Netflix has become one of the biggest, baddest entertainment distributors in the world. Ever since its migration to the streaming business model in 2007, we've witnessed company's mind-boggling growth, going from 7.4 million viewers, to over 100 million in the last ten years. One of the company's most attractive assets has been its vast slate of original TV series. Year after year, people tune in to watch critically-acclaimed shows like House of Cards, Stranger Things, Daredevil, and Jessica Jones. The list goes on.
Unlike cable #TV networks, though, Netflix has always been remarkably secretive when it comes to its viewership numbers. Overall, the company enjoys keeping fans in the dark when it comes to how many people have a subscription to enjoy its prolific catalogue.
Recently though, Netflix broke its self-imposed secrecy rule by releasing a portion of its viewership numbers. If you're wondering why they would start divulging this information after so many years, read on.
A New Species Of Binge-Watchers Is Upon Us
As it turns out, the streaming giant is celebrating the rise of a new type of viewers: "Binge Racers." Racers are brave fans who take on the gargantuan task of finishing a season of any given show in less than 24 hours. Or, as Netflix itself explains it, "Accomplishing in a day what takes others weeks to achieve, Binge Racers strive to be the first to finish by speeding through an entire season within 24 hours of its release."
This type of audience has been around for quite some time, but it's seen a considerable rise in recent years. According to Netflix, there are currently 8.4 million Binge Racers around the world, a number that went up from 200,000 in 2013. The site released a comprehensive chart detailing the shows people love to race-binge the most, and composition of said list isn't that surprising:
- 1. Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life
- 2. Fuller House
- 3. Marvel's The Defenders
- 4. The Seven Deadly Sins
- 5. The Ranch
- 6. Santa Clarita Diet
- 7. Trailer Park Boys
- 8. F is for Family
- 9. Orange Is the New Black
- 10. Stranger Things
- 11. Friends from College
- 12. Atypical
- 13. Grace and Frankie
- 14. Wet Hot American Summer
- 15. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
- 16. House of Cards
- 17. Love
- 18. GLOW
- 19. Chewing Gum
- 20. Master of None
According to the site's official press release (and proven by the list of most-watched shows), both half-hour and hour-long series have a similar amount of audiences, meaning that there's not much of a preference when it comes to the duration of a program.
Aside from the tales that people enjoy binging in less than a day, Netflix also released the top 20 countries where Binge Racers reside. Canada took the top spot, with the United States close behind, taking second place.
2. United States
12. United Kingdom
14. New Zealand
20. United Arab Emirates
As for which series are more popular to race-binge in which countries, The Defenders is in the top spot in North Korea, Trailer Park Boys dominates Canada, and #FullerHouse is the champion in Ecuador. Unsurprisingly, the people at Netflix are quite happy with this type of audience, as Vice President of original series, Brian Wright, stated:
"There's a unique satisfaction that comes from being the first to finish a story –– whether it's the final page of a book or the last, climactic moments of your favorite TV show. Netflix allows you to watch in a way you never could before, and there's nothing better than seeing a show engage our members and ignite a passion for viewing."
We recently learned that Netflix is investing $8 billion on original content. With so much at stake in that investment and larger companies contemplating pulling their content from the streaming platform, it's a major plus to see the site getting that much support for its own creations.
While admittedly this wasn't the reveal we've been hoping for in terms of the company's viewership numbers, it's nonetheless an insight into how the platform works and a snapshot of just how dedicated some viewers can be.
One of Netflix's heaviest hitters, #StrangerThings, is returning for Season 2 on October 31. While we wait for it to arrive, check out the newest heart-pumping trailer:
What do you think about the rise of Netflix's Binge Racers? How do you feel about Netflix giving us a peek into its viewership numbers? Let me know in the comments!