Media Use Log

“Some worry that people who live tech-saturated lives (especially the young) have come to expect and even to require instant stimulation, fun, entertainment, and/or digital connection at all times—that they expect never to be bored.” (Chayko, Mary; Superconnected, 2017)


The chapter in which this quote is grabbed from immediately reminded me of a mini project I had done earlier this month. In my critical media literacy class, my professor had us log our media use for 3 days in a row. I chose to record my usage on a set of days where I didn’t have any obligations outside of the house. Here are my results:

Media Consumption Over a 3-Day Period

On mobile unless otherwise stated;  a * indicates internet was not required

Day One:
12:00-12:03AM … Youtube (Dearly Bethany) on CPU
9:31-10:02AM … Reddit/Google Newsfeed/Instagram/Facebook
11:36-11:52AM … Reddit
12:00-12:01PM … Reddit
12:10-12:11PM … Google Newsfeed
12:58-1:23PM … Crunchyroll (Boruto) on CPU
1:25-1:49PM …Overwatch on CPU
2:09-4:13PM … File Explorer (JAG) on Xbox*
6:59-7:04PM … Facebook Messenger (Sabrina/Joanne)
7:31-7:38PM … Facebook Messenger (Sabrina)
7:47-7:49PM … Discord
8:07-9:50PM … Overwatch/Discord/Facebook on CPU
10:14-10:23PM … Instagram
11:15-11:59PM … Overwatch/Discord on CPU

Total: 395 minutes

End of day notes: checked Google/email quickly for a few things every once in a while, received a text in the morning, shopped online here and there, read a couple of tech blog posts in the evening

Day Two:
12:00-12:34AM … Overwatch/Discord on CPU
12:40-3:14AM … File Explorer (JAG) on Xbox
9:59-10:14AM … Email/Instagram/Reddit
10:45-12:30PM … Reddit/Instagram
12:40-12:52PM … Webtoons
1:08-1:37PM … YouTube on CPU
3:02-3:31PM … Overwatch on CPU
4:55-5:12PM … Instagram
5:13-5:23PM … Google Newsfeed
5:34-7:01PM … File Explorer (JAG) on Xbox*
8:10-8:11PM … Discord
8:22-9:07PM Reddit/Discord
9:30-11:59PM … Overwatch/Discord/Reddit on CPU

Total: 787 minutes

End of day notes: checked email every once in a while, extra time in the afternoon spent on Canvas looking at assignments for classes/shopping on Amazon, researched laser printers in the evening briefly

Day Three:
12:00-2:00AM Overwatch/Discord on CPU
10:00-10:28AM … Reddit/Discord
11:04-12:08PM … Reddit/Discord/Facebook Messenger
12:14-12:15PM … Reddit
12:37-1:01PM … Crunchyroll (My Hero Academia)
4:30-4:42PM … Discord on CPU
4:46-4:49PM … Google Newsfeed
5:32-5:39PM … Radio*
6:29-6:36PM … Radio*
8:08-8:37PM … File Explorer (JAG) on Xbox*
8:40-11:59PM … Overwatch/Discord on CPU

Total: 495 minutes

End of day notes: a couple hours spent reading articles online pertaining to the BIS235 online discussion in the afternoon

Basically: technology rules my life.

Honestly, it’s hard to get away from it all. The moment I set down my phone to rest my mind, my brain immediately has me pick it up again. It’s so difficult with how much information is out there; I pretty much compulsively check sites like Reddit to get more and more entertainment. I was barely conscious of my media use at all, and I often forgot to add to the log each day (hence the end of day notes). I use up so much of my day connected to the web that it’s almost scary – except, I think I’m fine with it.

Using various media outlets through the technology at our fingertips allows us to stay connected and be able to communicate. As a social creature of habit, it makes sense why we’re so set on being online all the time. Through Facebook Messenger and Discord, I’m able to contact my friends all over the United States in just seconds. I can grab my news off the web in a flash and it’s all up-to-date unlike traditional print media sources. When I want to unwind, my video subscriptions and video games provide quick means of entertainment. It’s all so accessible and the fact that it makes me feel content is enough to justify what would have been seen as extreme use just a decade ago.

Still, putting my media use in a log really does change my perspective of the world quite a bit. Through this exercise, it was made clear that people are heavily reliant on technology in their daily lives. There’s pretty much no getting away from it unless you go camping in an area that happens to be out of range of cell phone signal and you accidentally forgot your external battery at home. It’s become a staple in western societies, and I think most of us agree that this age of media dominance is here to stay.


2 thoughts on “Media Use Log”

  1. I think that this is a great time to invoke the “don’t use the word ‘technology’ ” to better understand what we do with our time. Are you learning? Reading news? Connecting with people in ways that deepen relationships? If we’re doing more of these sorts of things, do we know it’s bad? Its it “reliant” or “now convenient?” I appreciate some authors also recommending that we should log what else we’re doing all day — getting exercise? Connecting with people in person? Finding relaxation? As long as we’re sustaining healthy lives, how alarmed should we be?? All really important questions!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is super interesting. I have an iPhone and with the new update there is a “screen time’ feature that lets me know every Sunday how much time I spend on my phone. It’s so interesting, because I have seen a pattern. When I am not “busy” I use my phone non-stop way more and when I am busy, there is like no screen time. Basically, I can’t be bored (though I am even when busy). And because I can’t be bored, I make sure that I am doing something with my phone constantly.

    Liked by 1 person

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