. Material Values Scale Respondents answered the 15 item material values scale as proposed by Richins (2004). The questions were designed to measure materialism in participants and Richins foun the items had to be reverse scored. Experience with Wealth Respondents answered a 7 item experience with wealth scale devised by the current experience in his or her own life with wealthy people. During analysis, the scale was used as a control variable. Optional Questions Two optional questions were included at the end of the survey. The first questio n asked respondents to list their favorite thing about watching the reality show for which they were surveyed. The second question asked them to list their favorite things about the favorite character they chose. Complications Initially, not many people to ok the surveys. For instance, within the first 24 hours, only one completed response was gathered. In an attempt to raise the number of

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51 nd asked to take the survey in the same fashion as the Keeping Up with the Kardashians survey. Because of the high volume of messages being sent to fans of television shows in a short amount of time, Facebook banned the author from sending messages on mor e than one occasion. After waiting about a day, message sending was able to be resumed. Furthermore, some reply messages were received by the author from fans long after the original message was sent requesting them to take part in the survey. In these mes filter. The author was also banned from posting the survey links to the Facebook pages for R eal Housewives of New Jersey and Real Housewives of New York City No message or alert was given to the author by the page administrators, but the option to post on the pages disappeared. Because fans were still freely posting on the pages, the author conc Data Collection The survey software Qualtrics was used for data collection Four hundred fifty two unique responses were recorded. However, upon closer inspection, several responses w ere either not complete and/or, despite the informed consent indicating respondents must be age 18 or older, had a self reported age under 18. These responses were removed from the study. This left a total N of 340.

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52 Table 3 e ratings. Show Season Finale Air Date Adult 18 49 Rating (Live + SD) Number of Viewers (in millions) Basketball Wives May 28, 2012 1.0 1.78 Giuliana & Bill June 5, 2012 Real Housewives of New Jersey September 23, 2012 1.6 3.41 he Wedding June 14, 2012 1.0 2.35 Keeping Up with the Kardashians September 16, 2012 1.8 3.57 Real Housewives of New York City October 1, 2012 .9 1.84 Hollywood Exes August 29, 2012 .5 .97 Kendra on Top July 31, 2012 Source: TVbythenumbers.com *S how was not in top 100 cable shows the night it aired; therefore, data are not available. Table 3 2. Completed responses by show. Show First Completed Response Collected Close Date Number of Completed Responses Basketball Wives May 23, 2012 August 28, 20 12 55 Giuliana & Bill May 23, 2012 August 28, 2012 51 Real Housewives of New Jersey May 23, 2012 August 28, 2012 65 Wedding May 25, 2012 August 28, 2012 43 Keeping Up with the Kardashians June 18, 2012 August 28, 2012 36 Real Ho usewives of New York City June 20, 2012 August 28, 2012 39 Hollywood Exes July 2, 2012 August 28, 2012 24 Kendra on Top July 11, 2012 August 28, 2012 27

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53 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS The survey results show that amount of exposure per week predicts materialism in a viewer, though the correlation is a slight one. However, a parasocial relationship with a character on a reality show featurin g wealthy individuals is a predictor of materialism in a viewer. The positive correlation remains significant even after introdu cing several control variables. Respondent Demographics computed. The author found the parasocial interaction scale to have a Cronba alpha of .92, the material values scale to Of the 340 usable responses, 93.8% of respondents were female and 6.2% were male. The average age of respondents was 36.84 years. Hispanic origin was ide ntified by 12.6% of respondents Race was coded as either white or non white. See T able 4 1 for the racial breakdown of respondents. Income levels for the study were derived from the 2012 IRS income tax brackets. See Table 4 2 for respondent income levels. Highest level of education completed, as consistent with the 2000 U.S. C ensus, were repo rted by respondents, as well. See Table 4 3 for education information. Scales Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents also answered the 15 item parasocial interaction scale. For each item, each respondent indicated his or her answer on a five point Likert scale ranging

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54 create his or her PSI score. The mean score for the parasocial int eraction scale was 3.52 with a standard deviation of .69. distributed. See Figure 4 1 for a graphic representation of the parasocial interaction scale score. Material Values Scale The material values scale also consist ed of 15 items. Respondents answered each item on a five The mean materialism score was 2.65 with a standa rd deviation of .63. The 2 for a graphical representation of the material values scale score. Experience with Wealth Scale The experience with wealth scale contained seven items meant to gauge a r answered each item on a five score for th e experience with wealth scale was 2.59 with a standard deviation of .75. 3 for a graphic representation of the experience with wealth scale score. Amount of Exposure When analyzing the survey data, not all responses for amount of exposure to reality shows featuri ng wealthy individuals were usable. For instance, because it was an open

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55 For responses in which an actual number could not be gleaned, the response was depends when and what is written, it was recorded as zero hours per week. If a value over 168 was given (as there are only 168 hours in a week), it was deleted. Two outliers (157 and 100) were also deleted. This left a total of 312 res ponses able to be analyzed, ranging from 0 hours per week to 66 hours per week. Of these, the mean was 6.28 with a standard deviation of 7.77. The median was response was 4 hours per week. See Figure 4 4 for a graphic representation of the amount of hours per week respondents watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals. Duration of Exposure Responses for duration of exposure to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals were again not all usable. This was an open ended response item as well, and also garnered, the response was deleted from analysis. Responses that obviously indicated how o 3 e was recorded. If the answer was given in years or months, it was converted to weeks 236 responses able to be analyzed, ranging from 0 weeks to 364 weeks. The mean was 57 .61 weeks with a standard deviation of 77.35. The median response was 30 weeks.

