Netflix statistics

As the holidays approach and you plan your binge sessions on Netflix, keep in mind that when you’re watching the streaming service, people behind the scenes are keeping track of every single thing you watch – and they may call you out on your viewing habits in a press release.

The company has unveiled a new batch of binge-watching statistics from its users over the past year, and amid some interesting observations about the pacing of how viewers watch certain shows, they also take a minute to (anonymously) call out a couple of viewers, including one who watched Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of The Black Pearl for 365 days in a row. (No word yet on whether that was Johnny Depp revisiting his glory days.)

According to the press release, Netflix surveyed more than 60,000 members around the globe about their habits from November 1, 2016 to November 1, 2017, and discovered that we collective watch 140 million hours of content per day, which adds up to over a billion hours of Netflix content watched per week. Jeez, when they put it like that, we should probably all take a break from and go outside a little more often, huh? Before we get to the meat of the discussion, there’s one other small point worth bringing up: Mexico outranks every other country when it comes to the number of customers who watch Netflix every single day. So there’s a little piece of trivia to bring up during an awkward silence at your office holiday party.

Meanwhile, Netflix pointed out that the viewer who streamed Pirates every day (possibly Johnny Depp…they didn’t say it wasn’t Johnny Depp) is an outlier, because the average Netflix member only watches 60 movies per year on the service. (That’s five per month.) And then there’s this:

When you stop to think about it, is Netflix tracking these habits amusing or kind of creepy? They’ve been watching us from the start: tracking their user base’s viewing habits informed how they decided to begin producing original content (famously, they figured out that its users were fans of David Fincher and Kevin Spacey, and the result was House of Cards).

But there’s a difference between quietly collecting data to make business decisions and putting viewers on blast on social media. There’s a level of unspoken decorum here: we acknowledge they’re watching us, but we don’t really like to think about it. In return, we expect that they’ll keep quiet about the horrors they find in our collective viewing histories (a UK user watched Bee Movie 357 times in 2017). By puncturing that bubble, they’re reminding us that what we like to consider a one-way relationship has more to it than meets the eye…and that can sometimes be an uncomfortable thing to reckon with.

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