Editor’s Note: When we set out to explore the phenomenon of cord cutting in America, we braced ourselves for dramatic numbers. The numbers returned from our survey of 5,000 Americans were downright unbelievable though—that is, if you read them as nationally representative. They are not. No doubt, if 59 percent of our country’s consumers had already cut cable, traditional cable companies would be decimated and out of business. An interpretation of this survey must begin with the caveat that the survey’s respondents likely skew younger and more budget-conscious than the average American. Please read the results as indicative of trends in that consumer demographic, and we’ll continue to study this fast-evolving subject.


Netflix spent $13 billion on content last year, Amazon spent $5 billion, and Hulu gave subscribers access to $30 billion of content. As for traditional cable, well, ESPN still comes with most standard packages.

As industry analysts forecast another merciless year of cord cutting—the act of cancelling cable TV in favor of streaming services and web content— our recent survey of 5000 Americans indicates that cord cutting is well underway. Survey results indicate that 59 percent have cut the cord and another 29 percent are thinking about it.

As part of our survey we also looked at state-level data, to see which parts of America are most aligned with the cord cutting trend. Check out the results below.


In December 2018, we surveyed 5,000 Americans to establish their relationship with cable TV and streaming services. Survey respondents ranged in age from 18 to 69 years old and represented all 50 US states (however, seven states did not produce enough responses to be included in our analysis: Louisiana, Alaska, Montana, Rhode Island, Vermont, Wyoming, North Dakota).