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Why Facebook Can’t Compete With Television

So you think mass media is dying… think again! Americans spend over 50% of their free time either parked in front of their television or watching it while engaged in other incidental activities around the home.Why Facebook Can't Compete With Television

Nielsen have released a 2010 Media Fact Sheet that reveals that 31.5 hours per week is what the average American spends watching TV!

So here are some simplistic numbers that show how much time is wasted vegetating in front of  “Lord TV”. ( I know some of you will say that you watch TV while doing things with the kids or using the computer, so you aren’t wasting your time in front of the TV).

So here are the numbers.

Total Hours Available  Per Week

24 hours x 7 days a week = 168 hours to sleep, work and play

Committed Time

5 days per week you work for 8 hours per day plus 2 hours per day getting to work including, showering, dressing and commuting = 50 hours
Sleep time per week 7 x 8 hours = 56 hours

Total committed time = 106 hours to work and sleep

Time available for other activities

168 hours less 106 hours leaving 62 available hours for pursuing other activities.


So taking the 31.5 hours of TV watching and dividing that into the 62 hours of available time after commitments to work and sleep reveals 50.8 % of available time is spent prostrate in front of the TV.

That is a bit scary!

Just imagine how good you would be at something if you took that 31.5 hours and devoted some of that time to your passion or hobby whether that be a musical instrument, photography, painting, sailing or even knitting.

Here are some of the other statistics provided by Nielsen showing the disparity of time spent with mass media compared to social media.

Mass Media: Television

  • 99% of Video Content in the US is watched on traditional mass media television
  • Average American watches 31.5 hours of TV per week
  • Kids 6-11 watch 28 hours of live TV a week
  • More households have 4 TV’s than have only one TV

New Media: Social Media

  • Facebook is used only 6 hours per month
  • Average time per viewer spent watching online video per month is only 3.33 hours per  month

Source: Nielsen 2010 Media Fact Sheet

OK, so I haven’t been able to total up all the social media hours per month due to research laziness but I can tell  you this much,  that the time spent vegetating for over 126 hours per month on front of television far exceeds social media.

The question to ask is this.

“Is  TV marketing to the numbed masses effective or just wasting advertising dollars on an audience that isn’t hearing your message?”

What do you think?

For me I would rather be blogging than watch TV (check out my post “29 Reasons Why You Should be Blogging Rather Than Watching Television” )

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