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'Media and Me' in the Lock-down: An Exploratory Study to Understand Media Consumption Pattern among Urban Millennial during Lock-down Period due to Covid-19

Rajeev Ghode*

New Media Department, International School of Broadcasting and Journalism (ISBJ), MIT ADT University, Loni, Pune, India

*Corresponding Author:
Rajeev Ghode
New Media Department, International School of Broadcasting and Journalism (ISBJ), MIT ADT University, Loni, Pune, India,
Tel:
+919823295526;
E-mail:
[email protected]

Received date: June 15, 2020; Accepted date: July 29, 2020; Published date: Aug 04, 2020

Citation: Ghode R. 'Media and Me' in the lock-down: An Exploratory Study to Understand Media Consumption Pattern among Urban Millennial during Lock-down Period due to Covid-19. Global Media Journal 2020, 18:35.

Copyright: © 2020 Ghode R. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Abstract

Almost all the countries in the world have impacted due to Covid-19 virus spread and subsequent lockdown in the beginning of 2020. This ‘forced’ lockdown have resulted in the change in social and personal life due to Covid-19. Use of media and social media has seen as the most convenient way of active engagement during the lockdown. Thanks to the advancement in media technologies and communication technologies which have eased human life during this lockdown. It is observed that there is huge rise in consuming electronic media and online media by all age groups, genders and social strata in the society. Many reports claimed about the increase media usage. The researcher have high-lighted the finding of these reports in this research paper. The reports data and the observations made the researcher curious to understand media consumption pattern. Millennial population of any country contributes in economic and social development and so the researched decided to explore the media consumption pattern among millennial in urban India. The primary aim of this research study is to explore media consumption among millennial during lock-down period. The other objectives of the study are - to understand the media preferences during the lockdown and preferred time slots of the specific media platform. It is a descriptive study and used self-guided questionnaire as a research tool. The convenient sampling method is used to collect responses from the online questionnaire. 288 urban millennial filled and responded to the online questionnaire. This explorative study found that during lock-down time, the millennial consumed more media; they are over connected on different media platforms and also overloaded with different content. The millennial consumed much of the media in the form of short social media posts, surf internet and consumes video content on YouTube and OTT platforms. The millennial found using more online media. They do not consume the lengthy and brief textual content. Serious reading is replaced with byte content in the form of short posts, short messages, photos and videos during lockdown.

Keywords

Media consumption; Millennial; Lockdown; Electronic media; Online media

Introduction

The current lockdown due to covid-19 has not only impacted the social life but also economic growth across the world. This is the most challenging period for all the countries in fighting against corona virus. Social Distancing and lockdown are the weapons used by almost all the countries to prolong the disaster. The lockdown in India also extended 4th time and still do not have answer in the near future. The lockdown was seriously affected the migrant labours, the daily wagers and poor families and farmers in India.

It impacted each and every person in some other way with no social, educational, financial and geographical barrier. The urban middle class and above population also impacted being at home. At big cities, everyone safe at home practicing their altered life-style has brought many new dimensions in their life. As an observation, the media exposure and consumption has increased tremendously during this lockdown. According to recent research conducted by Bengaluru based AZ research pointed that during lockdown TV reach touched 5.6 crore which was 5 crores before pre-lockdown followed by radio 5.1 crore which was 4.8 crore before, as per a survey conducted by AZ Research PPL (Bengaluru), across Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru, Kolkata and Hyderabad.

Hence the researcher is curious to explore the pattern of media consumption and media usage by urban millennial during lockdown period.

Why Millennial?

Here, the millennial is defined as those who born during the years 1982–2000. i.e the urban population of the ages more than 20 and less than 38.

As per the report on 'how millennial can make globalization 4.0 work for all' from World Economic Forum, Millennial population plays an important role in strengthening local and regional economies. The urban millennial are highly engaged in higher studies, focused on careers, working in corporate spending more than 10 hours at office.

Marguerita Cheng [1] in her article published on Forbes website stated 8 characteristics of millennial. They are Socially Conscious, Technology-based, Ethnically Diverse and Optimistic, Embrace Experiences and Ethical Spending, Educated and Knowledgeable, they are health conscious, Financially Conscious and also spiritually conscious.

Millennial are all set to take the centre stage in consumer markets and redefine India’s consumption story with their increasing number in the working age population, said a report released by consulting firm Deloitte India and lobby group Retailers Association of India. The report further focus on that the millennial are the chief wage earners in India with a 47% share in the working age population.

