A Guide to Binge Watchers, or: How Netflix Changed College

Have you, like me, noticed faculty, staff, and students in offices, hallways, and/or classrooms, blatantly watching at their latest Netflix obsession? Very few of us even bother minimizing those windows to hide our binging.

This blog is dedicated to the emerging categories of campus bingers:

The Negotiator: “Just grade one more essay. Then you can watch an episode of Grace and Frankie.”

The Digressor: “Hey, Dr. Smith, have you watched Riverdale yet? It has interesting connections to adolescent psychology. Maybe we could watch an episode in class?”

The Shamer: “You haven’t seen The Keepers yet? Most of the office already has. Well, we can try to avoid discussing it at lunch.”

The Fear-Monger: “Dear Faculty and Staff: Please remember that the use of Netflix in classrooms is prohibited without written permission from the company. Please submit documentation to the legal office two weeks before showing any content. This will be monitored by I.T.”

The Expense Manager: “Since the university has implemented the policy that expenses for class materials cannot exceed $50, only films on Netflix will be assigned. Instead of I Am Not Your Negro, our class on James Baldwin will watch The People v. O.J. Simpson.”

The Relationship Breaker: “Sure, I liked him a lot, but not enough to share my Netflix login and password.”

The Creative Writer: “and i hear the voices of a thousand women crying / wishing they, too, could burn their orange / for a skimpy black dress / hanging from the bars of their lives.”

The Excuse Maker: “Dear Office Manager: I will not be able to work today because Netflix canceled Sense 8. I am too emotional and would only distract others. I will complete the “Away from Duties’ form upon my return next week. I’m not sure which box to check, however. Is this sick leave, personal leave, or bereavement leave?”

The Academic Opportunist: “Call for Papers: Seeking chapters for an edited work focusing on the role Netflix plays in our courses. We welcome chapters that show the connection between specific courses and television series (i.e., American Government and House of Cards) or on courses that developed from Netflix series (The Sociology of Stranger Things).

I’m sure there are many more out there, but I just started watching 13 Reasons Why and need to get back to it. Don’t worry, it’s for my fall section of Young Adult Literature – who has time to watch Netflix and not connect it to college life?

photo credit: Flickr user islandjoe