The 365 page report shows that in 2007 we spent an average of 7 hours and 9 minutes a day using an array of communications services – up by 6 minutes from 2002. This includes watching television, surfing the net, using our mobiles, talking on a landline phone and listening to the radio.
Our mobile and internet use has increased by the greatest amount. Between 2002 and 2007 the time we spent talking and texting on our mobiles doubled, up from 5 minutes to 10 minutes each day. Meanwhile, time spent on PCs and lap-tops has grown fourfold between 2002 and 2007 – from 6 minutes to 24 minutes per person every day.
Further evidence of how people are actively seeking information rather than being passive receivers of whatever may come their way. Although the data shows an increase in advertising spend online – the fact that people are ignoring television ads implies they will be equally discriminating of promotional messages online.
Greater convergence also makes the physical medium by which someone receives information is less and less important.
As PR practitioners, we need to recognise the implications of such changes in communication consumption. Ensuring people can find information is vital, but this must be credible and address the needs of the active publics who can go elsewhere for alternative views instantly.