During the covid-19 pandemic, almost all millennial are lockdowned at their houses worldwide and currently engaged at Work from Home (WFH), online learning and household activities. The life has more impacted as before the lock-down, these millennial had a very different life outside the home. But fortunately, advancement in ICTs, 4G and high speed Internet services that they are connected to the outer world. According to the MoMagic’s Mobile Phone survey report 2020 [2], an IOT solutions and Mobile Ad Tech, a Datascience company - the increasing penetration of 4G internet services will lead to a growth of major OTT players in India

At the same time, being at home their preferences of communication, media consumption and daily routine has affected largely. Media consumption drastically shifted from family to personal due to technological advancements. Everyone have their own screen and own choice to consume media. Considering this situation the very important sector of Indian population, the researcher wanted to explore and highlight the media consumption pattern during the lock-down period.

Research Design

The primary aim of this research is to and understand media consumption among millennial during lock-down period. The other objective of the study is to understand the media preferences during the lockdown and preferred time slots of the specific media consumption.

It is pure descriptive study and used self-guided questionnaire as a research tool. As the researcher is also at home and working and teaching from home, Online Google form is used to design and distribute the questionnaire and also collected the responses online. The questionnaire was distributed over social media platforms and also through emails to more than thousand respondents. 288 respondents responded and filled the online questionnaire. As it is computer generated Google form, the researchers used advance setting and hence received 100% filled and complete responses.

The variables used in this study are the age range, gender and current occupation.

The major media platforms are listed as Websites - Internet surfing, Reading Blog post, YouTube videos, Online Games, Social Media Posts, Reading Newspaper in PDF format/Epaper, Reading Online Magazines, Reading E-books (Fiction), Reading E-books (Non-Fiction), Watching Movies on OTT Platform (Netflix, Amazon Prime etc.), Watching Web series on OTT Platforms, Watching news and information content on OTT Platforms, Listening Online songs, Reading books (Printed), Reading Magazines (Printed), Listening Offline Songs, Listening Radio FM Channels, Repeat telecasts on Television, TV News Channel, Watching Movies on Movie Channels.

Literature Review

BARC India and Nielsen Media also conducted a survey and published report in April 2020 on 'Crisis consumption on TV and Smartphones' [3]. The report indicated that TV viewership grew by 24% in week 18 i.e April First week.

Global Web Index report [4], reported that 87% of U.S. consumers and 80% of UK consumers say they're consuming more content – broadcast TV, online videos, and online TV streaming take the top spots overall for increased media consumption during the lockdown. Even further the report concluded that younger generations are generally consuming more media than older generations. The report also claimed that in-home entertainment becomes primary source of leisure; around 40% in the UK and U.S. are considering purchasing new media subscriptions to pass the time.

Mindshare India and Vidooly have done a comprehensive study to ascertain the impact on online content consumption trends over the first quarter of 2020 [5]. This study stated that there is a steep increase in content consumption online from 1.5 hours to average 4 hours. The survey also revealed that the millennial remain the most-active group on YouTube in the country as 70-percent of viewership is coming from the 18-34 age group.

Data Distribution

Total 282 millennial responded to this survey. As per the Table 1, 168 Male and 114 female millennial took part in this survey and recorded their responses. The ratio to male to female respondent is 60:40. The 60% millennial in the age bracket 20-24, 22% millennial in the age bracket 25-29, 12% millennial in the age bracket 30-34 and 6% millennial in the age group 35 to 38 participated in this study.

Age Group Male Female Total
20-24 98 70 168
25-29 38 25 63
30-34 21 12 33
35-38 11 7 18
Total 168 114 282

Table 1: Age wise distribution of responses.

As per the Table 2, 151 students, 51 Working Professionals, 24 Entrepreneurs, 14 Home Makers and 25 Freelancers participated. It is 52% respondents are students who are studying their graduation and post-graduation studies.

Profession Male Female Total
Students 83 61 151
Working Professional 32 19 51
Consultant 17 7 24
Entrepreneur 15 9 24
Home Maker 2 12 14
Freelancers 19 6 25
Total 168 114 282

Table 2: Profession wise distribution of responses.

Data Analysis

Use of media platforms

Referring Figure 1, 90% millennial always watch television news channel, 87% are engaged in Social Media posts, 80% said they watch YouTube videos, 78% said they surf information on internet and 55% said they always watch webseries on OTT Platform.

global-media-consumption

Figure 1: Media Consumption pattern.

71% said that they never read fiction e-books, 68% said they never read non-fiction e-books and also never read magazines online. 58% said they never read the books during the lockdown period.

This trend clearly shows the millennial consume much of the media in the form of short social media posts, surf internet and consumes video content. Though they are Online, they do not consume the lengthy and brief textual content. Serious reading is replaced with byte content in the form of short posts, short messages, photos and videos. It is also revealed that the millennial are highly consuming news on news channel and follow information from news channel.

