Checkin’ It Out: Fall TV 2011

Fall is a magical time — time for heading back to school, wearing cardigans and close-toed shoes, and raking leaves. Plus, that Autumnal air! Wearing costumes for a HOLIDAY! GORGING YOURSELF ON FOOD AND HAVING IT BE PUBLICLY ACCEPTABLE AND ENCOURAGED!

It’s also time for season and series premiers, new TV shows and more bad writing and acting to make fun of! So, we took an afternoon and asked 8 random respondents not only what they were watching, but HOW they were watching it.

With a small sample size, we didn’t see much of a pattern concerning what people wanted to watch. Shows on the CW and ABC Family were mentioned by two respondents, but the tastes ranged from just wanting to see Football to Glee to Sons of Anarchy. However, 5 respondents also mentioned that they enjoy watching shows as an event — especially season premiers and finales — though one respondent said that with the series finale of Desperate Housewives, “I know after the last episode I will be upset so I am also thinking about not watching it.” (Male, 21, South). Ahhh, avoidance. I hear you, bro. I still bawl when I think about how Seinfeld is over.

The one thing that we did see, with 7 out of 8 respondents mentioning it, was that respondents did NOT want to watch television on their mobile phones. A sampling:


I don’t understand how people watch it on a phone…. and when we watch as a group, it needs to be on a screen bigger than a laptop

Female, 26, Northeast

There are not really any ways I wouldn’t watch if it was something I wanted to see. I don’t like watchin on anything smaller than a computer its hard to see if the screen is smaller

Female, 26, Northeast

I can’t imagine watching it through a mobile phone because the screen is so small!

Female, 19, West

As for how respondents were actually getting to the content, out of the 8 respondents, 7 paid for extended cable or satellite dish. This because it was important to see shows as they aired, instead of waiting for them to become available for streaming.


I prefer to watch the shows as they air. It’s not as exciting when it’s not in the moment. Also sometimes people on Facebook or Tumblr post spoiler-comments about the TV shows. 🙁

Female, 28, West

However, one of those respondents made it clear that he wasn’t using that to watch stories:


Yeah, I use cable to watch sports. My movie viewing is done with Netflix streaming. TV isnt all that entertaining to me. I have liked a few shows but I never seem to have a routine that I stick to in order to watch a show on a regular basis. I like having the ability to have things “on-demand” of sorts.

Male, 31, West 

And another, a 23 year old male from the Midwest, said that he was trying to decide whether or not to keep cable or just pay to stream from Hulu and Netflix:


If i could hook up hulu plus to my tv in the living room, i might end up getting rid of cable. but i’m not sure yet. i might try both for awhile.

Male, 23, Midwest

Lastly, a woman after my own heart said she decided to stick with basic cable and pay for streaming to save money and have the ability to watch shows whenever they wanted, at their convenience:


We use hulu and netflix rather than buying more extensive cable since everything is already on hulu (free) and aslo I don’t usually watch shows right when they air. I have three kids so its easier to watch when they are napping and I have free time (plus fewer commercials and I can pause if I want to).

Female, 26, Northeast

I use the same method — while in graduate school, I chose to forego buying cable so I could eat food. Out of habit, I now use a Roku to stream TV, and even though Hulu Plus is a little behind, I only see about 3 minutes of commercials per show and pay a fraction of the cost of cable. Luckily for marketers, advertisers and TV networks, it doesn’t look like this switch to streaming has taken popular hold just yet. The people who paid for extended cable said they watched what they’d missed on network websites every now and then, but they preferred to see shows first run.

How do you watch television? What are your favorite shows? Tell us!