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56 See Figure 4 5 for a graphic representation of the amount of weeks respondents have watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals. Mean Parasocial Interaction Scale Score s by Show To compare fans of each show to each other, the mean parasocial interaction scale score was computed for each show. Scores ranged from 3.305 to 3.933. Fans of Giuliana & Bill and Kendra on Top exhibited the highest mean PSI scale scores and were the o nly ones to get above 3.9. See T able 4 4 for a representation of this data. Mean Material Values Scale Scores by Show To compare fans of each show to each other, the mean material values scale score was computed for each show. Scores r anged from 2.462 to 2.794. See T able 4 5 for a representation of this data. Research Questions In order to answer the research questions, three linear regression analyses were performed in SPSS from the data collected from survey respondents. Materialism scores were compa red to amount of exposure to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals, duration of exposure to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals and the parasocial interaction scale. Research Question 1 Research Q uestion 1 of this study asked: is the amount o f exposure to reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively correlated with materialism in viewers? The research discovered that yes, amount of exposure to reality show featured rich people is positively correlated with materialism in viewers. In ord er to answer the research About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows

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57 Beta was .145. The r 2 equaled .021; hours per week of exposure accounted for 2.1% of the variance in materialism. This linear regression had a p value of .010. Therefore, according to the results of this study, amount of time spent watching reality shows featuring wealth y individuals is a predictor of materialism at the p<.05 level. See Figure 4 6 for data from this regression. Research Question 2 Research Q uestion 2 of this study asked: is the duration of exposure to reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively co rrelated with materialism in viewers? The research showed that no, duration of exposure to reality shows featuring rich performers was not positively correlated with materialism in viewers. To answer this research ial values scale were compared to their About how many weeks have you watched reality shows statistically significant. See Figure 4 7 for data from this regression. Research Question 3 Research Q uestion 3 of this study asked: are parasocial relationships with performers on reality docusoaps of wealthy individuals positively correlated with materialism in viewers? The study gave evidence to s upport that yes, parasocial interaction with rich performers on reality shows is positively correlated with materialism in viewers. In order t material values scale were compared to their scores on the parasocial interaction scale. The standardized Beta was .229. The r 2 equaled .052. T he parasocial interaction score accounted for 5.2% of the variance in materialism. T his linear regression had a p value of <.0001 making it statistically significant. See Figure 4 8 for data from this regression.

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58 Control Variables After it was discovered that a parasocial relationship with a wealthy reality show performer was a predictor of materialism in the viewer at the p<.0001 level, several control variables were introduced into the linear regression. Age, gender, ethnicity, race, income level, education level and experience with wealth were all controlled for in a scores. Each was con trolled for individually then as a group in a multiple regression. Results for grouped demographic control variables were taken with and without experience with wealth included. It was discovered that when any demographic variable except age or experience with wealth score was introduced into the linear regression as a single control variable, parasocial interaction with a wealthy reality show performer remained a predictor of materialism at the p<.0001 level. When age was controlled for, parasocial intera ction was a predictor of materialism at the p<.01 level. The data also show that age negatively predicts of materialism at the p<.0001 level and experience with wealth score is a predictor of materialism at the p<.01 level. See Figures 4 9 through 4 15 for data from these regressions. In fact, even when every demographic variable was controlled for at once in a multiple regression without experience with wealth scores included, parasocial interaction was still a predictor of materialism at the p<.0001 level When every demographic variable was controlled for at once in a multiple regression including experience with wealth scores, parasocial interaction was a predictor of materialism at the p<.01 level. See Figures 4 16 and 4 17 for data from these regressio ns. After data collection, it was concluded that the question regarding income level was not exactly clear. Respondents were not expressly told whether to list their

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59 individual or household income. This could have created some inconsistency in the data. Th erefore, a last multiple regression including all demographic variables except for income and including experience with wealth scores was conducted. See Figure 4 18 for data from this regression. The results of the survey show that while duration of exposu re to reality shows featuring wealthy individuals does not predict materialism in a viewer, amount of exposure per week does. Furthermore, a parasocial relationship with a character on a reality show featuring wealthy individuals is a predictor of material ism in a viewer. Additional Findings Interestingly, although previous research did not find a positive correlation between age and parasocial interaction (Miller, 1983), this study found age to be negatively correlated with parasocial interaction. In fact, the findings were significant at the p<.0001 level. This suggests that younger viewers are more likely to experience parasocial interaction (at least, with rich reality stars).