Time spent on media platforms

During lock-down, it is observed that the average spent time on total media consumption has increased. As per the Figure 2, 13% millennial watch TV News Channel more than 4 hours, 20% spent on watching Movies on OTT Platforms, 20% spent on watching Web series on OTT, 18% spent time on social media, 17% spent time on surfing internet sites.

global-media-time-spent

Figure 2: Time spent on media platforms.

46% Millennial spent 2 to 4 hours on social media, 43% watch movies on OTT, 30% spent time on social media, 30% spent time watching web series on OTT, 29% spent time on internet surfing.

59% Millennial spent 1 to 2 hours on watching YouTube video, 40% spent on watching news channel, 37% spent time on listening offline songs, 34% spent time on listening online songs.

51% Millennial spent nearly an hour for reading articles on BLOG, 39% spent on reading e-Newspaper, 38% spent on watching repeat telecast on television.

43% Millennial spent time on reading E-newspaper for up to 30 minutes, 24% spent on Internet surfing, 16% spent time on OTT for news consumption

The millennial do not like to read online either fiction, nonfiction and magazine. Almost 90% millennial reported they do not read the books online during lock down.

It is found that for longer duration in a day part, millennial prefer watching movies and web series on OTT. For 2-4 hours millennial spent time on social media, watching movies and web series on OTT. For 2 hours, millennial prefer watching videos on YouTube, listening online and offline songs. And for short duration, they preferred reading e-Newspapers, reading blog posts and internet surfing.

Profession wise media consumption

As per the Figure 1, it is found that the millennial spent most of their time on watching news on TV Channels, Social Media, watching videos on YouTube, surfing websites, and watching web-series on OTT Platform. These are the top 5 media platforms on which millennial spent their time.

As per the Table 2, 52% students and 18% working professionals reported their response and, 9%, 8%, 8%, 5% freelancers, entrepreneurs, consultants and home-maker respectively. So, it is important to understand the time spent by students and working professionals on the above top5 media platforms.

Time Spent by students on media platforms

From Figure 3, students spent 1-2 hours on watching news channel and watching web-series, watching YouTube videos and surfing on internet. They spend long hours on consuming social media and web-series on OTT Platform during lockdown.

global-media-students

Figure 3: Time spent by students on media platforms.

Time spent by working-professionals on media platforms

From Figure 4, working professionals spent 1-2 hours on watching YouTube videos, watching news on TV News channel and watching web-series, watching. Similar to students, the working professionals also spend long hours on consuming social media and web-series on OTT Platform during lockdown.

global-media-platforms

Figure 4: Time spent by students on media platforms.

Online subscription

As per the Figure 5, 66% millennial said they have subscribed OTT platforms during lockdown period, 16% subscribed online games, 17% registered for digital library, 8% registered song apps and 4% registered for online magazine subscription.

global-media-online-subscription

Figure 5: Online subscription.

The OTT subscriptions are increased during the lock-down period but other subscriptions for online games, digital library, songs app have very less response, but if compared to before covid time, there is slight increase in digital library and online game subscription during lockdown.

It is also found that male over female millennial have more subscriptions in all platforms. Also almost 15% millennial have more than 2 subscriptions and 9% have more than 3 subscriptions on online platforms.

Views on media usage and consumption

As per Figure 6, 74% millennial agreed that they have increased media consumption, 61% said they are overloaded with content (information and entertainment), 83% said they are over connected with several media platforms during lockdown.

global-media-lockdown

Figure 6: Overuse of media during lock-down.

Overall, the millennial agreed that they are overloaded with content, over connected with media platforms and also agreed that they over consumed media during lock-down compared to before lockdown time.

Major Finding of the Study

• The top media platforms which the millennial preferred to consume short duration up to an hour are – News TV Channel (90%), Social Media platforms (87%), YouTube videos (80%), internet surfing (78%).

• For short duration up to 30 minute, 43% millennial preferred reading e-Newspapers, 24% spent time on internet surfing.

• 46% millennial spend long hours on social media and 43% watching web series on OTT platforms.

• It is also found that, there is no much difference in media usage among students and working professionals. The media consumption behaviour is same.

• 83% said they are over connected with several media platforms during lockdown.

• 74% millennial agreed that they their media consumption has increased, 61% said they are overloaded with information.

Conclusion

During lock-down time, the millennial consumed more media, over connected on different media platforms and also overloaded with content. The millennial consumed much of the media in the form of short social media posts, surf internet and consumes video content on YouTube and OTT platforms. Though they are Online, they do not consume the lengthy and brief textual content. Serious reading is replaced with byte content in the form of short posts, short messages, photos and videos. It can be concluded that for longer duration in a day part, millennial prefer watching movies and web series on OTT, Social media engagement and for short duration, they preferred reading e-Newspapers, reading blog posts and internet surfing. There is no difference in media consumption among students and working professionals during lock-down.

References

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