Time doesn’t stop… Not even for a choc top and extra large soda… Sigh

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I enjoy frequenting the movies but unfortunately time, commitments and life in general interfere and now I often don’t have the opportunity to spare 2 hours enjoying a choc top while relaxing in front of the big screen. This week I am unable to attend the movies as desired for this weeks university task. As much as I would have liked to, this week is extremely hectic when it comes to my life responsibilities in between university assignments and work my birthday weekend approaches and I’m frantically trying to complete all my necessary university work before I celebrate.

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When implying these constraints to Torsten Hagerstrand’s time geography all three constraints; capacity, coupling and authority reflect my situation.

In terms of capacity these are biological constraints of nature. Unfortunately the times I do have available to see a movie is often during my sleeping or lunch breaks this week. For example I have an hour free on Wednesday to eat lunch and I don’t finish class till 6:30 that evening, therefore If I chose to see a movie that night it would interfere with my sleeping schedule. Furthermore I work Thursday-Saturday. On Thursday and Friday they are night shifts and do not finish till 8:30-9 and normally the final movies air that time for the evening. On Saturday night I have my birthday celebration which continues into Sunday while that night I’ll be frantically continuing university work as I have two assignments and an exam due next week.

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In terms of coupling constraints I need transportation to access the movie theatre. I do own a car but then I have to pay for parking which discourages my choice in attending the theatre. Furthermore If I attended the theatre in the Highlands where I work it’s a 20 minute drive from my home constituting in petrol money which I just don’t have the funds to spare if I’m attending alone.

Authority constraints is the biggest issue – money. Often the movie theatre is expensive, although several movie theatres do offer student discounts, sparing the money for a cinema outing does add up in the end. There’s transportation, tickets and snack costs which can often result in a hefty amount of money spent. Majority of university students are on tight budgets, specifically living off Centrelink, therefore they are discouraged to attend, which would coincide with the results highlighted further down which indicate that a large percentage of individuals my age often only frequent the movies once a year, which are worrying statistics for movie owners.

Funnily enough Screen Australia recognises that in 2014 participation between 14-24 year old’s were the highest among age groups, but at the same time when comparing participation to previous years it has considerably decreased among my generation probably due to these constraints whereas the other age groups increased with the 50+ having the highest recording.

Statistics also indicate that the proportion of Australians attending the cinema once a year has averaged to 69% since 2000, with an average of 8 visits a year per person. Over the course of 8 years the percentage has decreased from 72% to 68%. The frequency of attendance has also minimally decreased since this time from an average of 7.8 in 2004 to 6.9.

However according to the most recent data posted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australians love attending the cinema, well I must admit who can resist those glorious choc tops (yes I love choc tops, OKAY). More than 12 million Australians attended the cinema between 2013-14 and it remains our favourite cultural venture with 66% over 15 at least visiting the cinema once per year and however in saying that a whooping 86% of Australians attended the cinema once between 2013-14, therefore do we really love it? These are questionable statistics especially for small movie owners, if these statistics remain or increase small business owners may be forced to close due to funding constraints which could seriously impact the future of the theatre industry and possibly even result in movie theatres increasing their ticket prices in order to compensate for this which will then in-turn discourages individuals especially young adults to attend, therefore resulting in these statistics increasing – so is this a one edged sword? Is there no positive outcome?

The ABS also indicates that “Attendance rates generally decreased for older age groups, with a 94 per cent attendance rate for people aged 18-24 years compared with 66 per cent for people aged 75 years and over.” said Mr Niedorfer. Once again attendance was most popular between 18-24 year olds (85%) as opposed to those aged 75 and over (37%).
Well although my life might be a little too hectic for a cinema outing, it still seems to be going strong amongst my generation even though we are limited in how many times we averagely visit the cinema. I’ll try my very best to attend the cinema when able to as I don’t want to see the theatre industry declining due to money and time constraints.

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Attendance rate (%)1 Frequency2
14–24 yrs 25–34 yrs 35–49 yrs 50+ yrs 14–24 yrs 25–34 yrs 35–49 yrs 50+ yrs
1974 91.9% 79.7% 61.1% 42.1% 16.4 8.7 6.9 5.6
1976 94.4% 77.4% 60.2% 35.9% 14.3 7.3 5.4 4.7
1978 91.9% 67.6% 56.2% 35.9% 14.5 9.0 5.7 4.7
1980 91.3% 71.3% 55.1% 35.7% 14.2 7.9 5.7 4.7
1982 92.2% 69.7% 57.6% 30.3% 10.4 7.1 5.5 4.3
1984 81.6% 55.9% 50.1% 33.9% 10.2 4.0 2.6 1.6
1986 85.3% 60.2% 51.5% 28.7% 12.6 9.6 8.0 7.2
1988 86.8% 64.6% 52.4% 34.7% 13.1 11.0 8.5 8.6
1990 87.4% 62.1% 58.4% 37.0% 12.7 10.5 9.2 8.9
1992 87.0% 69.0% 62.0% 42.0% 12.4 10.6 9.1 9.1
1994 88.7% 73.2% 67.7% 49.0% 12.2 10.5 9.4 10.1
1996 92.4% 79.3% 74.1% 51.8% 13.0 11.3 10.0 10.6
1998 91.0% 80.1% 73.4% 53.8% 10.6 8.5 6.6 7.5
1999 91.5% 80.3% 72.9% 54.0% 11.3 8.4 6.5 7.4
2000 89.8% 79.2% 70.6% 51.3% 10.8 8.4 6.7 7.6
2001 89.0% 78.2% 72.0% 52.6% 10.3 8.1 7.1 7.7
2002 89.8% 79.8% 73.4% 56.6% 10.2 8.3 6.7 8.1
2003 88.9% 78.3% 72.8% 55.4% 10.2 8.2 6.6 7.8
2004 90.0% 79.3% 73.1% 57.0% 9.8 7.8 6.5 7.4
2005 87.1% 74.6% 69.6% 54.3% 9.3 7.6 6.1 7.3
2006 85.2% 73.2% 69.1% 54.8% 8.9 7.4 6.1 7.3
2007 84.4% 72.9% 68.0% 54.0% 9.0 6.7 6.0 7.2
2008 84.1% 69.9% 68.8% 53.0% 9.3 7.6 5.6 6.9
2009 85.9% 72.8% 69.4% 56.9% 9.7 7.3 5.9 7.0
2010 84.6% 76.0% 70.9% 55.7% 9.3 7.4 5.7 6.9
2011 85.6% 72.4% 68.8% 55.8% 9.2 6.8 5.7 6.8
2012 85.8% 73.5% 68.9% 57.8% 8.5 6.6 5.5 6.9
2013 86.2% 76.1% 70.1% 58.4% 7.6 6.7 5.4 7.5
2014 84.4% 73.8% 68.1% 57.9% 7.9 6.9 5.6 7.0
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One thought on “Time doesn’t stop… Not even for a choc top and extra large soda… Sigh

  1. Hi Amelia
    I’m just not sure that cinema scheduling fits Hagerstrand’s ideas about authority (or authorisation) constraints. Money might come closer. If you’re in a financial position that enables you to buy a ticket, you are granted the authority to enter a movie theatre — and this is a very relevant constraint for many young cinema attenders.
    On the data sources, one thing that really interests me about the ABS data (which the cinema industry quotes all the time!) is that once a year is actually quite low. If I was a movie theatre owner I’d want to hope that people would attend much more regularly than once a year.
    Make time for a quick tidy-up edit of this one at some stage, but I’m really impressed that you were first to respond this week!

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