Today the use of the internet encompasses all kinds of human endeavors: from finance and shopping, through interpersonal communication, work activities and study, to entertainment and even health care. The world is very different from 20 years ago, when the XNUMXst century was just beginning.
According to World Bank data, the percentage of people who use the internet with respect to the total population reached 2017% on a global scale in 49, 66% in Latin America and the Caribbean and 68% in Venezuela.
The specialized portal statista.com places the global average internet penetration rate at 59,5% in 2021. South America reaches an average of 72%, according to the same source. These data lead to the question of the use of the internet in our country, taking into account the onslaught of the current economic crisis.
At the beginning of August, we conducted a digital survey on the website and social networks of Últimas Noticias to see how Venezuelans watched the Olympic Games: on open TV, pay TV or through the internet. Although the distribution was more or less balanced between the three options, the most striking thing was that the number of people who watched the Olympics online exceeded that who did it on cable television. So, we asked ourselves: "Could we say that it is easier for people in Venezuela to access the internet, be it through mobile data or fixed connection, to consume entertainment than the already traditional cable companies?" We had found a sign.
We decided to ask people, in a digital survey similar to the one mentioned, through which medium they consume the most entertainment. By the way, we inquire about what type of content is the most consumed. To obtain a little more detailed information, we include two “filter questions”, to know the distribution by sex and age.
Between August 23-26, we got 1.357 unique responses and the result was as follows.
At first glance, we have that cable TV takes the biggest piece of the cake, with 35,1%. However, we note that the second and third place are occupied by Social Networks (26,6%) and YouTube (14,6%). Together these two options exceed the one that came in first place with 41%. But if we add open signal TV to cable (9,4%), traditional television rises to 44,5%.
The fight looks close, but to define the verdict you have to incorporate the most innovative option, which certainly helps to build the revealing data. The Netflix streaming platform reached 8,1% of use preference and we can add another 1% of the other online TV on demand options (Amazon Prime Video, Disney TV, HBO Max).
With this 9,1%, we have that the consumption of internet entertainment, that is, Social Networks + YouTube + Streaming, reaches 50,3% of preferential regular use among the people who participated in our survey. In this way, the consumption of online content exceeds traditional TV (air + cable) by almost 6 percentage points.
The option "Others" reached the remaining 5,2%, but these data were not significant since most of them correspond to responses that had nothing to do with the subject of the survey, poor understanding of the question, etc.
Soap opera missed
When analyzing the type of content that users prefer, we also found very interesting data. For example, telenovelas, an audiovisual genre that was once so popular in our country, only reached 3% preference. Most of it was taken by movies (27,5%) and series (21%). This is completely logical given the dominance of cable TV and the overwhelming boom in Internet content consumption. Those two categories make up the main entertainment offering on both types of platform.
Here it is striking that the option "Videos" (16,7%) came very close to Sports (17,5%). This should also be read in relation to the importance of using internet services, such as social media and especially YouTube. It is known that in networks such as Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and Twitter, video is the king of attention. And it is quite remarkable that, practically, these formats are competing for the place of a type of entertainment that has historically been as popular as sports.
When we analyze the results based on sex, we notice some very interesting data. They exceed men (10%) by 34,3 points (24,4%) in the consumption of social networks. In the case of YouTube, men reach 15,6% compared to 11% of women. But it is striking that Netflix consumption is more female (9,7%) than male (7,7%).
When we add social networks + YouTube + Netflix, we obtain the definitive data: women dominate the trend of digital entertainment with 55%, while men reach 47,7%.
Regarding the type of content, we can say that men are from movies and women are from series. The consumption of films reaches 28,7% in males and 23,3% in females. But the difference is much more marked in the case of series: it is the first preference for women, with 31%; while in men it reaches 18,2%.
Sports are involved here, which are the second male option, with 21,4%. This preference only reached 3,4% in women.
Another striking fact is that video consumption is quite similar between the two sexes, with women (17%) slightly ahead of men (16,6%).
Young people are the change
The analysis of the data by age groups is quite revealing of the general trend that we have highlighted in this study: the rise of the consumption of “online” entertainment. Looking at the detail of the results by age, we realize that clearly young people are driving the paradigm shift. And the agent of this change are social networks, as you have surely been able to suppose. Let's see:
We immediately realize that the most relevant data is located in the group of people between 15 and 30 years old. 45,5% of this segment prefer social networks to entertain themselves. It also scores in the case of YouTube, with 21,5%.
If we add Social Networks + YouTube + Streaming, we have that among the youngest the consumption of “online” entertainment dominates with an overwhelming 78,6%. This data reaches 55,6% in the group between 31 and 45 years old. Already in the largest segments, digital drops below 50%.
We can see the opposite trend in the case of television, both cable and broadcast. It is progressively decreasing from being the main option in those over 60 years of age to its minimum expression among the younger population.
The same is true in terms of the type of content. Young people are leading the trends towards the most current formats. In the population between 15 and 30 years old, the most consumed content is Video, with 30,6% preference. In second place, very close, are the series with 28,9%. Cinema is located in this group in third place, with 19,8%.
Films are regaining their dominance as the age of the population increases. The 31-45 year-old group is torn between cinema (24,8%) and series (24,5%). Those aged 46-60 years clearly prefer movies, with 28%, and second, series with 18,8%. In the case of those over 60 years of age, cinema dominates with 30,9% and sports follow with 19,1%.
The networks belong to the girls and the cable belongs to the gentlemen
Now let's see, for those who like to go even deeper into the details of this data, two series of graphs with our "filter variables" (sex and age) crossed. The first series shows the preference of means of consumption by age groups and sex. The second does the same with the content type.
In the younger population (15-30 years), women lead the consumption of social networks, with 57%. In men they also occupy the first place, but already with 38,2%.
In the 31-45 age group, the preference changes, by very little, towards Cable TV, with both sexes paired around 34%. It should be noted here that, in the case of women, social networks almost took first place in this segment as well.
When we move to the 46-60 age group, cable begins to set a trend, with first places in both sexes around 38%. However, in second place, Social Networks once again show female dominance.
In the 61-75-year-old sector, cable consolidates its leadership with 39% in the case of men and 3% in women. Here it is striking that grandmothers and grandfathers are watching YouTube more than broadcast television.
We now turn to the second series of graphs, where we will observe the type of content by age and sex.
The youngest group (15-30 years) shows, as we saw above, the dominance of videos as a content preference. But it highlights that, as with social networks, the trend is clearly being marked by women, with 35,6% compared to 27,6% of men.
The dominance of the series among the population aged 31-45 years is also driven by women, who prefer them by 36%, compared to 20% of men.
In the case of 46-60 year olds, films lead with men ahead with 28% and women with 25%. But in terms of series, women stand out with a 29,8% preference compared to 15,8% of men. Sports are involved here, taking 21% of male attention.
Movies also dominate the population over 60 years of age. Women prefer them in 32,3% and men in 30,6% of cases. The series are more of the ladies (26,2%) than of the men (17,6%). Again, sports define this difference, as they lead men in 22%.
Taking into account the limitations of this type of digital survey, all these data can be very useful to approximate the trends of cultural consumption in our country. More complete studies are needed in this area, with more powerful and precise tools and a greater scope, so that we can establish the map of the care of Venezuelans in the XNUMXst century. This can be very useful to define both public policies and commercial and political strategies. @angelgonzalezvn