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60 Table 4 1. Reported races of respondents. Race Number Reported Percent Report ed White 228 67.1% Black or African American 75 22.1% Other Race 22 6.5% American Indian or Alaska Native 3 .9% Asian Indian 3 .9% Other Asian 3 .9% Chinese 2 .6% Filipino 2 .6% Native Hawaiian 1 .3% Guamanian or Chamorro 1 .3% No respondents id entified themselves as Samoan, Other Pacific Islander, Japanese, Korean or Vietnamese. Table 4 2. Reported income levels of respondents. Income Level Number Reported Percent Reported Not Over $8,700 55 16.2% Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350 98 28.8% Ov er $35,350 but not Over $85,650 121 35.6% Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650 45 13.2% Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 17 5% Over $388,350 4 1.2% Table 4 3. Reported education levels of respondents. Education Level Number Reported Percent Reported No Schooling Completed 2 .6% 9th Grade 4 1.2% 10th Grade 1 .3% 11th Grade 2 .6% 12th Grade, No Diploma 2 .6% High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED) 60 17.6% Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year 41 12.1% 1 or More Yea rs of College but No Degree 55 16.2% Associate Degree (for example: AA, AS) 56 16.5% BS) 72 21.1% MEng, Med, MSW, MBA) 29 8.5% Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) 13 3.8% Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD) 5 1.5%

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61 Table 4 4. Mean parasocial interaction scale scores by show. Show Mean PSI Scale Score Basketball Wives 3.305 3.496 Giuliana & Bill 3.916 Hollywood Exe s 3.511 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 3.611 Kendra on Top 3.933 Real Housewives of New Jersey 3.307 Real Housewives of New York City 3.328 Table 4 5. Mean material values scale scores by show. Show Mean MV Scale Score Basketball Wives 2.776 Be Tardy for the Wedding 2.687 Giuliana & Bill 2.624 Hollywood Exes 2.664 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 2.794 Kendra on Top 2.733 Real Housewives of New Jersey 2.546 Real Housewives of New York City 2.462

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62 Figure 4 1. Distribution of parasocia l interaction scale scores. Figure 4 2. Distribution of material values scale scores.

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63 Figure 4 3. Distribution of experience with wealth scale scores. Figure 4 4. Distribution of amount of exposure responses.

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64 Figure 4 5. Distribution of duration of exposure responses. Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.574 .047 55.274 .000 How many hours per week .012 .005 .145 2.589 .010 a. Dependent Variable: Materialism R 2 = .021 Adjusted R 2 = .018 Figure 4 6. Regression analysis for amount of exposure predicting materialism score.

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65 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.567 .049 5 2.172 .000 For how many weeks .001 .001 .104 1.595 .112 a. Dependent Variable: Materialism R 2 = .011 Adjusted R 2 = .007 Figure 4 7. Regression analysis for duration of exposure predicting materialism score. Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficient s Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 1.922 .172 11.146 .000 Parasocial Interaction .207 .048 .229 4.315 .000 a. Dependent Variable: Materialism R 2 = .052 Adjusted R 2 = .049 Figure 4 8. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score.

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66 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 3.081 .110 28.090 .000 Age .012 .003 .221 4.137 .000 2 (Constant) 2 .408 .222 10.838 .000 Age .010 .003 .183 3.409 .001 PSI Scale Score .171 .049 .186 3.467 .001 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .049 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .046 R 2 Model 2 = .082 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .076 Tolerance = .958 Figure 4 9. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age. Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.646 .035 75.001 .000 Gender .100 .142 .038 .703 .482 2 (Constant) 1.916 .173 11.085 .000 Gender .101 .138 .039 .732 .465 PSI Scale Score .207 .048 .229 4.314 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .001 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .001 R 2 Model 2 = .054 Adju sted R 2 Model 2 = .048 Tolerance = 1.000 Figure 4 10. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for gender.

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67 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. E rror Beta 1 (Constant) 2.655 .037 72.561 .000 Hispanic origin .021 .103 .011 .203 .839 2 (Constant) 1.924 .173 11.139 .000 Hispanic origin .044 .100 .023 .437 .663 PSI Scale Score .209 .048 .230 4.327 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .000 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .003 R 2 Model 2 = .053 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .047 Tolerance = .997 Figure 4 11. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for Hispanic origin.

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68 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.657 .060 44.593 .000 Race .007 .073 .005 .098 .922 2 (Constant) 1.922 .180 10.656 .000 Race .001 .071 .000 .009 .993 PSI S cale Score .207 .048 .229 4.308 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .000 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .003 R 2 Model 2 = .052 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .047 Tolerance = .999 Figure 4 12. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score pred icting materialism score, controlling for race. Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.757 .088 31.403 .000 Income .039 .030 .070 1.288 .199 2 (Constant) 1.969 .209 9. 403 .000 Income .012 .030 .021 .396 .693 PSI Scale Score .203 .049 .224 4.122 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .005 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .002 R 2 Model 2 = .053 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .047 Tolerance = .953 Figure 4 13. Regre ssion analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for income level.

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69 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.415 .173 13.952 .000 Ed ucation .023 .016 .076 1.396 .164 2 (Constant) 1.576 .251 6.276 .000 Education .030 .016 .100 1.887 .060 PSI Scale Score .217 .048 .239 4.501 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .006 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .003 R 2 Model 2 = .062 A djusted R 2 Model 2 = .057 Tolerance = .990 Figure 4 14. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for education level.

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70 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coeffic ients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.301 .121 18.942 .000 Experience with Wealth Scale Score .136 .045 .162 3.014 .003 2 (Constant) 1.611 .201 8.002 .000 Experience with Wealth Scale Score .128 .044 .153 2.909 .004 PSI Scale Score .2 02 .048 .222 4.237 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .026 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .023 R 2 Model 2 = .075 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .070 Tolerance = .998 Figure 4 15. Regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materia lism score, controlling for experience with wealth score.

