I watch a lot of YouTube, like a lot.

Given that I was watching so much to the point I didn’t do much else. I probably spent almost half a day watching it.

During April 26 to May 3, the daily average was 12h 53m, up 133% from the previous week. 1h 27 mins from Productivity, 22m for creativity and 20m entertainment. Total use of 90h 14m

Note that while it isn’t listed, YouTube is like half of that.

I practically lived in YouTube (and my phone in general), refreshing the feed multiple times over, getting sucked into comments and looking to be distracted through random searches and reccomendations. This limited my ability to do things that mattered, so I decided to change that.

Instead of waiting for the videos to come to me, I would go about my week and download the videos using Youtube-DL over the weekend, which I would then watch over the week. Asides from some hookups trying to download the videos, the approach worked!

Last Week Acerage at 11h 4m. 19h 40m on Productivity, 15h 21m on Entertainment and 12h 55m on Creativity. Total 77h 34 m. Top used apps: Safari: 55h 37m, VLC: 12h 26, Youtube 9h 15m, Infuse 5h 36 min, Notes: 5h 28 m, Editorial 4h 33m, GitHub 4h 25 m, Google 1h 54m, GoodReader 1h 49m

I spent less time troweling YouTube, focusing on things that matter to me. While the total use didn’t go down that much, I watched a lot less YouTube, down to about 3-ish hours a day (shown as Infuse and VLC 1).

So if this is going so well, why do I consider this experiment a fail? Well, remember when I mentioned “some hookups”? Well, turns out that YouTube (and my ISP probably) doesn’t like it when you try to download such a large amount of videos at once. This lead to me getting throttled a lot, making the video download process take forever since I had to restart the script the many times it failed.

This frustration annoyed me to the point that I was tempted to scrap this project entirely. What I’ll do instead is that instead of getting everything at the end of the week, I’ll download them periodically when I’ll then review what I downloaded to watch the next week. I’m committed to the whole “slow media” thing.

Asides from this, I’m still trying to fix my relationship with my electronic devices. I really want tech to serve me rather than me serve it. The next thing I want to try is trying to improve my fun time. I get the irony of “organizing leisure time”, but I’m certain I can get more rewarding leisure than just YouTube.

  1. Quick review.

    Both VLC and Infuse have slick UIs. Using VLC, I got annoyed that it didn’t support PiP video. I then switched to Infuse which had it, but playback speed only went up to 2x (vs 4x), captions didn’t work, trying to changing the aforementioned paused the video instead of playing it back like in VLC and it doesn’t have background playback. While the PiP is there, not all videos formats can use it.

    Given those issues, I’ll stick with VLC. ↩︎