Do you suffer from FOMOOT?

If so, you need to buy a PVR. Or learn how to use the iPlayer or something.

New social phenomenon revealed: FOMOOT*

*That’s Fear of Missing Out on Telly

New research has revealed that over a third of Brits admit choosing to stay in to watch their favourite programme rather than go out. This new TV trend and social phenomenon has been coined – FOMOOT (Fear Of Missing Out On Telly).

With the average Brit watching over 4 hours of live TV a day*, those afflicted by FOMOOT, a term coined by Freesat and an update to the well-known term FOMO (fear of missing out), will stay in to watch that favourite programme, even if that means missing out on an important event or commitment.

Research by the subscription-free satellite TV provider, found that Brits are going to extreme lengths as a result of FOMOOT, with nearly a third of Brits (31%) admitting to missing a friend’s or family’s birthday celebration to watch their favourite programme, one in 10 have pulled a sickie to make sure they’re at home to catch the latest episode of a series and a sneaky 4 per cent also admit to watching their favourite programme at work. Seven per cent have even left a wedding or funeral early to catch a much-loved show.

More than one in 10 of us have fallen out with friends or family due to our TV watching habits, with that figure rising to one in five for 16-25 year olds. Bad reactions to missing a beloved show include sulking all night (12%), blaming your partner (7%), throwing the remote control 4%) and even crying (2%). Two per cent of us have even tried to lie about having seen a programme, just to keep up with conversation.

The top 5 programmes Brits don’t want to miss are:

  1. Sherlock (21%)
  2. Doctor Who (17%)
  3. Coronation Street (15%)
  4. Downton Abbey (15%)
  5. Mrs Brown’s Boys (13%)

No indication of the methodology used for this. I’m sure it was entirely scientific and not at all just a weak attempt to get publicity for something Freesat-related.


  • I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.