In the social sphere

The ever growing relationship between TV and social media is clear for all to see
Roger Field
Roger Field

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The ever growing relationship between TV and social media is clear for all to see. Platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have become a staple medium for programme producers to promote shows and encourage feedback.

The subject features prominently in the July issue of Digital Studio, with social platforms being discussed as an instrumental aspect of commercial productions, and news and sports events.

With so many consumer brands now using Youtube as a key medium to reach customers and viewers, social media is obviously an important way to drive traffic to content made for Youtube. And as this month’s cover story (see page 27) shows, the owners of large consumer brands are investing heavily in productions for online consumption.

Furthermore, as can be seen from Nestlé’s Nescafé campaign, there is an increasing convergence between mainstream TV campaigns and online, with the two mediums complementing each other.

One of the key characteristics of the use of social media platforms for TV is the need to develop and serve communities of people – for example fans of a certain programme, supporters of a sport or team, or people with similar interests and tastes. Crucially, social media – whether it’s Facebook, Twitter or Youtube – also give users a chance to have their say and to interact with the content they watch.

Lewis Wiltshire, director, media partnerships, Twitter, discusses how broadcasters can make best use of Twitter in more depth on page 50.

In a similar way, other internet-based services such as Skype have also moved into mainstream use by broadcasters eager to tap its ubiquity and ability to connect to a huge base of people. There is now a broad choice of technologies for broadcasters to deploy to formalise their use of Skype in a way that makes it ideal to broadcast purposes.

This theme arises in our special report on page 44 (see The beautiful game) where we see the power of services such as Skype to generate interactions that in themselves make for good viewing.

But on the flip side, as these platforms work their way ever deeper into the operations of broadcasters and the lives of viewers, so other issues also need to be looked at, such as potential legal implications. This is also a theme explored in this issue (see page 23) with legal expert Saarah Badr addressing the subject.

Have a great month ahead.

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