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Your Digital Life Will Only Get More Crowded... If You Let It

Soulskill posted about 9 months ago | from the did-somebody-let-charlie-stross-select-the-future-again dept.

Media 53

Nerval's Lobster writes "By 2015, Americans' ability to access digital media at home and on mobile devices will raise the average volume of media consumed to the equivalent of nine DVDs worth of data per person, per day – not including whatever media they consume at work. That estimate adds up to 15.5 hours of media use per day per person, which breaks down to 74 gigabytes of data per person and a national, collective total of 8.75 zettabytes, according to a new report. Between 2008 and 2013, Americans grew from watching 11 hours of media per day to 14 hours per day – a growth rate of about 5 percent per year, lead author James E. Short wrote in the report. The increasing number of digital-data consumers and the shift from analog to digital media drove the total volume of data in bytes to grow 18 percent per year. That growth rate 'is less than the capacity to process data, driven by Moore's Law, [of about] 30 percent per year,' he added, 'but is still impressive.' Social media is growing even faster than other options – 28 percent per year, from 6.3 billion hours in 2008 to an estimated 35.2 billion hours in 2015. Companies expecting to catch the attention of either employees or customers will have to do so in the context of an increasingly media-swamped population. Digital data consumption will continue to rise, the SDSC projections estimate, possibly to more than an average of 24 hours per person per day – which is only possible assuming multiple simultaneous data streams running through the minds of Americans watching TV, browsing the Web and texting each other simultaneously, probably to ask why they never have time to just sit and talk any more."

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53 comments

No wonder they're so fat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45350779)

How does someone even consume that much? 14 hours a day?! Do you even have a job?

Re:No wonder they're so fat. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45350883)

Con-Con-Controlled by gamma light! Gamma, gamma, gamma light!

Re:No wonder they're so fat. (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about 9 months ago | (#45357437)

My working job generates hundreds of megabytes of papers, data, simulation outputs and code.

My weekends are wasted on minecraft videos.

if you let it (4, Funny)

themushroom (197365) | about 9 months ago | (#45350781)

Between 2008 and 2013, Americans grew from watching 11 hours of media per day to 14 hours per day

And also grew from weight 140 pounds to 190 pounds.

Re:if you let it (0)

craigminah (1885846) | about 9 months ago | (#45350837)

What a stupid storyof course your consumption will increase IF YOU LET IT. To quote my niece, "Duh."

Re:if you let it (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45350959)

What a stupid storyof course your consumption will increase IF YOU LET IT. To quote my niece, "Duh."

That post is 100 bytes long.

In 1995, that would've been the end of it, but here in 2013 we need a high-res mashup of your niece saying "Duh" above a hip hop tune, so it would probably turn out to be 10MB.

Just trying to figure out where all that "progress" is going.

Re:if you let it (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45350979)

Your niece is a whore.

Re:if you let it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351133)

Your niece is a whore.

Duh.

Re:if you let it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45353067)

In your dreams, sonny.

Re:if you let it (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351673)

Between 2008 and 2013, Americans grew from watching 11 hours of media per day to 14 hours per day

And also grew from weight 140 pounds to 190 pounds.

Use your brain for something other than fat bashing.

That only leaves 10 hrs a day for other things. What it says is people come home from work and sit in front of the TV, don't shower, and get less than 8 hrs sleep. And this is suppose to be the average. If it were true, you wouldn't see people outside, or shopping, or doing anything else in the community. heck the streets would be quiet and empty after peak hour.

Re:if you let it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45352567)

Isn't the ultimate goal to pacify (or satisfy, take your pick) the population?

