Negative And Positive Sides Of The Csi Effect

The CSI Effect refers to a situation where reality and fiction blur together. The CSI Effect was named after a well-known drama series, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. It features forensic investigators based out of Las Vegas. It was a very popular American series. Popularity of the series led to many believing it was true. However, this is a gross exaggeration. The popularity of the series led to multiple series that portrayed the same idea: fast-paced, highly technologically advanced and dramatic forensic investigations.

A 2006 weekly rating for TV shows showed that CSI Crime Scene Investigation was viewed over 30,000,000 times per night. This compares to the 40 million who watch other series within the same genre’. Jurors have been affected by these series. They now expect forensic investigators to collect, document and interpret evidence in a very short time. Jurors who watched these shows would request DNA evidence for almost all court cases. They believed it was necessary for the identification of the suspect. People were also convinced that forensic evidence could be exact and point to the suspect instantly. Podlas (2006) did research that found that a group was formed of mock jurors who were asked to give verdicts in various cases. The verdicts were nearly identical. However, those who watch CSI often required more forensic evidences to prove a conviction. The CSI Effect has led jurors to have higher expectations of forensic investigators. Attorney Andrew Thomas was the first to mention the CSI Effect. He is a Maricopa County District Attorney in Arizona. He said that jurors won’t convict someone if they don’t have forensic evidence. Despite the CSI Effect’s popularity, researches have not provided any direct evidence that it has a major impact on courtroom decisions. The majority of CSI Effect evidence is provided by attorneys and law enforcement officials who were surveyed. It has only been shown that the CSI Effect affected certain aspects, but not enough to significantly impact juror verdicts. Although most people perceive the CSI Effect as negative, there are positive aspects to it. One positive effect is that people are now more interested in forensic evidences, and more cautious about how they handle themselves when faced with forensic science. Although it has positive effects, they don’t outweigh the negative. This is because of the possibility that innocent people could be wrongly prosecuted due to misunderstandings and unrealistic expectations.


  • joshwright

    Josh Wright is a 34-year-old educational blogger and school teacher who has been working in the field for over a decade. He has written extensively on a variety of educational topics, and is passionate about helping others achieve their educational goals.

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