‘Zero TV’ is here and growing. Are you part of the new trend?

041013zerotvAccording to Nielsen, the television ratings company that keeps track of such things, the number of “Zero TV” households in this country now tops five million — up from just two million in 2007.

“Zero TV” is the category for homes that don’t have cable or satellite TV and avoid traditional television in favor of watching movies on DVD, Blu-Ray or even videotape.  Some get programming over their computer or even smartphones and they pick the shows they want to watch, when they want to watch them, and without shelling out more than a hundred bucks a month for a service.

An Associated Press story on growth of “Zero TV” in the nation found Jeremy Carsen Young, a Roanoke graphics designer who says he is done with regular TV and he now has an unplugged antenna on his back porch.

“I don’t thing we’d use it enough to justify having a big eyesore on the house,” he told AP.

Here in Floyd County, we know a number of people who avoid “traditional TV,” including blogger Fred First and county supervisors Case Clinger and Lauren Yoder.  First watches movies on DVD and Clinger says uses Netflix to get his films via computer.

Netflix and Amazon offer online video subscriptions for about $15 a month (for both) and offer not only movies but also episodes of television series as well as documentaries not always available on normal channels.

Neilsen says the number of people signing up for “traditonal” TV services has “slowed to a standstill.”  While households in the United States grew by 974,000 last year, only 46,000 subscribed to cable, satellite or telecom video services  — about five percent.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Count me among those. Although I have a traditional antenna, and a non flat screen, non digital, non high definition, TV, I haven’t watched a regular TV show in ages. I pull stuff off the ROKU, Amazon, etc. or just do something else radical, like read a book.

    Glad you survived and are recovering Doug!

  2. I cut my cable 5 months ago. I’ve noticed the absence of mindless TV in my home, approximately twice. I credit Comcast’s abuse of its existing customer base for driving me away. Every 12 months, the price for my Triple Play service would go up anywhere from $25 to $65 a month. I’d call and complain. Sometimes 6-8 times. Then Comcast would relent, and leave my pricing at $125 a month. This time, they didn’t budge on price. And I responded in the only way they would understand: by cutting services entirely. $189 a month is just abusive. The reality is that I’m home for about 5 hours a day, during which time I barely ever watched television. Comcast had a good thing going just taking my money at the rate I was accustomed to paying. But they had to be greedy. I will never understand the practice of abusing existing customers with reliable, cyclic, and seismic rate increases. Shouldn’t a business try to keep existing customers, rather than trying to soak them for every penny they can get?

  3. I gave up cable from Citizens about 6 months ago. I hated the disingenuous billing and simply did not feel that I was receiving a good value for my money because there were only 2 or 3 shows that I wanted to watch on a regular basis.

    If the various providers would allow cafeteria style choices rather than a package that includes so much stuff that I have zero interest in I might be interested again but until that day I’ll stick with renting a few DVD’s from Netflix and spend much more time reading books from the library.

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