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How Does "Spoiler Culture" Impact Our Ability To Interact with Media

Explore the rise of "spoiler culture" – especially in relation to TV shows and movies – looking at its current prevalence in society, possible origins, and perhaps some famous/infamous instances of "spoilers" as a preface to how "spoiler culture" impacts an audience’s interaction with the work and fellow audience members.

i.e. inability to any longer freely engage in the discussion of a work, whether that inability to discuss effects the way people process that work, isolating one’s self from others to avoid spoilers (to the point even of limiting one’s social media)

Might be interesting as well to see if "spoiler culture" persists within well known material. For instance, are people less concerned with spoilers when consuming media of a historical nature like WW2 movies?

  • As a viewer of many popular television shows I, too, have fallen victim to spoilers. Though frustrating, it is difficult to advocate against this practice due to the rise in social media. People use these media platforms to express their excitement,disgust, or anticipation for the next episode. Personally, I wish there could be a 48 hour limit before a person posts a spoiler, but this is something that will never come to fruition. As for media of a historical nature, most people do expect the majority of society to have a working knowledge of historical events, especially such a well-known event in history as WWII. I think this is an interesting conversational piece, and I would be quite interested to hear the feedback of others. – danielle577 4 years ago
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  • Another possible factor to consider is how promotion, especially in hyper-popular fandoms, contributes to spoilers. For example, take the recent press tour for Captain America: Civil War and the countless interviews, "sneak peaks", small tidbits the actors revealed before the official release of the film as well as the countless amount of film clips released. In a way, it was almost impossible to have the movie "not spoiled" unless you avoided any media at all costs. In this regard, perhaps it would be interesting to look at how media plays with "spoilers". What is the difference between "teasing" and "spoiling" and can media take teasers too far? – Mela 4 years ago
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  • Spoilers often revolve around character deaths - think Avengers, Force Awakens, Game of Thrones - but how is preemptively knowing about a death in works like those different than say deaths within a historical drama? In both a ww2 movie and Game of Thrones the audience is expecting casualties but no one will be upset if a death is "spoiled" in the former. – tlbdb 4 years ago
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  • I think spoilers happened less in the past because there was less media to consume. There were fewer TV channels, and I don't know about how many movies were being released, but because there was less choice, everybody was watching the same things and you had to watch it when it was on TV. There was no way not to be caught up. – chrischan 4 years ago
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  • The writers of Doctor Who incorporated a bit of the "spoiler culture" into the show: the character River Song often uses the phrase "Spoilers". – JennyCardinal 4 years ago
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  • It's fun to watch people do the "spoiler dance" in conversations when a new episode is discussed, or when a new person enters a conversation. – Tigey 4 years ago
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