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71 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.810 .216 12.988 .000 Age .012 .003 .219 3.763 .000 Gende r .065 .141 .025 .461 .645 Hispanic origin .076 .104 .040 .727 .467 Race .048 .075 .036 .642 .521 Income .018 .035 .032 .509 .611 Education .028 .018 .092 1.571 .117 2 (Constant) 2.030 .301 6.742 .000 Age .010 .003 .188 3.243 .001 Ge nder .081 .138 .031 .587 .558 Hispanic origin .082 .102 .043 .797 .426 Race .045 .073 .033 .611 .542 Income .003 .035 .005 .080 .936 Education .032 .017 .104 1.813 .071 PSI Scale Score .182 .050 .199 3.650 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Sc ale Score R 2 Model 1 = .059 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .041 R 2 Model 2 = .095 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .076 Tolerance = .932 Figure 4 16. Multiple regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hi spanic origin, race, income level and education level.

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72 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.617 .228 11.457 .000 Age .011 .003 .200 3.435 .001 Gender .053 .14 0 .020 .379 .705 Hispanic origin .087 .104 .046 .839 .402 Race .033 .074 .024 .437 .662 Income .032 .035 .057 .903 .367 Education .018 .018 .061 1.024 .307 Experience with Wealth Scale Score .118 .047 .140 2.478 .014 2 (Constant) 1.891 .30 6 6.189 .000 Age .009 .003 .172 2.970 .003 Gender .070 .138 .027 .507 .613 Hispanic origin .091 .102 .048 .896 .371 Race .031 .073 .023 .424 .672 Income .016 .035 .028 .459 .646 Education .023 .018 .076 1.294 .197 Experience with We alth Scale Score .106 .047 .126 2.262 .024 PSI Scale Score .174 .050 .190 3.501 .001 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .076 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .056 R 2 Model 2 = .109 Adjusted R 2 Model 2 = .087 Tolerance = .927 Figure 4 17. Multiple regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hispanic origin, race, income level, education level and experience with wealth score.

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73 Coefficients a Model Unstandardized Coefficients Stand ardized Coefficients t Sig. B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 2.645 .226 11.691 .000 Age .012 .003 .219 4.012 .000 Gender .059 .140 .023 .424 .672 Hispanic origin .078 .103 .041 .757 .449 Race .026 .074 .019 .351 .726 Education .013 .017 .043 .768 .443 Experience with Wealth Scale Score .111 .047 .131 2.364 .019 2 (Constant) 1.893 .305 6.202 .000 Age .010 .003 .181 3.307 .001 Gender .073 .137 .028 .533 .595 Hispanic origin .087 .101 .046 .859 .391 Race .028 .073 .021 .38 2 .703 Education .020 .017 .067 1.212 .226 Experience with Wealth Scale Score .102 .046 .121 2.219 .027 PSI Scale Score .177 .049 .193 3.594 .000 a. Dependent Variable: MV Scale Score R 2 Model 1 = .0 74 Adjusted R 2 Model 1 = .057 R 2 Model 2 = 109 Ad justed R 2 Model 2 = .090 Tolerance = 943 Figure 4 18. Multiple regression analysis for parasocial interaction score predicting materialism score, controlling for age, gender, Hispanic origin, race, education level and experience with wealth score.

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74 CH APTER 5 DISCUSSION As it turns out, there does seem to be a link between watching rich people on reality shows and aspiring for wealth. The results of this study show that there is a positive correlation between parasocial relationships with wealthy realit y show performers and materialism in viewers world. In fact, this research actually extends cultivation theory becaus e of its intense focus: the author did not simply study the amount of television in general the respondents watched but how much of a specific type of programming (docusoaps featuring wealthy people) they watched. By then surveying the respondents on how t he themes of the shows were present in their own lives (materialism), the author found support for cultivation theory. This study also extends cultivation theory by focusing on the reality television genre which consists of programming the audience is alre ady accepting as real life. Focusing the research even more was the introduction of the parasocial interaction scale. This scale measures how involved the respondents are with the show scores differentiated them from each other based on involvement with the show. Thus, the study contributes to parasocial relationship research by showing evidence for the notion hemes will affect their view of the world. T he correlation between parasocial interaction score and materialism score is significant at the p<.0 001 level; t his gives strong evidence that the two are truly linked.

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75 Explanation Parasocial relationships with r ich reality show performers may be linked with materialism because wealth is a central theme of this type of reality show. Viewers get an inside look at the lives of the rich and (somewhat) famous. Lavish houses, expensive cars, designer clothes, shopping a fly on the However, passively viewing the program is not enough to crave the type of lifestyle one sees. In order to envy a higher standard of living or be convinced that more money would equal more happiness, a viewer must be highly involved with the program. This is exhibited through a parasocial relationship. The viewer must be engaged with the storylines of the show, pic k sides during arguments between performers and care about what happens to the people on the show. More than any other factor tested by this study (amount of exposure per week, duration of exposure, experience with wealth, or demographic information), bein g involved in a parasocial relationship with a rich reality show performer is the strongest predictor of materialism in a viewer. Another interesting finding of the study was that there is also a positive correlation between how many hours per week a viewe r spends watching reality shows featuring wealthy individuals and materialism. A weaker link than materialism and parasocial interaction, this correlation was significant at the p<.05 level. This supports e television one watches, the more he or she believes the real world to be like the one depicted on the screen (1976). This particular finding is logical because of the compounding factor: the more of a particular type of program a person watches, the more that person subscribes to the values presented on that type of program. Furthermore, if a viewer enjoys what he or

