Somewhere Between The Attention Span Of A Gnat And 10,000 Years

That was the time span covered by the “Sustainable Media” panel at OMMA San Francisco.

The 10,000 years was the amount of time spent reading by users of Medium. Naturally, that was a cumulative amount -- not the average per user -- said Evan Hansen, head of content labs at Medium.

That’s a lot more than the attention span of a gnat, which is what Alex Groth, CEO of Gladly, said from the audience during the Q&A session that followed the panel discussion.

Groth didn’t say what the length of a gnat’s attention span is, but according to, it’s “about .210005 of a second.”

On a relative basis, that’s also a lot shorter span than the eight seconds that various industry experts have cited as the current attention span of the average online user. You know the anecdote. It’s the one that goes on to point out that is actually one second less than a goldfish.

Gnats, goldfish or Medium readers, the digital media industry clearly is grappling with attention deficit issues.

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