March 8, 2017
How Seamless and GrubHub Supported Your Addiction to Netflix
If you ask any old Joe on the street what entity changed the entertainment industry the most in the last ten years, they are nine times out of ten going to answer to the likes of “streaming.” Netflix will usually flow out of their mouth faster than Niagara Falls but sometimes you’ll get the answer of some other players who made it to the playoffs, like Amazon and Hulu. Although, Netflix is the commanding force that trail-blazes the streaming game, and therefore the television industry, with an immense lead. Companies like Amazon, HBO and Hulu have made strides to close the gap with Netflix but at the end of the day Netflix remains the primal example of a company who revolutionized the television industry. While I would support those old average Joes on the street, I believe there are other cultural shifts and innovations that have also changed the entertainment industry that deserve a look at. For the purpose of this class, and this paper, I am going to focus on one of those innovations that makes countless hours of streaming possible because without these units one could argue that companies like Netflix would not have impacted the television the way they have. Three words, too many syllables- online food ordering. I believe that because of companies like GrubHub, UberEats and countless others, the most attractive aspect of Netflix, the unlimited binging aspect, becomes all that more possible and probable.
People with more free time watch more TV. This has been proven over many generations and time and time again. Think of the earliest TV sows from the 1950s and how they were catered to the American housewife, who presumably was able to spend her day alternating between cooking, cleaning, watching TV and perhaps all three at the same time. While a lot has culturally changed since then, networks still primarily try to cater to those who have the most free time and therefore are most likely to tune in every week. They do this through scheduling and content. High school students and college students are among the highest numbers of Netflix and other streaming services, like HBO Now, watchers. While the idea of binge-watching actually originated with syndication and later rerun marathons that became popularized around the 1980s, it is still extremely applicable to viewers today. According to Deloitte, about 70% of U.S. viewers binge-watch TV shows, averaging 5 episodes per binge. The same group that was surveyed by Deloitte also responded that over half would rather binge a show than watch it weekly as it comes out on a network. Binging a show is seen as more convenient because one does not have to schedule their whole day around it. Some shows, like Orange is The New Black, are perfect for the quick binge, but others, like Greys Anatomy, require months of commitment due to the abundance of seasons. Network television has stood...