America addicted to binge-viewing
Joseph O'Halloran | 30-04-2014
A survey conducted by strategic research, marketing and brand consultancy Miner & Co Studio has revealed that seven-tenths of US TV viewers consider themselves binge-viewers.

Moreover, and in what is continued excellent news for over-the-top (OTT) and online video service providers whose offerings are being consumed at a rapid pace, the Can't Stop, Won't Stop: Binge-Viewing Is our New Favourite Addiction report showed that the same percentage of respondents regarded such behaviour as addictive.

The study defines binge-viewing as watching three or more episodes of one series in a single sitting, with frequent binge-viewers being those who binge a few times per week or more and infrequent binge-viewers those who binge once a month or less. It showed that 17% of binge-viewers do so on a daily basis, 63% weekly and 90% on a monthly basis. Frequent binge-viewers skew towards the young with 61% being millennials.

Over two-fifths (43%) of frequent binge-viewers watch more TV because of binge-viewing, yet a quarter of all viewers surveyed said they dislike binge-viewing because they "don't have anything left to watch once they finish." Yet nearly three-quarters (71%) said binge-viewing is "totally normal" and 59% considering the habit to be a harmless addiction. In fact, according to the survey, frequent binge-viewers are more likely to associate positive qualities to binge-viewing than infrequent viewers.

"Our research shows that the way we consume entertainment continues to evolve – a pattern that we see repeated as viewers embrace and adapt to new platforms and choices," said Robert Miner, president of Miner & Co Studio. "A great deal of attention has been paid, with good reason, to the role and impact of binge-viewing on dramas such as Breaking Bad, House of Cards and Walking Dead, however we found that comedy is a favoured binge-viewing genre that's showing notable strength as well. At our core, we are wired to crave good stories that entertain us, and our TV-watching behaviour – and addiction to binge-viewing – isn't boxed in by genre."