Showing, once again, how far behind the curve TV actually is:
by Dawn C. Chmielewski & Yvonne Villarreal
About one-third of all prime-time shows employ some Twitter element as network executives and writers experiment with interactive social media as a tool for attracting viewers and keeping them engaged.
In Syfy’s television reality competition “Opposite Worlds,” Twitter put unprecedented power in the hands of viewers, supplying them with the ability to reward popular contestants with a luxurious spa day while punishing others with a less savory task: cleaning human excrement.
The little blue birdie has fluttered into the writers room on Fox’s “Sleepy Hollow,” inspiring one episode to address viewers’ dismay, voiced loudly on Twitter, over the central character’s Revolutionary War-era attire. For a humorous few moments, Ichabod Crane doffs his period costume for a pair of uncomfortably contemporary skinny jeans.
These shows are just a sample of the sorts of experimentation being done as network executives and producers navigate social media (and interactivity) to attract viewers to the living-room TV and keep them engaged.
About one-third of all prime-time shows employ some Twitter element — from NBC’s “The Voice,” which lets viewers turn to Twitter to “save” performers whom judges have eliminated, to ABC’s “Scandal,” whose actors converse online with viewers as each episode is telecast. Just this month, Twitter cemented its reputation as TV’s favorite follower during the Oscar telecast when host Ellen Degeneres’ star-studded “selfie” set a record for most retweets.
In a nutshell: @Twitter is #trendingwithTV more than ever b4.