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76 she sees on the television show, it stands to reason that he or she will seek out that show more often along with similar programs. When the correlation between parasocial interaction and materialism controlled for demographic variables, age and experience with wealth also appeared to be predictors of materialism in viewers. Age was negatively correlated with materialism scores, suggesting tha t younger viewers are more likely to exhibit materialism. This is particularly interesting given that previous research did not find a connection between age and parasocial relationships (Miller, 1983). Experience with wealth was positively correlated with materialism, suggesting that people who have more experience with wealth in their personal lives, whether by being wealthy themselves, having wealthy family members or associating with wealthy people, tend to be more materialistic. Favorite Thing About th e Show The survey for this study included an optional open ended question asking respondents to list their favorite thing about watching the reality show of choice. This question was answered by 283 fans. The author hoped to gain some insight into motivati ons for watching reality shows about wealthy people and to see if money was mentioned in any of the responses. Several fans of Basketball Wives stated reasons such as sted reasons of a positive way, however. One viewer claimed her favorite part a bout Basketball Wives lengthy call for more uplifting shows by stating:

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77 I had been waiting to see if they would show them actually doing something clothing, weaves, shoes, earrings, gossiping, eating, drinking, yelling, fighting. I wanted to see them do challenges to benefit a community organization like the Boys and Girls Club. While viewers gave some materialistic re asons njoy seeing her in process of the s decorating her Fans of Hollywood Exes eir age. Rarely any fighting or Keeping Up with the Kardashians fans were surprisingly scant with materialistic family and have a strong close bond with each

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78 clothes they wear then trying to find simil Fans of Kendra on Top which followed the life of a former girlfriend of Hugh Hefner, had conflicting favorite things about the show. Many stated they liked to see the former Playboy darling in a more familial role As Kendra on Top fans had the third highest mean materialism score, it is interesting to note that materialistic answers were not included as reasons for watching the show. So, although the fans did not claim to watch the show for materialistic reasons they did exhibit a relatively higher materialism score than fans of several other interaction scale scores. Fans of Real Housewives of New Jersey tune in for the drama of t was also a commonly listed reason. Only a few materialistic reasons made the list. For people seem to have it all, yet they fight and bicker constantly. Never

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79 Many watched Real Housewives of New Jersey o mind Interestingly, these types of answers are counterintuitive to cultivation theory, which was the essence of this study. The viewers that provided this type of answer may not be swayed by what the y see on television or may be unaware of its effects. Along with the ever Real Housewives of New York City fans interestingly saw the show as a cautionary tale, stating their favorite reasons for watching a much more fullfilling [sic] even though favorite things about the program. A notable exception to materialism was why fans enjoyed watching Giuliana & Bill The show featured E! News host Giuliana Rancic and her husband, first season Apprentice winner Bill Rancic, and chronicled their struggle to get pregnant. Viewers of the show

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80 e that known, seem like a and I have a story by one respondent. It might be interesting to note that Giuli ana & Bill fans exhibited the second highest mean parasocial relationship scale score and the third lowest mean materialism score among all shows. Fans of the show are particularly involved in it but do not seem to exhibit higher than average materialistic values. Considering there was also a lack of materialistic reasons given for watching Giuliana & Bill this suggests a possible exception to the parasocial relationship and materialism link. Favorite Thing About Favorite Character A second optional open ended question was included in the survey asking respondents to list their favorite thing about their favorite character from the chosen show. This question was answered by 287 fans. The author hoped to discover some viewer motivations for forming parasoc ial relationships with these characters. Despite frequently listing the drama as a favorite thing about Basketball Wives many fans gave reasons for picking their favorite character that were quite the opposite:

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81 character traits were listed often lso ite things about favorite characters. Materialistic answers were not given by fans when discussing their favorite characters. However, one respondent made it clear that wealth was not why she watched reality shows about rich I like Kim because she is open about her feelings and is straight forward. I do not watch these shows because of these peoples [sic] wealth, I watch because of either how I relate to the

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82 person, or in most cases, how I don't, and I realize how mat erialistic and ridiculous Concurrent with their reasons for watching the show, fans of Giuliana & Bill did not list many materialistic favorite things about their character of choice. Style w as the only materialistic reason given and was listed only three times as a favorite thing: strength Again, if money was mentioned by Giuliana & Bill personaliti ted, Hollywood Exes fans like their favorite characters to exhibit the elusive quality of Materialistic answers wer e not given per se, but physical beauty was listed several were also common them es among favorite characters of Hollywood Exes fans.

