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 Post subject: Your views on Asperger syndrome documentaries
Post Number:#1  PostPosted: Sun May 12, 2013 2:26 pm 
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Joined: 19 April 2008
Posts: 183
Location: South of Hampshire
A few questions about Asperger syndrome documentaries.

1. Do you think that the mainstream media portrays AS in a way that is generally representative of reality, or does it have a strong tendency to portray AS in ways that are biased, unrepresentative, misleading, or muddled?

2. Would you have more faith and trust in a documentary about AS shown on the BBC; or a small-scale independent production uploaded to YouTube; or purely in terms of content rather than producer?

3. If an independently produced documentary was critical of the NAS (I doubt that any BBC produced ones will be) then would it affect your judgement of it, if so then how?


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 Post subject: Re: Your views on Asperger syndrome documentaries
Post Number:#2  PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 12:17 am 
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Posts: 175
Canopus wrote:
1. Do you think that the mainstream media portrays AS in a way that is generally representative of reality, or does it have a strong tendency to portray AS in ways that are biased, unrepresentative, misleading, or muddled?


It varies considerably. On the one hand I only found out about AS after watching the Luke Jackson documentary. On the other hand I am of the opinion that the mainstream media has a tendency to be sensationalist and style documentaries in a way that is populist rather than informative in order to attract larger audiences. The media seems to prefer documentaries about geniuses and savants rather than more commonly encountered people with AS and the issues that affect them in everyday life. Documentaries about children with lower functioning autism appear to be more common than documentaries about AS.

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2. Would you have more faith and trust in a documentary about AS shown on the BBC; or a small-scale independent production uploaded to YouTube; or purely in terms of content rather than producer?


I always put content before producer and I do not consider the BBC as a hallmark of quality or truth. Neither do I look down on small scale productions on the internet as they could be very representative of reality because they are intended to be informative rather than entertaining.

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3. If an independently produced documentary was critical of the NAS (I doubt that any BBC produced ones will be) then would it affect your judgement of it, if so then how?


I would be surprised if the mainstream media showed anything excessively damning or critical of the NAS because it's very much part of the establishment.

A documentary exposing how useless the NAS is at providing effective services for children and adults with high functioning AS is something that IMO is long overdue. Experience has revealed over the years that many parents of children with high functioning AS have an overly high expectation of what the NAS has to offer them. More often than not they fall into a trap of assuming that the large size of the NAS and tens of millions of pounds of funding it receives means that it offers lots of services. The reality is that the main interests of the NAS are its special schools and residential care services for people with traditional low functioning ASD. Anybody with high functioning AS only gets the crumbs! The end result of this lack of understanding is that parents of children with high functioning AS often end up wasting large amounts of time (in some cases several years) trying to obtain suitable services from the NAS. Only when they finally realise that the NAS is unlikely to provide them do they look elsewhere.


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 Post subject: Re: Your views on Asperger syndrome documentaries
Post Number:#3  PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2013 9:36 am 
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Posts: 58
Location: Dorset
What is needed is a round up of all ASD documentaries so that we can review them.

The great beauty of videos on the internet is that they can be directly produced by people with AS or their families and accurately portray their situation without having to distort their message to pass through the censors and filters of the regulated media concerning issues like impartiality or popular appeal. I agree that the mainstream media is more interested in viewing ratings rather than factual accuracy, and in my opinion television producers have a poor understanding of adults with AS. Good quality videos on the internet will receive the endorsement and respect from the AS community so that the viewer is not left in any doubt.

The average TV viewer who doesn't have any friends or family with AS is unlikely to be interested in a critique or exposition of the NAS although some might be ruffled about the situation if they knew how much public money was being handed to the NAS every year. The the best tactic would be to expose this fact as part of a documentary about fake (government funded) charities. I fully agree that parents of children with high functioning AS need to be made aware that the NAS isn't the right organisation for them because it prioritises resources for people with low functioning autism. A documentary uploaded to the internet and linked into websites like this will be an excellent way of conveying the message. Do we have the facilities to produce videos?


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 Post subject: Re: Your views on Asperger syndrome documentaries
Post Number:#4  PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2013 4:36 pm 
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Joined: 29 February 2008
Posts: 203
Location: The central office
Napier wrote:
What is needed is a round up of all ASD documentaries so that we can review them.


This is something that we have been wanting to do but nobody seems to have the time to carry out a large scale search operation. If anybody has found any good videos or documentaries about AS then we would really appreciate it if your forwarded us the details.

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Do we have the facilities to produce videos?


Yes we have facilities to produce and edit videos. The problem we have is finding families who are willing to come forwards and be filmed.


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