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October 14, 2015

Could TV be taking a back seat to the Web?

by Richard Keller, posted Aug 26th 2007 11:01AM

TV may be taking a back seat to the web, according to a new surveyAccording to a recent survey that answer may be 'yes'. However, since the survey was conducted by IBM there may be a bit of favoritism towards the Superinternethighway. Not that I'm pointing fingers or anything, but the survey was conducted by IBM.

Did I say that the survey was conducted by computer company IBM? Just wanted to make sure.

What the survey found was that more people are spending time on the Internet rather than with their TV. Nineteen percent said that they spend six hours or more surfing the web. This is opposed to the 8% who watch television for the same amount of time. Ironically, these Internet users are spending most of their time on sites that contain television material. Thirty-nine percent of those surveyed mentioned that they spend most of their time viewing content on YouTube, while 33% go over to network TV sites.

Also addressed in the survey was the use of digital video recorders and the amount of material that viewers watch from them. Twenty-four percent of U.S. participants said that they have a DVR and watch more than half of their shows on replay mode. The good thing about this result is that one-third of those surveyed said they watch more television because of their DVR. Apparently, these aren't part of the 8% who are watching television for only six hours a day. Come on, people, suck it up!

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When I'm not working, I'm watching TV online. ha.

August 27 2007 at 4:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I only watch TV on my computer, and by that I don't mean captured TV, just purely torrents. I'll grab the DVDs of shows I really like, but not because I will find them useful or even watch them, but just so I have rewarded the makers. I couldn't imagine doing it any other way now. I would consider Sky+ if it was a tenner a month, but no more.

August 26 2007 at 3:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I wonder how much of this net surfing time might be work-related. There can be legitimate work reasons to surf but there are far fewer good reasons to watch TV while on the clock.

There's also this apparent dichotomy between TV and web, as though they are one to one tradeoffs. But web use can replace far more than just TV. Perhaps you found a phone number online rather than in a phone book. Or read a news story online rather than in print. Chatted online, not on the phone. How do these activities balance out?

August 26 2007 at 2:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Not only are you right to point out that this was a survey by a computer company...and that people are watching MORE TV shows via their DVRs...but I would also bet that a big chunk of that extra time on the internet these days is getting TV/film/culture content via YouTube and the TV station's web sites.

We consumers want the 24/7, on-demand nature of the current internet, and the content that TV networks and film studios make for us. Can't we have both?

August 26 2007 at 1:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

DVRs do indeed help us to spend less time watching TV, but perhaps the biggest thing that has turned me off TV is the fact that new shows get cancelled far too early. Nowadays you gotta ask yourself if it is worth your time and effort to get involved with watching a new show. I tend to spend at least three hours per day online viewing stories in my RSS reader and message boards. I'm also spending more time outdoors, riding bicycle and playing baseball. Perhaps the influx of HD channels coming soon to DirecTV will increase my viewing time.

August 26 2007 at 1:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BC McKinney

The activities aren't mutually exclusive, either. Any time I'm watching TV I've got my notebook computer on a lap desk, paying greater attention to whichever is more interesting at a particular moment.

August 26 2007 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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