A startling new report conducted by the U.S. Department of Education revealed that the growing trend of binge TV watching has surpassed binge drinking as the leading cause of death of among college students. According to the report, 2,381 college students nationwide died from binge TV watching related injuries during 2012, which exceeded the binge drinking deaths among college students over that same period of time.
“Unlike alcohol, you don’t need a fake ID to binge TV watch, just a Netflix subscription,” United State Attorney General Kamala Harris told Hollywood & Swine. “It’s the parents of these college students who suffer the most. It’s a lot less embarrassing to have your child die from alcohol, than is it to lose somebody who tried to finish all eight seasons of ‘Weeds’ in two days.”
The Department of Education’s report broke down the three highest-ranking causes of death from binge TV watching:
— Suicides caused by the severe depression college students suffer after binge-watching a show and realizing they have no more episodes left to watch. Last April, Ben Sumner, a junior at Ohio State University, threw himself off the roof of his apartment building after going through the entire series of “24” in less than three weeks. In a sad twist of fate, just weeks after Sumner’s funeral, network executives at Fox announced its decision to bring back “24” next season.
— Asphyxiation caused by binge watching too many horrible episodes of bad television in one sitting. In May, Kristen Farris, a sophomore at the University of Washington, suffocated after watching the 15th straight terrible episode of the CW series “Vampire Diaries” on Netflix.
— Murdered by their roommates after they refuse to stop obsessively binge watching a show or talking about it endlessly in their dorm room. In February, Joel Kipling, a freshman at Boston College, while on the third straight day of a ”Breaking Bad” binge watching marathon, was bludgeoned to death by his roommate with a bong.
In response to the rising death toll among college students, Netflix is considering limiting how many episodes of shows like “Arrested Development” and “House of Cards” a viewer under the age of 25 can instantly stream in one day. Experts believe these tactics will be useless since college students with serious binge viewing addictions will simply go to Amazon Prime or Hulu Plus to get their fix.