Dirtgirlworld: corporate social responsibility and ethical consumption in the world of children's television programming
Ward, S 2012, 'Dirtgirlworld: corporate social responsibility and ethical consumption in the world of children's television programming', Media International Australia, Incorporating Culture & Policy, vol. 145, pp. 29-38.
Discussions in the field of ethical consumption usually refer to the mainstreaming of ethical and environmental concerns that impact on consumer behaviour in the consumption of food and material goods, and in some cases to television programs (especially lifestyle and makeover programs) that acknowledge the environmentally concerned viewer by encouraging the consumption of goods and services that minimise environmental impact. These studies recognise the field of commodity consumption as an important site for thinking about practices of identity-formation and the construction of the self as a responsible, environmentally and ethically concerned citizen who makes politically based decisions in everyday practice. But rarely is a TV program itself presented as a green commodity produced with the intention to be ecologically and ethically sound in its branded identity. This article showcases the production and distribution of the preschool television program dirtgirlworld as a response by ecologically minded individuals to engage with the challenges of today's environmental crises. This is a case study that connects ethical consumption and corporate social responsibility with screen production and distribution. The central thrust of this article is to posit the example of dirtgirlworld as part of a global social movement towards a more ecologically sustainable existence. However, the suggestion here is that this case study also lends itself to much-needed conversation about how media studies can engage with our current ecological crises beyond the practice of eco-criticsm.