Read spoilers, discuss endlessly, watch an episode: The mad way we watch TV now

IN the olden days you’d do this freaky thing of just watching a TV programme you were interested in. Now you do all of this before even thinking about turning the telly on.

Scour the internet for information

The new series isn’t out for a year, but that doesn’t stop you from scouring the internet for every morsel of information you can, including boring industry press releases about the casting of minor roles. Before the internet you’d just see it in the Radio Times and be pleasantly surprised, rather than wasting hours of your one precious life pursuing tiny details about fictional people.

Read spoilers

When Den gave Angie divorce papers in the Christmas Day episode of Eastenders in 1986, the nation was as blindsided and upset as she was. Nowadays, you’d have known about it three months in advance and would have already shared a meme of her shocked face several hundred times.

Discuss on social media

Don’t let the fact you haven’t seen the episode yet stop you from discussing it in granular detail, with most of your information based on a Reddit post written by someone claiming to be an extra in the series. It turns out they were lying, but it helped you waste an entire afternoon at work, so who gives a shit?

Listen to three separate podcasts

Your partner wants to sit down and watch the episode with you but you haven’t managed that yet, so instead you listen to three different podcasts discussing it on your commute to work. If you weren’t already spoiled by the spoilers, you have now totally removed the last vestiges of mystery that were remaining around the plot and themes.

Watch the show

It’s finally time to enjoy your favourite show and guess what? You’re bored shitless because you know exactly what is going to happen in every scene. Instead of watching, you spend the whole time on your phone reading a recap for another show you like but haven’t seen yet. You’re so glad to be living in the golden age of television.

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You love looking at boobs and buying lightbulbs: Everything the internet algorithm knows about you

PARANOID about what internet algorithms know about you? You should be. Based on your bizarre online activities, they have deduced the following:

You love looking at boobs and buying light bulbs

In quick succession, weirdly enough. One minute you’re scrolling through social media and pausing when a pair of jugs pops up, the next you’re researching which light bulb is most energy efficient and compatible with your fittings. The algorithm thinks this is some weird fetish and is desperately scrambling to find you relevant boob/light bulb-related content.

Your circadian rhythm is absolutely f**ked

Your browser history reveals that after one of the same five ready meals you turn in at 10.30pm and have a little late night scroll for four hours. And thanks to the data it pulls from your health app, the algorithm can tell you’ve been doing this every day for the last eight years. No wonder you’re always sluggish and have a volatile personality. Don’t worry, it’ll only take years for your sleep pattern to return to normal.

You will never run that marathon

According to your App Store history, you’ve downloaded Couch To 5K three dozen times before giving up and deleting it by the second week. No matter how many times you Google marathons in your area, you’re kidding no one; you will never have the necessary fitness and stamina to jog 42 kilometres. That won’t stop the algorithm shoving running shoe ads in your face every five seconds though.

Which Disney character you’re most like and how poor you are

Princess Jasmine, apparently, although it took you dozens of attempts at a quiz to get the result you wanted. And there’s nothing in Aladdin which suggests she frequently bumps along the bottom of her overdraft like you do, or orders takeaways four nights a week. Protest all you want but that’s what your banking app is saying. The numbers don’t lie.

You are unhealthily fixated on your ex

No? Then why do you end up on their social media profiles in the dead of night? Do you roll over in your sleep, accidentally search for their name while unconscious, then proceed to involuntarily scroll all the way back to the photos of when you were together? You might be able to kid yourself into believing that, but the algorithm knows the truth. And as you nurse a broken heart, will try to sell you B&Q gazebo.