It’s the weekend. You’re supposed to be going out with your friends, rocking it up at a gig or attending that all-important social event and suddenly you realise – the latest episode of your favourite TV programme is on, right now! And you’re going to miss it. You’ll be a social pariah, an outcast – what will you talk about come Monday morning when everyone else has seen what you haven’t?


So you make up some excuse, I’m sick (cough, cough), I have other arrangements, I’m can’t get to my phone – and then you sit down in a state of perpetual worry, fretting about the consequences of your actions until your favourite programme finally comes on the television.

Sound familiar? Yes? Well good news! Apparently – this is an actual thing. According to Freesat, this new phenomena is called FOMOOT, which stands for Fear of Missing out on Telly. No matter how much we all might deny it, there may have come a time when the new episode of Doctor Who or Sherlock is on and we’ve just had to stop everything and watch it (especially if new episodes only occur every 2 years).

Freesat states that new research has found out that “over a third of Brits” admit to staying in to watch a programme, even if it means they miss out on important social events – shocker. Though whether the research, carried out by Freesat after launching a new app, was carried out with the most rigorous of standards is still up for question.

Apparently, more than one in ten of us have also fallen out with friends or family “due to our TV watching habits” and the figure (even more unsurprisingly) rises to one in five amongst the 16-25 year olds. It’s official – we are possibly too committed to our TV shows. Apparently, some of the top programmes people can’t stand to miss are Sherlock (no surprises there) with 21%, Doctor Who (17%), Coronation Street (15%) and Downton Abbey (15%).

It would appear that television has become quite a draw for audiences who are keen to witness live broadcasting of their favourite shows and after all, who can blame us? You know when you need your Game of Thrones fix. Apparently, common bad reactions to missing a beloved show include sulking all night, blaming your partner and even crying. Ouch. Perhaps the safest thing to do if you happen to be the friend/relative of the person who missed their show would be to leave the immediate area; and quickly.

So, is there any way of combating this problem – will we ever venture outside? I suppose the answer is quite simple; probably not. However, perhaps a little bit of diligent research will help us calculate when our favourite show is on and extensive planning will make sure we work our schedules around it. It’s either that or we miss out; take your pick.