700,000 sickies: Netflix lifts the lid on Australia’s binge-watching culture


Netflix has released new data on Australian viewers and their streaming preferences. Here are the things we value most.
Ross Duffer and Matt Duffer aka The Duffer Brothers and Netflix Co-CEO Ted Sarandos attend the press night after party for “Stranger Things: The First Shadow” at The Waldorf Hilton. (Photo by Dave Benett/Getty Images
Australia’s Netflix obsession at a glance
  • 68% of Australians have access to Netflix, making it the most popular streaming service.
  • Australians spend an average of 13.6 hours per week streaming content.
  • 88% of Netflix users engage in binge-watching.
  • Comedy is the favourite genre among viewers, followed by drama, documentaries, and thrillers.
  • 1.1 million Australian viewers (8%) say they have called in sick to work (5%, approximately 634k), snuck into meeting rooms at lunch (3%, approximately 442k) or cancelled a work meeting (3%, approximately 416k) in order to catch up the latest episode of their favourite show
  • 29% of respondents identify as fanatics, deeply engaged with content beyond watching.
  • Men and Gen Z are more likely to use Netflix and engage in binge-watching.

Stranger Things, comedy and sickies. Netflix has surveyed and Aussies have spoken.

The streaming platform that brings us the cult series ‘Stranger Things,’ says that 68% of our population has access to Netflix.

And 36% of those surveyed list Stranger Things in their top 3 programs. A quarter of people mention The Addams Family spinoff Wednesday, making it the second most-cited show. And The Witcher holds the third spot with 22%.

Despite the dark undertones of those shows, 47% of Australian viewers say it is comedy that is in their top 3 list of content to watch. Drama, documentaries and thrillers are also popular.

88% of Australian viewers say they have engaged in marathon viewing, watching content back-to-back. On average, viewers spend around 13.6 hours a week watching content online, which equates to almost a month a year, according to the research results. Though not all of that happens on Netflix – the survey asked about streaming preferences generally, not only on its platform.

Where that viewing happens can be a little unusual. 21% of those surveyed said they have watched Netflix on the toilet. 14% have streamed Netflix at the office. Parties, dates, and intimate situations were also cited by more than 10% of people.

When not streaming at the office, Aussies are calling in sick from work to stay home and binge the latest episode of their favourite show. Netflix says that nearly 700,000 have pulled a sickie to stay home to stream and chill.

Source: Netflix

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