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Mouse potato is a term for someone who spends a lot of leisure time or discretionary time sitting in front of a screen connected to the Internet. It is a modern take on the older term "couch potato," that refers to someone who spends a lot of time in front of a television.
Experts point out that the terms "couch potato" and "mouse potato" are related to an overarching struggle between broadcast providers that use network television, and those that use online platforms. One of the biggest differences between the two is that the online model offers much more opportunity for two-way communication, interactivity and audience involvement. By contrast, television, which evolved decades earlier, is simply a passive medium. The industry is now seeing the online and television models converge in new and interesting ways, where the television programming of the future may end up being purchased over the Internet, then watched in a web browser. The evolution of smart TVs is also changing the game on how consumers would be labeled, and how they would choose to spend their time receiving broadcasted programming.