YOUNG people’s obsession with the internet could spell the end for traditional pastimes like watching Home and Away, according to new research.
The Institute for Studies found that 74% of under-13s are unable to watch an entire episode of the Australian soap opera without touching Alf Stewart’s forehead in the hope of opening another browser.
Concerned parent Tom Logan said: “When I was growing up, the whole household would get together to enjoy television whether it was sitcoms, the news or erotic thrillers.
“It was very much a shared experience, all of us staring at the same screen and helping each other focus for up to half an hour at a time.”
He added: “The storylines on shows like The Bill would be exciting but also carry a moral message that really made you think.
“We would pass crisps around, and sometimes the silence in the room would be punctuated by someone making a comment about a character’s hat.
“And unlike internet sessions, no one would be masturbating.”
Concern over the impact of the internet on television has led parents’ group Parental Guidance to launch ‘TV Is Cool’, a campaign designed to stimulate young people’s interest in traditional broadcasting.
Director Helen Archer said: “We’ve designed a colourful character called Terry the Telly, who is really friendly and always showing great programmes like Hollyoaks and Gossip Girl.
“Meanwhile, his arch enemy is Internet Ivan, a black laptop who sounds a bit Russian and is afraid of daylight.
“He’s also full of tiny paedophiles.”