Does TV Make us Dumber-er?
TV viewership is on the rise, driven by “time-shifting” technologies like DVRs and online programming availability, as well as multi-platform access driven by mobile devices.
Does watching lots of TV zap brain cells, or is it just that more educated people watch less TV? We’re not sure about the cause and effect relationship, but according to Hunch data the latter statement definitely seems true.
More than 66,000 Hunch users have answered both a THAY (“Teach Hunch About You”) question about their education level and how much TV they watch. We thought it would be interesting to explore the correlation among answers to each of those two questions.
It turns out that increasing educational level is almost perfectly inversely correlated with daily TV consumption. Of the 22% of Hunchers who completed no more than a high school education, only about 12% of them watch no TV but a full 25% watch 4 hours or more each day. On the other end of the spectrum, of the 26% of Hunchers who have completed at least a PhD, about 17% of them watch no TV and only about 16% watch 4 hours or more each day.
Here’s another way to look at the data. For 3 the groups of Hunchers who completed no more than 2 years of college, about half of each group watches 2 hours or more of TV each day. But that’s true of just 44% of those with a 4 year degree, 37% of those with a masters, and 35% of those with a PhD or higher.
There are more than 1,500 questions in Hunch’s THAY question pool, and more than 25 million THAYs have been answered since Hunch’s June launch. So there are nearly limitless interesting correlations and insights just waiting to be mined. We’ll frequently blog about these, and soon we’ll also publicly release the correlation tool to make it easy to explore some of these relationships yourself.