On the positive side... (1)

beh (4759) | about 8 months ago | (#45421107)

That brings down the time spend watching media per day PER pound of viewer down from .0786 hours per pound of weight watching media per day to .0737 hours per pound of weight... ;-)

bulls!@$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45350827)

There isn't enough time in the day to consume that much media, I call shenanigans. Apparently did not take into account people with jobs/family/hobby/life

Re:bulls!@$ (5, Informative)

dgatwood (11270) | about 9 months ago | (#45350931)

The summary is misleading. What the study actually says is that the total amount of content that the average person requests, if that person took the time to fully read or watch it would take 15.5 hours per day to fully consume. That's a very critical difference.

For example, let's say you read Slashdot. You read the headline, you read the summary (maybe), you read the article (hah!), and then you open up the comments, skim a few of them, and post a comment or two of your own. However, there are 500 comments farther down the page that you did not read. You spent three minutes on the page, but if you had read and digested every comment, it would have taken forty minutes. This study says that you consumed forty minutes of media.

It's not about how much time you spend consuming media, but rather how much media you are exposed to. This statistic is interesting for entirely different reasons than the amount of time you actually spent. It is a better indicator of how well informed you are (assuming the media is informative, or else it indicates how well you know your memes), and is a good indicator of how much bandwidth you use. By contrast, the amount of time you actually spent is a good metric for obesity and other health problems. :-)

Re:bulls!@$ (1)

MemoryAid (675811) | about 9 months ago | (#45351153)

Furthermore, I could read Slashdot for two hours and not come close to consuming the amount of data on a DVD. I suppose the uncompressed video signal to the monitor might have that much data, but I don't examine the font closely enough when I read to count that as consumption.

Re:bulls!@$ (1)

zlives (2009072) | about 9 months ago | (#45351177)

its about marketing in the end, or better yet advertisement consumption metrics.

Re:bulls!@$ (1)

Urza9814 (883915) | about 9 months ago | (#45359141)

Also multiple steams at once. Not all that uncommon for me to be watching a movie on the projector while coding something on the laptop while keeping Facebook open on my phone. And every once in a while I add one or two additional laptops to the mix for various reasons...

Gotta do some parallel processing :)

Re:bulls!@$ (1)

The_Revelation (688580) | about 9 months ago | (#45365855)

So I guess you could call it the Media Whore Factor (MWF), or, the breadth and depth of data exposed to during a sitting rather than the quantity of media consumed.

So, someone skimming Reddit would have a far greater MWF than, say, someone watching Fox NEWS. This might be another way of indicating the relative worthlessness of conventional media that tend to drive viewers through a set of topics of subjectively varying interest.

I still call BS on this, however. I suspect there is a saturation limit on attention and information density, which this study doesn't seem to take into account. As someone else pointed out, extrapolation gone mad.

EVERYBODY PANIC (2)

Press2ToContinue (2424598) | about 9 months ago | (#45350911)

'cause good fear-based reporting is always appropriately met with a good panic.

... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep" (5, Insightful)

Guy Smiley (9219) | about 9 months ago | (#45350939)

This seems like extrapolation gone mad. People will consume almost 16h of media every day excluding work hours so they'll either be watching two shows simultaneously in the 8 non-work, non-sleep hours in the day? Or they will watch 16 hours of media and never sleep? Ah, "consumption" in the original paper means media delivery to the household, with no guarantee anybody is even paying attention (I'd guess set top box on but TV is off, click on 1h YouTube video but stop after the first 20 seconds).

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (5, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | about 9 months ago | (#45351015)

Exactly. The person who wrote the summary apparently didn't actually read the article, but he/she consumed it. :-D

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (1)

s.petry (762400) | about 9 months ago | (#45351163)

I had the same initial reaction as yours to TFA. I started to ask myself the more obvious question. Are they trying to state that higher quality media requires more bits so our data will increase by said proportion? But that is nowhere in their scheme. I am with you, TFA is simply a very bizarre set of statements.

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (1)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 9 months ago | (#45351193)

Exactly what I was thinking. So many statistics these days are corrupt, all in the name of the investors.

And I have to ask, is your handle "Guy Smiley", the reporter from Sesame Street?

