Research: TV #1 way to fuel passions

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One of the biggest global studies ever undertaken to explore peoples’ passions reveals that when it comes to favourite pastimes including sports, food, home, motoring and nature & wildlife, people are more likely to turn to TV than any other source for inspiration and information.

The global survey involving 13,000 participants, ran across 13 markets and was commissioned by real life entertainment programmer Discovery.

TV is the #1 way people fuel passions with 93 per cent of respondents claiming it is their top source of inspiration. Social media was #2 with 67 per cent and ‘other people’ in #3 place with 66 per cent.

TV is significantly more powerful than any other third party including social media for triggering a passion. Amongst the 35-54 age group, TV is five times more likely to trigger a passion than social media – and even among the hard to reach 18-24 demographic, TV is more than twice as likely to trigger a passion than social media.

More than eight out of 10 of us have one or more passions in life, with the average number of passions amongst individuals being four. Our passions are typically developed as teenagers and are initially inspired by our parents (33 per cent), TV (23 per cent) and our peers (15 per cent).

“For a lot of people, television programmes have been some of the big extrinsic triggers for things that then become these big intrinsic passions,” explains Dr Tom Chatfield, Tech Philosopher, Author. “Because you get this very personal, human, visceral exposure to a story, to an event. It’s not like reading about it, it’s not like hearing about it, it’s like being immersed in it and that can help people discover for themselves this emotional spark that will guide them in their own journey of passion and discovery.”

According to the survey, as well as providing happiness, a sense of achievement and fulfilment, passions can help people cope with life’s ups and downs. More than eight out of 10 believe that passions are more important than ever, and nine out of 10 agree that having a passion can help cope with the stress of everyday life.

Having a passion also helps to build a sense of community and combat feelings of isolation in an increasingly disconnected international world. According to the survey, passions bring people closer to other people – eight out of 10 people share a passion with friends and family and seven out of 10 people state that passions give a sense of belonging.

“Passions have always been important to people because they help them define who they are,” notes Dr Nick Southgate, Behavioural Scientist. “In a world that seems more turbulent, where the future seems more uncertain… those things that you can turn to where you have complete agency over what you care about and what it means to you and where it’s going, will become ever more important.”

“This survey highlights that people have a greater desire than ever to be connected to each other and the world around them through their passions,” adds Fulvia Nicoli, EVP Content & Product at Discovery. “At Discovery, we power the passions that make us human with content and stories that inspire people to pursue their passions. From food, to nature and wildlife, and sports including golf, motoring and cycling – we have something to make every superfan happy.”


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