Commentary

Less time with media- not a bad thing

I read today that people are spending less time with media than in previous years. Seriously shocking news considering how our days are increasingly filled with new gadgets, new shows, new ways to watch those new shows on our new gadgets, etc. etc. Rather than seeing apocalyptic clouds looming, I will argue this is a good sign for those who create/market/manage media.

As a media consumer, I like my media delivered to me instantly, without interruptions, wherever I am. This is not because I love spending time with my tech-gadgets of the moment; it means I want those interfaces to be as efficient as possible so I don’t have to spend time with them. I will be more excited to use my computer if I can get in and out of my e-mail/calendar/to-do-list in seconds. In turn, I have become so reliant on my media devices that I really cannot image life without them. This might be bad news for media companies because that means you have to facilitate that instantaneous connection with new and quicker devices every year. To me, this just means that I will become more and more attached to my laptop, cell phone, TV and iPod.

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In the same report, it was noted that internet ad spending is projected to gross the largest percentage of marketing dollars in the upcoming years. It might seem contradictory that a medium I use almost exclusively to get in-and-out of information quickly would spend so much on advertisements. But recently I noticed the ads on some of my favorite websites became annoying when they weren’t relevant to me. I might not spend a lot of time with media, but I do want it to fit me perfectly and those sites which offer tailor-fitted information are those I visit daily.

When we do have time to relax, I think we try to enjoy media we usually rush through using. I am less likely to channel surf after a long day, more likely to read the whole news story, more likely to listen to a whole song… Overall, I will say that our decrease in media time just means that we’re including the media into our daily routines rather than setting hour blocks aside from the daily hustle. This might mean fewer minutes with media, but the time we do spend proves the importance of media today.

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