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (1)

war4peace (1628283) | about 9 months ago | (#45353465)

Actually, my reaction even while reading TFS was spot-on to TFA assumptions. I know plenty people who have either radio or TV on throughout their waking hours. While they're not always eyeballing the TV, they're sure as hell hearing it (or the radio), therefore the term "consumption" isn't that far fetched anymore. Furthermore, some even sleep with TV or radio on, which to me seems like an insanely stupid thing to do. Give your brain some rest, I tell them but noooo....

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (1)

coofercat (719737) | about 9 months ago | (#45355135)

Apparently maths is the accountant's responsibility in most media companies ;-) Down in Marketing, they think some ads are so good they count as "double hours" though.

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 9 months ago | (#45355243)

If someone could develop a DVR that edited out the filler I'd buy in immediately. There is so much padding and time wasting in TV shows and movies I could halve the time I spend watching most of them.

Mythbusters is one of the worst offenders. That show could be about 10 minutes long, but somehow gets padded to 45 minutes. The 10 minutes of real content is actually quite good, but I don't watch it any more because I got fed up of pressing the skip forward button every few seconds.

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 9 months ago | (#45355917)

My Internet connection at home was down for a week, and when we got it going again on Tuesday, I probably wouldn't have even booted up my laptop if I didn't need to get on to pay my student loans. We need to step back and really think about whether we even want what our habits are giving us in the first place.

Re:... or "by 2015 nobody will be allowed to sleep (2)

Megane (129182) | about 9 months ago | (#45357419)

I don't get cable TV, only antenna, but I set up a MythTV box a few months ago. While some of what it records is duplicates (because I'm using the EIT information rather than an external schedule service, and there is an old MythTV bug that causes incorrect descriptions to be saved in the schedule database), the number of things that I say "hey, that would be cool to watch" and tell it to record is now really starting to stack up. And that's when most TV stations only have 12 hours ahead of schedules, so I'm tagging them only a few hours in advance! (But mostly it's the fault of the local 3-stream PBS station. There's a lot of cool random stuff on KLRU-Q.)

"Your digital life will only get more crowded if (2)

dyingtolive (1393037) | about 9 months ago | (#45350941)

you let it, otherwise in which case it won't." Research in the "We Point Out Bullshit Stories and Also Comment on Ones That Are True" department at the Tautology Research Institute has found that, technically, if you word your headlines precisely enough, you can pass bullshit as 'news' and still be correct.

They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a TV (4, Informative)

AdamHaun (43173) | about 9 months ago | (#45351007)

Note that the report (third link) treats data (bytes) and time (hours) as separate measurements. The various summaries are mixing 15.5 hours with 9 DVDs, which is not correct. Also of note: media consumed at work is not included in the estimate.

Also, as the summary points out, consumption is defined in terms of what goes over the network and for how long, not what actually gets attention. Thus, it's possible to double or even triple your rate of media "consumption" without spending any more time or attention than you did before.

Still disturbing, though.

Re:They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45352619)

I have kids, with limited proxied Internet access. They are very "jerky" in their browsing. They tend to flit from page to page, only looking at one thing one each, and generate an incredible amount of bandwidth usage compared to their browsing time.

It also doesn't help that while you are reading the first paragraph on some ajax enabled sites it is constantly updating images, ads, and/or actual content. I witnessed a hung Internet Explorer with one session on MSN use 500Mb overnight (~12 hrs). This is just one page!

With mobiles on the upswing content seems to be trending towards a "less is more" philosophy. Limited bandwidth on cellular networks is forcing the web to become more trim... except for the media which had a pending 4k video standard looming on the horizon.

Re:They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45353085)

You have kids, and you let them use Internet Explorer. WTF are you thinking, man?

Re:They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45353115)

No they use firefox. The instance of hung IE i saw was a work machine where it seems to be the favorite (except on my machines).

