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September 2, 2015

Americans watching TV at record levels

by Danny Gallagher, posted Nov 10th 2009 7:33PM
If you're watching television right now, congratulations. You are part of a new world record.

The Nielsen Company announced that TV viewing for the 2008-09 season reached a new high in average watching time. Now the average American spends four hours and 49 minutes every day in front of the idiot box and the average household spends more than eight hours a day watching television. ("God bless America, land where we loaf, staring down from, our favorite futon, all day and night at the light of HBO")

However, this doesn't mean everyone to celebrating. In fact, the big four networks (five if you count the CW) actually saw a decline in viewers because we have so many other choices now between cable and the Internet. Do you any of you actually watch that much television?

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I've been known to watch baseball for 14 hours straight, but I only watch regular TV for no more than 2 hours per day.

November 11 2009 at 9:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I should be ashamed to admit it but I do watch 8-12 hours of TV/day (personally). However, most of it I TiVo and skip through commercials and the boring stuff. Also, I'm on my treadmill and/or working out for 2-3 hours of that viewing time or on my computer doing work stuff and handling personal correspondences.

On the other hand I spend zero time on Facebook or Twitter as much of America does. Tomatoe/Tomahto. We're all frittering our lives away...

November 11 2009 at 4:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

i'm unemployed.
yes, i'm watching a lot of TV.

November 11 2009 at 3:33 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
J. Kingston Pierce

Wow, four hours and 49 minutes is the average time every American spends watching television each day? Huh. Somebody is definitely doing overtime viewing to make up for me, then. I probably watch an hour or two of programming per day, and sometimes not even that.

November 11 2009 at 12:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

when I worked online, the television was on all day long. if it wasn't on, I ended up surfing the web or facebooking for hours on end instead of working. But with reruns of 90210, Saved by the Bell, 7th Heaven, and Friends (among other shows) on, I could focus on work without really paying attention (I never watched new shows, just ones I had seen every episode of already). So at one point I was watching 8 hours during the day, THEN primetime shows.

November 10 2009 at 9:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Inadequate Wife

I watch about 5 hours of programs per day, but we DVR it all and skip the commercials, or watch it online, knocking that down to about 3.75 hours of actual time in front of the tube. Even the commercial breaks on Hulu only add up to about 2 minutes per program. We hardly ever watch anything live.

About half of what we watch comes from alternate networks - TNT, USA, SYFY, Showtime, or HBO. Fox probably ranks next, then CBS or ABC which are probably equal given that ABC has come up with some decent programs this season. A few NBC programs and the occasional CW program rounds out our list.

November 10 2009 at 9:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

no... thats crazy .... i've never watched 8 hours of tv in a day ... saturday and sunday football don't count right? right??

is household cumulative? i.e. if john and jane and their two kids each watch 2 hours (together or alone) does that count as 8? because then that makes sense. otherwise 8 hours of tv plus 8-10 hours of work/travel plus 8 hours of sleep.... well, i guess that works. as long as tv is always on when you aren't asleep or gone.

November 10 2009 at 8:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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