Millennials Are Watching Less Sports Than Previous Generations
In news that should come as a shock to many, Millennials are watching less sports than generations of the past. If you have no idea what a Millennial is and think it’s absurd to lump 80 million people into one group, you’re probably right. Regardless, demographers and researchers typically use the early-1980s as starting birth years and ending birth years, ranging from the mid-1990s to early-2000s.
I was born in 1985, but someone born in 1999 could also be considered a Millennial. Most generations are classified into a demographic group within a certain period of 20 years, but I’m not going to give you a history lesson. I’m here to tell you that we Millennials are tuning out of sports.
Take a look at the differences between the younger people and the older people when it comes to sports versus other entertainment.
Millennials in the 18-24 category are well below any other age group. They also don’t care about news and current affairs, so that’s a bit worrying, so let’s stick to sports before getting even more depressed about the future.
Is this limited to the United States? No, this survey that was conducted by Ampere Analysis is based on online surveys with 31,500 people in 10 countries. But let’s keep it closer to home. Have you heard that the NFL has viewers lately? It’s true. Have a look at the extreme drop during the 2015-2016 season:
It’s not even limited to the Millennials tuning out of the NFL, but all age groups combined have gone down by 15%. I can’t directly attribute the brain damage scandal of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), but it certainly doesn’t help things much. Hell, every time I see two players completely bash their heads together during a game I’ll think, “I hope one of them doesn’t murder his family or jump off a bridge.” That’s not even being funny, but something that happens a lot in all sports that include heavy impact to the head.
I can’t speak for everyone when it comes to their love of sports, but I can’t say that I’ve been watching more than usual. Usually, I don’t sit and watch any sports teams that aren’t the teams I root for. I can’t watch the Dolphins play the Rams because I don’t care about either team, I can’t watch the Yankees play the Red Sox because baseball is boring enough, so I will just stick to watching the Detroit Tigers (which is hard enough already).
The NFL is the sports king in America, but it looks like it’s falling more than its rising since 2010. Could it be the election, the protesting of The National Anthem, how many flags are thrown on almost every play, or that people are over it? Maybe, but being Detroit Lions fan, I think I’m pretty used to dramatic failure each year. Could this be the year they get to the Super Bowl? If they don’t, I’ll probably do what I do when any of my teams are out of it: turn on old The Simpsons episodes.
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Jeff Sorensen is an author, writer and occasional comedian living in Detroit, Michigan. You can look for more of his work on The Huffington Post, UPROXX, BGR and by just looking up his name.