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Kids in Netflix-Only Homes Have No Clue What Commercials Are

Published On 03/19/2017 Published On 03/19/2017
netflix kids don't know what commercials are
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Ready to feel old? It's even worse than hearing kids talk about the latest cinematic reboot without realizing that it's rebooting something from your childhood. It turns out young whippersnappers and raggamuffins across the nation have no idea what commercials are.

In a limited survey, Exstreamist polled 100 American homes, 50 Netflix-only homes and 50 traditional TV homes. In so-called Netflix-only homes, families use streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other apps that don't carry commercials. So, it makes sense that 82 percent of kids in Netflix-only homes weren't familiar with traditional TV advertisements.

In traditional homes, 38 percent of parents said their kids don't know what TV adverts are. That may because of limited TV viewing or viewing channels like PBS, where there is less reliance on traditional TV advertising because government support helps keep the programming geared toward educational ends.

Exstreamist also shared some of the individual responses, which confirm the suppositions of the survey, like a Netflix-only home that said, "It’s nice being able to leave the TV on for the kids and know they’re not being overwhelmed by ads." At the other end, a traditional TV home noted that their kids like the commercials. "I think my kids like the ads, which I know sounds terrible, but they love watching toy commercials on YouTube on the iPad, go figure," the parent said.

Not being exposed to commercials will likely be seen by most as a positive for kids. And it may be, however, there is also a positive in ensuring kids understand the difference between shows and advertising, which has been a problem in the past. (That doesn't require watching television with commercials.) In the early '70s, studies showed kids couldn't tell the difference between Captain Kangaroo and their in-show advertisements for Schwinn bicycles. 

h/t PC Magazine

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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record but has never met the fingernail lady. Follow him @dlukenelson.

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