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83 Fans of Keeping Up with the Kardashians admire the humor of their favorite s mentioned a few times as a reason for choosing a favorite character on Keeping Up with the Kardashians physical attractiveness were brought up only a few times. Kendra on Top as reasons for choosing a favorite character. There were a couple mentions of main Some Real Housewives of New Jersey fans claim to appreciate a lack of positive qualities as their favorite things about their chosen characters. The traits of

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84 all strongly feel that she would trade all the wealth and money for the happiness of her Fans of Real Housewives of New York City mentioned several times that they Real Housewives of New York City character. Comparison of Optional Question Answers One interesting finding of the optional questions was the difference between what viewers stated was their favorite thing about watching the show and their favorite thing about their favorite characters was listed in some capacity 3 2 39 The second question asking respondents to state their favorite thing about their

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85 29 to 4 9 There seems to be a notable disconnect between why a viewer likes a particular show and why they like a particular character on that show. One explanation could be that fans like to see their favorite character rise above the drama depicted on the shows. How fans interpret their fav from fan to fan. Furthermore, an argument could be made that fans interpret the fights on the show based on preexisting favorite characters. They may choose sides based on who their favorite character is and then interpret the situation so that their favorite character comes out of it, in their opinion, smelling like roses. Conversely, some fans character based on who they b elieve to be in the right. Limitations One limitation of this research is that the question regarding income level was not necessarily understandable. Respondents could have interpreted the question as to list either their individual or household income, a s the item did not explicitly mention one or the other. This could have created some inconsistency in the data. Clearly asking for either individual or household income would have been a better tactic. Furthermore, the item examining duration of exposure a sked respondents to list how many weeks they had watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals. There was varying response types and confusion regarding this question. In hindsight it may have been better to ask respondents to list for how many years they had watched these types of shows or for how many seasons.

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86 It was noticed by the author that the Facebook pages for these shows do not attract only fans of the shows, but also people who claim to severely dislike the show and/or its characters. Sever al posts on the Facebook walls for shows and comments on administrator posts were disparaging and critical of the show and/or its performers. This creates a possible limitation of this study. If a person who actually disliked one of the shows were to take the survey, it could skew the results. Another limitation of this study is that it does not prove causality. The results do not show whether materialistic people are more likely to form parasocial relationships than non materialistic people or if material ism is a product of forming the parasocial relationship. It also cannot be determined if materialistic people seek out reality shows about rich people or if viewers become materialistic because they watch those shows. Suggestions for Future Research Given the amount of Facebook comments that expressed distaste for a particular reality show and its wealthy characters, future research could study the difference in materialism in viewers who make agreeable statements about a show and those that make disparag ing comments about a show. A future study could include items to gauge the amount of enjoyment viewers experience when watching a particular program. Also, the same type of study could be recreated but on a different social media site, such as Twitter or in blogs. The correlation between parasocial relationship and fans of other types of shows could be tested. For instance, fans of a fiction television drama featuring rich people could be surveyed for parasocial interaction and materialism. Fans of shows that feature a look into different extravagant lifestyles on every episode instead of following the

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87 same people week to week (like the former Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous and Cribs and My Super Sweet 16 ) could also be surveyed. As age exhibited a negative correlation with materialism, a study specifically surveying fans of shows with different target demographics, could be interesting as well. Shows about rich people that have a younger audience could be compared to shows that have an older audi ence in terms of materialism and parasocial relationships in its viewers. It could be interesting to do a focused study of one particular reality show featuring wealthy people and compare viewers experiencing parasocial relationships with each of the diffe rent characters. A longitudinal study testing causality on materialism and parasocial relationship could be created as well. Another study that might produce notable results would be for researchers to conduct a content analysis of particular reality shows featuring wealthy individuals for mentions of money and material possessions. Researchers could then administer a survey measuring parasocial relationships and materialism to respondents. Comparing the results between shows that mention money often and th some additional insight into the link between parasocial interaction with wealthy reality stars and materialism. Considering fans of Giuliana & Bill and Kendra on Top did not list money or possessions as reasons for watching th e show, there may be difference s between shows that feature money as a theme and those that do not. An in depth study based on the optional questions could be devised. Finding a more detailed way to compare motivations for watching a particular show with

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88 m otivations for choosing a favorite character on that show could produce some interesting results. Conclusion This exploratory study produced an interesting addition to the current literature on parasocial relationships. It demonstrated a link between the type of people with whom viewers form parasocial relationships (rich people on reality shows) and how the fans view the world (being slightly more materialistic). Furthermore, results also suggested that amount of exposure per week to similar shows, viewer age and previous experience with wealth can work with parasocial interaction to more accurately predict materialism in a viewer. This research provides evidence that cultivated ideas in viewers does not necessarily solely rely on the amount of television viewers watch. The parasocial aspect of this study supports the idea that viewers who are more engaged in a specific type of show will develop views of the world similar to the values presented on that show more so than viewers who watch the show more pass ively. Additionally, viewer age can compound with involvement to affect how views of the world are cultivated. Personal experience with a particular subject can affect cultivated views, too. In this particular n interactions with wealth were examined. If a different world view was studied, a different type of experience could be examined in the viewers. For example, if violence were to be researched, conducting a th violence along with parasocial interaction with a performer on a violent show could be studied. motivations for watching a particular reality show about wealthy people and their

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89 re reported love of drama on the shows contrasts sharply with their appreciation for characters who appear down to earth. This could be because a viewer likes to favor characters who appe ar to be the eye of a storm: drama swirls all around them but they refuse to participate (or they participate at a level the viewer deems appropriate). Hopefully a future study could delve into this topic more comprehensively and provide additional possibl e answers. Two shows stood out in this research: Giuliana & Bill and Kendra on Top While watching the shows were surprisingly scarce. Furthermore, these shows had the two hi ghest mean parasocial interaction scale scores. This may suggest that the less drama and fighting between characters, the higher the parasocial interaction. Producers of docusoaps about rich people may be interested in the results of this study to help gui de future endeavors. It appears that fans of this type of show enjoy watching the drama and fighting but want to have someone to root for through all of it. and, ultima tely, advertising revenue.

