September 30, 2005
That's a Lot of TV
I challenge the conventional understanding of this new report from Nielsen. The main finding is that American households watch, on average, eight hours and 11 minutes of TV a day, so everybody is like: “Whoah, TV still rules!”
And of course it does. But the thing you have to remember is that this average includes a huge number of senior citizens who do nothing but watch TV all day, every day. And of course we have more senior citizens than ever before. So they’re skewing the figure way up.
I’d be very curious to see a histogram of average TV-watching sliced up by age cohort instead of this monolithic number. I suspect that the 18-25 average, for instance, is still huge, but not that huge. Not even close.