5pm now means Netflix and chill
The Future. With the evening commute a thing of the past (for those that work from home), TV has become the indicator that the work day is officially over. With over two hours of TV being watched a week, streaming services may try to produce content that feels perfectly suited to an after-work wind-down.
“Are you still decompressing?”
Goodbye daily commute, hello next season of Stranger Things.
- For many, the drive, train ride, or walk home was the “buffer” between the work day and life at night, allowing us to organize our thoughts and decompress.
- But with the commute now between our desk and couch at home, that 30-60 minute time-frame can now be taken up by a show.
The turn to TV makes sense. Charles Spence, a professor of experimental psychology at the University of Oxford, says that watching TV “captures our attention and perhaps stops us ruminating about that last bad meeting or work problem. It may also modify our mood or give our attention time to recharge.”
The data is now there to back up the increased viewership: analytics firm Nielsen found that between December 2019 and October 2020, people who worked from home spent an average of two more hours a week in front of the TV.
With Pew finding that 71% of Americans are doing their jobs from “their kitchens, living rooms and home offices” and the University of Chicago reporting that 76% don’t ever want to go to an office five days a week again, the increased TV viewership will most likely only go up from here.