LASICS .::. Open Conference Systems, IAMCR 2010: Communication and Citizenship

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Michelly Santos Carvalho, Ana Cecília de Abreu Pinto Araújo, Bernardo Nabais, Filipa Almeida

Last modified: 2010-07-14


This paper develops a comparative analysis among the television program “Gato Fedorento Esmiúça os Sufrágios”, SIC news and the american programa “The Daily Show” with Jon Stewart. The portuguese show premiered on 14 September 2009 and it was created in order to satirize the parliamentary and local elections that were about to occur on 27 September and on 11 October 2009, respectively.

According to its creators, “Gato Fedorento, Esmiúça os Sufrágios” found its inspiration on "The Daily Show." This late night satirical american atraction, in accordance with Thussu (2007), was aired for the first time on 21 July 1996. “The Daily Show” is hosted by Jon Stewart and its comedy and satire comes from recent news stories, political figures, media organizations. It is broadcast four new episodes a week, from Monday to Thursday on Comedy Central.

SIC news, according to Santos (2002), was premiered in 1992, after a long period of monopoly of RTP, the public portuguese broadcaster. SIC news follows the traditional informative programs television’s standard (which focus on principles of truthfulness, objectivity, accuracy, fairness, seriousness and impartiality).

Throughout this research, we have also identified the discursive strategies used by the host, Ricardo Araújo Pereira, during his interviews in “Gato Fedorento Esmiúça os Sufrágios”. We have based our paper in Rezende (2009)’s ideas, which can be found in his article “Gêneros e Formatos Jornalísticos na Televisão Brasileira”. We looked further on the concepts presented by Feldman (2007) in the article that categorize the program "The Daily Show" as infotainment (a neologism made by combining the ideas of information and entertainment). This is a new and modern journalistic genre in which both views coexist.

The present study seeks to demonstrate that despite being satirical/humorous shows, both “The Daily Show” and “Gato Fedorento Esmiúça os Sufrágios” production and creation methods follow the painstaking work of a journalistic news show construction. The staffs and the broadcaster promote meetings where they review material that they have gathered from major newspapers, international press, websites, and discuss headline themes. They also work on writing pieces inspired mostly by recent news. Working like this, the whole team can identify and discuss the latest events and choose some that may be cause of criticism and mockery to work on, therefore the presenter is always well informed and updated. This method garantee that the programs can achieve their goals of simultaneously inform and entertain the public.

During this paper was possible to identify how entertainment / humor can have news value and how it fell into the public’s taste. To enrich our research, we have also employed the concepts of several authors, including Authier-Revuz (1982), Giordani (2007) and Tramontina (1996).

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