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90 APPENDIX A SURVEY FOR BASKETBALL WIVES FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Nat ive Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $ 178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High Sch ool Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for exampl e, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, On ce a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on t he air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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91 5. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on th e air? 8. How often do you watch Don't Be Tardy for the Wedding when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch The Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 11. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill wh en it's on the air? Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorit e Character Who is your favorite character on Basketball Wives? Choice of Shaunie, Evelyn, Royce, Suzie, Jennifer, Kenya or Kesha. Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on to a hig 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite char acter choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television.

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92 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character cho ice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. I look forward to 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sign of success. 4. 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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93 Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. 14. 15. It sometimes bothers me q Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on a 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optional Question s Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Basketball Wives?

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94 Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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95 APPENDIX B SURVEY FOR GIULIANA & BILL FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered t he following demog raphic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African Amer ican, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Gr ade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No D egree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). F oil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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96 5. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 8. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you wat ch The Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 11. Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Durati on of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Who is your favorite character on Giuliana & Bill? Choice of Giuliana, Bill, Colet, Pam, Anna, Eduardo, Gail, Karen or Pasqua le. Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television.

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97 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. tching the program (favorite character choice) is on, I feel as if I am part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on to a high of 5 for Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sig n of success. 4. 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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98 Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying thi ngs gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. 14. 15. Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on a Likert scale ra 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optional Questions Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Giuliana & Bill?

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99 Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite c haracter choice)?

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100 APPENDIX C SURVEY FOR REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispani c is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, O ver $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, Hig h School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for e xample, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Mont h, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashi ans when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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101 5. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 8. 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch The Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 11. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bi ll when it's on the air? Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Fa vorite Character Who is your favorite character on Real Housewives of New Jersey? Choice of Caroline, Teresa, Jacqueline, Melissa or Kathy Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (fav orite character choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television.

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102 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite cha racter choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. I look 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achie vements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sign of success. 4. 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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103 C entrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most peo ple I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. 14. 15. It sometimes bo Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personal ly wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optiona l Questions Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Real Housewives of New Jersey?

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104 Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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105 APPENDIX D SURVEY FOR FANS Demographic Information Re spondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your ye arly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooli ng Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Yea r, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctor ate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. t Be Tardy for the Wedding when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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106 5. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 8. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch The Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 11. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the air? Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wea lthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Kroy, Jen, Karen, Joe, Brielle or Ariana Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Fav orite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite c haracter choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television.

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107 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite cha racter choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choic e) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how h e or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. erial objects people own as a sign of success. 4. 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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108 Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. that important to me. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. My life would be better if I ow 13. 14. 15. Experience with Wealth Responde nts answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someo ne who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optional Questions

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109 Optiona l: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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110 APPENDIX E SURVEY FOR KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, F ilipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not O ver $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respond ents ha d a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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111 5. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often d o you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 8. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch The Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 11. H Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality sho ws featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Who is your favorite character on Keeping Up with the Kardashians? Choice of Kris, Bruce, Kourtney, Kim, Khloe, Rob, Kendall, Kylie, Scott or Lamar. Modified Parasocial Interaction Scale R espondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with f riends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on tele vision.

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112 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. ter choice) is on, I feel as if I am part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfi ed when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind abo ut the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admir e people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sign of success. 4. The things I own say 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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113 Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I l ike a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. d nicer things. 14. 15. Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (bo ss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optional Questions Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Keeping Up with the Kardashians?

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114 Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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115 APPENDIX F SURVEY FOR REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW YORK CITY FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiia n, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduat e (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents ha d a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New York when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on t he air? 4. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air?

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116 5. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 8. How of 9. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch The Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 11. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the a ir? Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Who is your favorite character on Real Housewives of New York? Choice of LuAnn, Ramona, Sonja, Aviva, Carole or Heather. Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television program, I would watch that program. 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television.

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117 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite c haracter choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. I look forward to watching (fav 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Value s Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sign of success. 4. 5. I like to own things that impress people.

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118 Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. 14. 15. It sometimes bothers me quite a bit tha Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one w ealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague). Optional Questions Optional: Wh at is your favorite thing about watching Real Housewives of New York?

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119 Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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120 APPENDIX G SURVEY FOR HOLLYWOOD EXES FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demograp hic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. What is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African America n, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8, 700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degr ee, Associate Degree (for Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil questions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Hollywood Exes when it's on the air? 2. How ofte n do you watch Kendra on Top when it's on the air? 3. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New York when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air?

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121 5. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on the air? 6. Ho w often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the air? 7. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 8. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 10. How often do you 11. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 12. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 13. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the air? Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Who is your favor ite character on Hollywood Exes? Choice of Mayte, Andrea, Sheree, Nicole or Jessica Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorit e character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television p rogram, I would watch that program.

