In a development that would be super good news for us here at The A.V. Club—were we not just as addicted to binge-watches and our unhealthy reality TV-viewing habits as all of you out there—it looks like people are spending an hour more of their daily lives consuming media this year than the year before. That’s according to Nielsen’s Q1 2016 Total Audience Report, which alleges that the average American spent 10 hours, 39 minutes a day consuming media in the first quarter of 2016, up from 9 hours 39 minutes in 2015. That’s a lot of episodes of Cutthroat Kitchen, even when you take into account—
Hey! Hey, turn that off and come back here. Yeah, we know, you haven’t finished the latest season of Orange Is The New Black (and seriously, what’s wrong with you, slowpoke? Join the cultural conversation), but this is kind of important. If these numbers are accurate, and this trend keeps up, we’ll be spending almost 4,000 hours of our lives in 2016 watching and listening to stuff, up from 3,500 or so in 2015.
Unsurprisingly, the major culprits—other than, y’know, the ongoing problem of human weakness—are smartphones and tablets, which have seen their daily usage numbers jump way up in the last year. According to the study, we spend 37 more minutes per day on our phones than we did last year, and 12 more on our tablets. It’s enough to make you feel kind of anxious about the role of pop culture and media in our world, and the way we use it as a soporific to dull the anxieties of modern life. And we’ll be sure to think about that more, right after we cue up a couple old episodes of 30 Rock to take the edge off this bad feeling that’s suddenly roiling around in the pits of our stomach.
You can read the entire Nielsen study here (after giving the polling company some of your personal data), and bathe your brain in pop culture and media on every other corner of the ’net.