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How the internet is spoiling TV shows

ONLINE chatter is ruining the endings of TV shows for some viewers.

Almost one in five media-savvy young adults said they had to watch programmes live rather than on catch-up players because they were worried web discussions would spoil their enjoyment.

The same number also admitted to avoiding any social media sites if they had missed a show, according to a TeleScope 2012 survey.

Viewers are increasingly using online tools such as Twitter to share their views about programmes - dubbed "chatterboxing" - with a quarter of adults saying they had commented online or by text about TV shows.


Many under-35s who use social media said the discussion around a programme could make them view a show, with 17pc saying that the buzz could make them watch.

But 19pc of the same group also said they had to watch shows as they happened rather than using any TV on- demand devices because they were worried about reading spoilers from other people.

And 19pc also said they went out of their way to avoid social media if they had missed a show.

The report, published by TV licensing, found that the average person consumed 28 hours of TV on a traditional set, with a further three hours on a laptop or phone.

The research also detailed how 91pc of all viewing was as it happened, with 9pc via "catch-up" - up 2pc in a year.


Psychologist Corinne Sweet said chatterboxing was about communicating.

"Wanting to communicate with others when you experience emotions such as sadness, entertainment, fear or awe is a part of the human condition," she said.

"As TV often prompts these feelings, it is not surprising that more of us are taking advantage of evolving technology to share our thoughts as we watch TV, even if we are home alone."

And Twitter spokeswoman Rachel Bremer said: "The public nature of the platform means that people can easily follow and join conversations about what they're watching in real time, adding to the social experience of TV."

However, despite the march of new technology some people still relied on old school systems.

The figures revealed that more than thousands of people still had a black and white TV licence.