How Out of Touch Is the Entertainment Media?

Last updated: April 7, 2022

Introduction

Using Metascores and user scores from 2000 through 2021, both of which are allowed to range from 0 to 100, I measure the extent to which the media is “out of touch” with the general public for four different types of entertainment media: video games, television shows, movies, and music albums. The “out of touch” measurement is taken to be the magnitude of difference between Metascores and users scores, on average, of media released each quarter of each year.

Video Games

There are 18,676 video games in the sample. There is a slight upward trend (p = 0.019), suggesting that gaming critics have become slightly more out of touch over the last 20 years. Around the year 2000, gaming media are out of touch by about 9.3 points, and are out of touch by about 9.8 points by 2022. The increase in disagreement over time is likely driven by relatively harsher perceptions of users.1

games

Television Shows

There are 3,407 television shows in the sample. There is a downward trend (p = 0.002), suggesting that TV critics have become less out of touch over the last 20 years. Around the year 2000, TV media are out of touch by about 14.8 points, and are out of touch by about 12.8 points by 2022.

tv

Movies

There are 10,425 movies in the sample. There is a downward trend (p < 0.001), suggesting that movie critics have become less out of touch over the last 20 years. Around the year 2000, movie media are out of touch by about 18 points, and are out of touch by about 11 points by 2020.

movies

Albums

There are 11,443 albums in the sample. There is a downward trend (p < 0.001), suggesting that music critics have become less out of touch over the last 20 years. Around the year 2000, music critics are out of touch by about 12 points, and are out of touch by about 7 points by 2020.

albums

Entertainment Media as a Whole

There are 43,951 pieces of entertainment media in the sample. There is a downward trend (p < 0.001), suggesting that entertainment media have become less out of touch over the last 20 years. Around the year 2000, entertainment media are out of touch by about 12.5 points, and are out of touch by about 8 points by 2020.

allmedia

Conclusions

The entertainment media as a whole appears to be less out of touch today than it was 20 years ago. The effect is most pronounced in movies and music, whereas the video game media appear to be slightly more out of touch over time. In more recent years, movie and music media appears to be the least out of touch with an average disagreement of around 7-8 points, whereas video game and TV media are out of touch by 11-13 points.