Room to View
Family Television Use in the Australian Context

by Donell Holloway, Lelia Green (Edith Cowan University)

Although Australian media consumption follows general Western trends toward increas-
ingly media rich households, there seems to be a distinctly regional response to how
media technologies are incorporated into the Australian home. Although a majority of
Australian families with children have a second (and many a third) television set, few
choose to locate these technologies in children’s bedrooms. Thus, Australia’s high level of
screen entertainment media is not associated with a high level of children’s bedroom access,
as would generally be expected. When family conflict does arise regarding television
viewing, it is just as likely to be about “where to watch” as “what to watch.” Through the
use of an audience ethnography approach, this article explores how Australian parents
and their children make sense of their television viewing in the home environment, high-
lighting how new and multiple media technologies are integrated into the spatial geography
of the antipodean family home. (download)