Saturday, April 20, 2024

Research Shows Environmental Impact of Streaming Is Unknown – Sustainability Top Priority

New US consumer research conducted by Bitmovin, a leader in video streaming infrastructure, highlights a great misunderstanding of the sustainable impact of streaming, and confusion over who is ultimately responsible.

More than three quarters of US consumers (78 percent) claim that a sustainable lifestyle is important to them. Yet, when Bitmovin asked consumers about the impact of streaming on the environment, 28 percent of respondents said they thought there was no environmental impact (zero carbon output). 

However, when it was revealed that one hour of streaming produces around 36g CO2e, 59 percent said this was higher than they expected. Furthermore, 78 percent of viewers openly admitted that they had to guess what the environmental impact was.

Consumers can’t seem to reach a consensus on who is responsible for sustainable practices when it comes to streaming either. With over half (57 percent) of respondents believing that streaming infrastructure providers and streaming platforms themselves should be responsible. Whilst, only 20 percent of respondents admitted that responsibility lies with themselves as the viewer.

Despite a lack of knowledge on the matter there is still a demand for sustainable streaming services. 64 percent said they would prioritise a sustainable streaming platform over non-sustainable alternatives. This rose significantly to 90 percent in those aged 35-44. Interestingly, there is a skew in favour of male consumers when it comes to being concerned about a sustainable offering with 77 percent saying they would prioritise sustainable streaming compared with 52 percent of women. 

Stefan Lederer, CEO and Founder commented: “People are demanding much more from businesses regarding sustainability and streaming services are clearly no different. However it’s evident that despite demanding more from their streaming platforms in terms of quality of entertainment and quality of viewing, consumers have received little to no education on the environmental impact – leading to a gulf between their expectations and their understanding.

“Discussions around sustainable streaming bring up important questions about personal vs. organisational responsibility given the current climate emergency. It’s an issue that streaming infrastructure and service providers need to address more openly and one of the first steps to making true genuine change should be transparency and education. It is time for all of us in the streaming industry to self-reflect and ask: what more can we be doing for climate change?

“In order to achieve sustainability we must all work together, viewers, streaming infrastructure providers, and streaming platforms.”


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