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715: Binge Watch

The McMillian Dictionary Blog wrote, quote:

The word ‘binge’ first appeared in English in the mid-1800s to mean ‘to soak’. Around the time of World War I, the term ‘binge’ was used to refer to eating or drinking in excess. The term binge-watching can be traced back as far as 2003, but it didn’t come into common usage until around 2012.

Just because we didn’t start hearing the phrase binge-watching until more recently, quoting from a Morning Consult article:

Derek Johnson, associate professor of media and culture studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said the concept of binge-watching isn’t new or limited just to streaming services, given that cable channels will stack episodes of the same show next to each other. “There’s potential for binge-viewing in classical, network television schedules,” he said. “Looking at cable channels during the daytime, a huge number of cable channels and electronic programming are blocks of these back-to-back episodes.”

In other words, who cares if it’s on Netflix, Hulu, HBO now, or any one of hundreds of other services, channels, or even stored media options — a huge number of individuals have binge-watched something when they have the option.

In 2017, Netflix released statistics on the quote-unquote year of binge watching. And those statistics revealed a lot. As Inverse.com reported, quote:

Netflix also combed through aggregate user data to find some interesting stats on our collective binge-watching tendencies. Generally, members complete their first binge in only three days. The most popular shows to binge first were Orange is the New Black, Breaking Bad, and The Walking Dead, in that order.

Then again, binge watching might be entirely in who you ask. After all, Netlix defines binge watching as completing at least one season of a show within a week. Meanwhile, academic researchers are looking at binge watching as watching two or more consecutive episodes of a show, at least once a week.

Taking that second definition, According to a new Morning Consult/Hollywood Reporter poll, 60 percent of adults who watch shows on demand said they binge-watch […] with 15 percent reporting they binge each day, 28 percent several times per week and 17 percent about once per week.

So whatever it is you choose to watch, if you make the choice to binge-watch, you’re not alone.