NPR Pushes twitter/TV Synergy

Family watching television, c. 1958Image via WikipediaEarlier in the month I wrote "How to Save Broadcast TV", an idea I had where twitter could be used to reconnect viewers to the real-time aspects of TV viewing. While I was opining on the loss of a shared viewing experience, this real-time aspect is also important to the broadcasters and cable channels because it helps them get more revenue from advertising.

Yesterday I heard a similar article on NPR. Melissa Block interviewed Andrew Wallenstein, a television editor at Variety, who commented on how the stars of the shows are also twittering to connect with the viewers.

Mr. BOURDAIN: When served it's usually with a fresh, crunchy cabbage slaw so popular around here, and it hits like a (BLEEP) brick, let me tell you.
WALLENSTEIN: But while he gets bleeped on TV, you get the full flavor of Bourdain on Twitter, which is great if you like your TV chefs a little saltier.
Though Bourdain and the others may be live-Tweeting because they enjoy it, this is about marketing, too. More and more, people aren't watching TV shows when they're first on. They can watch on Hulu, iTunes or their own DVRs.
But the networks want to pull people back to the original airdate because that's where they charge most for commercials. And how's that for irony? With a little help from Twitter, good old-fashioned TV can hold its own.

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