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122 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television. 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to compare my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If th ere were a story about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. 14. When (favorite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. sign of success. 4.

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123 5. I like to own things that impress people. Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possess ions are concerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy life. 12. 13. 14. 15. Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wea lthy friends. 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague).

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124 Optional Questions Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Hollywood Exes? Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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125 APPENDIX H SURVEY FOR KENDRA ON TOP FANS Demographic Information Respondents answered the following demographic items: 1. What is your age? (open ended) 2. Wha t is your sex? Choice of male or female. 3. As a reminder, Hispanic is not a race, but an ethnicity. Are you of Hispanic origin? Choice of Yes or No. 4. What is your race? Choice of White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian Indi an, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Other Asian, Native Hawaiian, Guamanian or Chamorro, Samoan, Other Pacific Islander or Other Race. 5. What is your yearly income level? Choice of Not Over $8,700, Over $8,700 but not Over $35,350, Over $35 ,350 but not Over $85,650, Over $85,650 but not Over $178,650, Over $178,650 but not Over $388,350 or Over $388,350. 6. What is your education level? Choice of No Schooling Completed, Nursery School to 4th Grade, 5th Grade or 6th Grade, 7th Grade or 8th Grad e, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade No Diploma, High School Graduate (Diploma or equivalent, for example, the GED), Some College Credit but Less than 1 Year, 1 or More Years of College but No Degree, Associate Degree (for example: AA, AS), Bac Degree (for example, MA, MS, MEng, Med, MSW, MBA), Professional Degree (for example, MD, DDS, DVM, LLB, JD) or Doctorate Degree (for example, PhD, EdD). Foil Questions For each of the following foil ques tions, respondents had a choice of: Never, Less than Once a Month, Once a Month, 2 3 Times a Month, Once a Week, 2 3 Times a Week or Daily. 1. How often do you watch Kendra on Top when it's on the air? 2. How often do you watch Hollywood Exes when it's on the a ir? 3. How often do you watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians when it's on the air? 4. How often do you watch 30 Rock when it's on the air?

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126 5. How often do you watch Giuliana & Bill when it's on the air? 6. How often do you watch The Big Bang Theory when it's on the a ir? 7. How often do you watch Basketball Wives when it's on the air? 8. How often do you watch The Office when it's on the air? 9. How often do you watch American Idol when it's on the air? 10. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New Jersey when it's on the air? 11. How often do you watch CSI when it's on the air? 12. How often do you watch Real Housewives of New York City when it's on the air? 13. Exposure About how many hours per week do you watch reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Duration of Exposure About how many weeks have you watched reality shows featuring wealthy individuals? (open ended) Favorite Character Who is your favorite character on Kendra on Top? Choice of Kendra, Hank, Little Hank, Rosa, Kira, Holly, Judy or Hank, Sr. Modified Parasocial Interaction Scale Respondents answered on 1. I think (favorite character choice) is like an old friend. 2. (Favorite character choice) makes me feel comfortable, as if I am with friends. 3. (Favorite character choice) seems to understand the things I know. 4. If (favorite character choice) appeared on another television program, I wo uld watch that program.

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127 5. (Favorite character choice) keeps me company when his or her program is on television. 6. I would like to meet (favorite character choice) in person. 7. I like hearing the voice of (favorite character choice) in my home. 8. I like to comp are my ideas with what (favorite character choice) says. 9. part of the group. 10. I miss seeing (favorite character choice) when his or her program is not on. 11. If there were a s tory about (favorite character choice) in a newspaper or magazine, I would read it. 12. I am not as satisfied when other characters replace or overshadow (favorite character choice). 13. 14. When (favor ite character choice) shows me how he or she feels about some issue, it helps me make up my own mind about the issue. 15. I see (favorite character choice) as a natural, down to earth person. 15 Item Material Values Scale Respondents answered on a Likert sca Success 1. I admire people who own expensive homes, cars and clothes. 2. Some of the most important achievements in life include acquiring material possessions. 3. e much emphasis on the amount of material objects people own as a sign of success. 4.

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128 5. I like to own things that impress people. Centrality 6. I try to keep my life simple, as far as possessions are con cerned. 7. 8. Buying things gives me a lot of pleasure. 9. I like a lot of luxury in my life. 10. I put less emphasis on material things than most people I know. Happiness 11. I have all the things I really need to enjoy li fe. 12. 13. 14. 15. ke. Experience with Wealth Respondents answered on 1. My family is wealthy. 2. I am personally wealthy. 3. I have one wealthy friend. 4. I have several wealthy friends 5. I am in a relationship with someone who is wealthy. 6. I work for at least one person who is wealthy (boss or superior). 7. I work with at least one person who is wealthy (colleague).

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129 Optional Questions Optional: What is your favorite thing about watching Ken dra on Top? Optional: What is your favorite thing about (favorite character choice)?

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137 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Erin Cassidy Pinkston was born in 1985 in Rochester, New York and raised (mostly) in Hendersonville, Tennessee. In 2007, she earned a Bachelor of Science in Electronic Media Journalism from Middle Tennessee State University. Cassidy completed her Master of Arts in Mass Communication at the Univers ity of Florida in December 2012 and plans to enter the field of television journalism.