Re:They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45356355)

The various summaries are mixing 15.5 hours with 9 DVDs, which is not correct.

Correct, they should have used LoC's and Big Mac's.

Re:They don't actually mean 15 hours in front of a (1)

msobkow (48369) | about 8 months ago | (#45376589)

Not only that, but a lot of people download or stream 1080p nowadays, which tends to be at least 4 times as big as DVD-quality media.

I already eat 7 DVDs a day... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351113)

...not sure I have room for any more.

In other news, you can get hundreds of TV channels (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351155)

many of which run 24/7. How will we ever cope with having so much "content" to watch?

Oblig. Xkcd: Extrapolating (2)

darkshot117 (1288328) | about 9 months ago | (#45351183)

http://xkcd.com/605/ [xkcd.com]

And then by 2023 we will be consuming 25 hours of media per day.

74 Gb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351499)

74 Gb of data per person? And the dinosaur ISPs want people to voulunteer to limit themselves to 5Gb per MONTH? HA HA HA!!!

Finally people will catch up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351667)

I use my oculus rift to watch 2 video streams, i have a brail reader, my headphones play 2 audiobooks at a time. soon people will consume as much media in 24 hours as i do before breakfast. its only a matter of time

bandwidth of meeting real person (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45351749)

What about consuming some good time with a friend?
As much as data your eyes and ears ever can absorb, with zero both theoretical and practical latency?
(not counting the 10 milliseconds it takes for the voice of your friend to shake your eardrums)
How much is the bandwidth of two eyes processing a face in real time?

Living hundreds of km/mi from friends (1)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45352827)

What about consuming some good time with a friend?

That depends on the cost of round trip airfare.

15.5 hours per day? Don't think so. (1)

SeaFox (739806) | about 9 months ago | (#45351935)

To be consuming 15.5 hours of media per day that would imply people only spend half and hour for all non-media activities if they're getting 8 hours of sleep.

Half an hour for all showering and grooming, eating, etc. Even if you are listening to the radio as you commute to work there's still the few minutes you spend walking from your car in the lot to your desk at work that would need to be part of that figure.

Re:15.5 hours per day? Don't think so. (1)

war4peace (1628283) | about 9 months ago | (#45353437)

Yes and if you spent 5 minutes reading TFA we would all have been spared of yet another stupid comment.
But I guess you merely "consumed" it, if even.

Re:15.5 hours per day? Don't think so. (1)

Cro Magnon (467622) | about 9 months ago | (#45356633)

Well, if you sleep while you work, you can double the time available to consume media. :)

Limit caps to internet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45352191)

What I find interesting about this is how slow internet caps are being processed. Given in 2015 as having 74GB per day, a 30 day month would be 2.2TB of data. Substract 5% twice from that number for 2013, and we should be using roughly 66.8GB per day; which is 2.03TB

Between my phone contract and the absolute best available cap limit from my carrier, I could currently only process 1.2TB of data prior to hitting my cap. And that is if I remove my phone from using my Wifi from back home. Going to Rogers, I get 1/4 that for more money. Or 0.27TB.

The 1TB size is arrived at from the family size; which denotes that their pricing on a per person value would be similar.

Why can or should carriers be allowed to make such a bold claim that their cap will in no way go beyond what the average consumer uses when they supply at best 1/10th of what the average person consumes per month?

gah (1)

GrimShady (2714901) | about 9 months ago | (#45353655)

summary was a steaming pile of crap

Link and troll bait (1)

greggster (1712144) | about 9 months ago | (#45353835)

"Americans grew from watching 11 hours of media per day to 14 hours per day" What americans - a like retired or does "I code therefore I media" count? These numbers seem way off..

TLDR (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45355579)

The quality of content on the internet is rapidly dimishing... I remember what the internet could have become!

I won't let it (1)

neo-mkrey (948389) | about 9 months ago | (#45357005)

Problem solved!
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