The small screen, the idiot tube, and the babysitter are just a few names that the television set has been called throughout its existence. Big, small, HD, black and white, mounted on the wall, or sitting on a stand, the exact dimensions and features never really mattered. From the moment the television was introduced to the world, generations of people took notice. Stars were born on it, frozen meals became synonymous with it, and the glow of the screen often outlined the viewers who sat watching it for hours. However, as the world changes, so too does the television industry.
Through the hard work and ingenuity of Philo Farnsworth, an American inventor, the first successful electronic television transmission occurred in 1927. Ultimately, electronic televisions bested another kind of television that was making advances at the time. The mechanical television, invented by John Logie Baird, did not have the same staying power as its electronic competitor. One million homes had televisions in 1948. 9% of homes had television in 1950. That number drastically jumped after the decade. By 1960 90% of homes had a television.
According to Nielsen, 95.9% of homes in the US are considered TV households. Nielsen delineates this “as having televisions that receive traditional TV signals via broadcast, cable, satellite or a broadband Internet connection.” While this number is down from the 2017 estimate of 96.5% it still remains a significant portion of the population. One might think with the advent of the Internet and cord-cutting, television watching might have gone down. However, according to The Atlantic, the period of 2009 to 2010 was the peak of American household television watching on average. During that time, the average American household watched 8 hours and 55 minutes of television. This is a staggering amount, and although that number has gone down, the time spent in front of the television still remains high.
When the phrase television safety is thrown around, the conversation might center around the actual content on the screen. However, television safety doesn’t just have to do with the actual content on television. It can also deal with the actual physical television set.
From 2006 to 2013, there were 136,100 emergency room visits connected to TV tip-overs. 26% of these tip-overs occur to children under the age of 9. From 2000 to 2013, there were 279 deaths that involved falling televisions. Of these deaths 67% were children under the age of 10.
With so many households in possession of televisions and so much time spent around the device, it’s clear that precautions need to be taken. While people might be shifting their viewing habits from actual televisions to other devices such as phones, tablets, and computers, there are still plenty of television sets in homes across America. A television can provide a unique experience. It can bring groups together and allow for a person to unwind alone. That being said, safety is should be considered when televisions are placed in a room. These electrical appliances are heavy and can cause damage to human life in some instances. Obviously, accidents happen that can’t be foreseen, but every precaution should be taken to limit such accidents.