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The cast of Bravo’s ‘The People’s Couch’ discuss using social while watching TV on TV

The People's Couch - Season 1In October, we wrote about Bravo’s “The People’s Couch” a show that features different sets of families and friends as they watch TV’s most popular shows that air throughout the week as the audiences at home watch their reactions. The show is coming back next week with one hour episodes beginning on June 3rd from 10-11pm. In addition to being a TV show about watching TV a social TV community has emerged around the characters and the shows they’re watching creating the perfectly meta social TV mix. We interviewed the Zeno family and the guys on the show about social TV and being on the show.

Lost Remote: How has being on the show influenced your social media habits and how has it changed the way you watch television?
Zeno Family: It has changed our habits by having us on social media site more. Before the show, we only had Facebook and Instagram accounts. We didn’t have twitter and was very skeptical of getting it. Once we got on the show, we got twitter accounts, and now feel like we have been missing out on a lot. We love twitter and realize that Twitter is changing the game. The show has definitely changed the way we watch TV. We are now more open to watch shows that we might’ve not watched before or gave a second glance to.

LR: Do you find that your fans tweet you about that programming they are tuning into every week and have they also introduced you to shows that you were not aware of?
Zeno Family: Yes- Fans always tweet us about shows that they are watching. They love our reactions on the show and want us to watch the shows they watch because they want to see if we will have the same reactions as them.

LR: When you live tweet as the episodes air, do you find yourself answering questions on your comments you made on the show or in your living spaces?
Zeno Family: Yes all the time. Sometimes we have to elaborate on some of the things we say or do so that the fans can know the full reason why we said or did them.

LR: Has social media made watching television a more communal experience than before?
Zeno Family: Yes. Now We find ourselves giving commentary on shows on social media. It’s like we’re taping 24 hours a day 7 days a week. We want fans to feel like they can interact with us throughout the week about TV, not just on Tuesdays.

LR: What are your favorite social platforms and why?
Princella: My favorites are Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest . I Love being nosey on Facebook and Instagram seeing what my friends and followers have been up to. I also find great ideas and inspiration on Pinterest about the things I do day to day.

Lamont: My favorites are Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. I use Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as ways to promote the show and also catch up with long-time friends and family members.

Rashawn: My favorites are Twitter , Vine, YouTube, and Instagram. I Love how Twitter has so much influence, if enough people Tweet about one subject, it can change things. I also love watching, posting, and editing videos on Vine, Instagram and YouTube.

LR: What are you favorite TV shows?
Zeno Family: Our favorite shows are of course “The Peoples Couch,” “American Horror Story,” “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “Married to Medicine,” “Breaking Bad,” “Revenge,” “Watch What Happens Live,” “Boardwalk Empire,” “Game of Thrones,” “Love and Hip Hop” and “The Haves and Have Nots.”

LR: How has being on the show influenced your social media habits and how has it changed the way you watch television?
Emerson Collins: It has not changed the way I watch television, but it has made me far more interested in checking the Twitter reaction to shows I’m enjoying to see if others are responding the way I do. It’s created a fun community for me on Twitter with fans of the show as we discuss the live screening of our episode, along with our reactions to other shows during the week and I love that.

LR: Do you find that your fans tweet you about programming they are tuning into every week and have they also introduced you to shows that you were not aware of?
Collins: Absolutely, as fans of the show find us, they love to ask about shows we haven’t watched on “The People’s Couch” yet, and even more so, they suggest shows they love that they want us to cover so they can see our reactions to them. Everything we watch makes them want to know more, and we love that they are so engaged with our show that they want to know more!

LR: When you live tweet as the episodes air, do you find yourself answering questions on your comments you made on the show or in your living spaces?
Collins: The most common response we get during our live tweeting is a rousing chorus of “I thought that to!” It seems the strongest moments are when we reflect exactly what other people thought. Then there are always questions wanting to know even more of what we thought. We work to live tweet in reaction to what the show airs from us, and also provide additional commentary or the things we said.

LR: Has social media made watching television a more communal experience than before?
Collins: I absolutely think it has. The ability to instantly interact with other people who are watching what you are watching has moved it from a “next morning at the water cooler” discussion to a very in the moment thing. It allows us to see where we all agree on something, or how we differ, and discussions about the content. My favorite element is when television transcends plot to a greater social media discussion surrounding the themes and issues explored in the programming. The ability of television programming to provoke greater debate is facilitated greatly by modern social media.

LR: What are your favorite social platforms and why?
Collins: I use entirely too many, and use them in different ways. I love Twitter for its in-the-moment zeitgeist feeling and for my most inappropriate humor. Facebook allows for more in depth conversations with threads that can contain more complicated thoughts. And Instagram is the most fun for just the silly visual of what life looks like at a given moment. I would say if you follow all three, you get a pretty decent representation of me as a total person.

LR: What are you favorite TV shows?
Collins: This is impossible. I’m a TV junkie for a reason. Scripted – “The Newsroom,” “Game of Thrones”,” Scandal,” “Hannibal,” “Family Guy,” “The Vampire Diaries,”” Arrow (I’ll stop now…). Reality – “The Real Housewives of Everywhere” and “So You Think You Can Dance.”

LR: How has being on the show influenced your social media habits and how has it changed the way you watch television?
Blake McIver: Before “The People’s Couch,” I never would’ve thought to live tweet during a TV show. I thought it would be distracting but now I love it. There’s something about the immediate interactive nature of tweeting that adds a layer of excitement and intrigue. Kind of like watching TV with ten thousand of your closest friends.

LR: Do you find that your fans tweet you about that programming they are tuning into every week and have they also introduced you to shows that you were not aware of?
McIver: Absolutely. We get so many tweets and Facebook messages each week asking, “What did you guys think about…” or “I wish we could see your reaction to…”

LR: When you live tweet as the episodes air, do you find yourself answering questions on your comments you made on the show or on your living spaces?
McIver: It depends on the content of each episode. If we’ve said something particularly ridiculous or the slightest bit polarizing, we find ourselves answering for it on social media. I’ve spent a lot of time explaining my “I’ve just never been a Brad Pitt person” comment. Also, I’ve gotten many a tweet about people wanting to know where I get my shoes and I’m convinced that the twittersphere is completely obsessed with Scott’s socks, haha.

LR: What are your favorite social platforms and why?
McIver: Social media has definitely enhanced the interactive experience of TV watching. My current favorite social platform is Instagram. If a picture is worth 1,000 words and a tweet can only contain 140 characters… you do the math. Actually I’m a nerd so I did the math. There’s an average of 14.98 words per tweet so therefore it would take 66.75 tweets to amount to the 1,000 words we have culturally deemed as the worth of a picture.

The People's Couch - Season 1LR: What are you favorite TV shows?
McIver: My favorite shows are “Mad Men,” “Nashville,” “Scandal,” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” And my ultimate “not so guilty-pleasure” show is “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.” I’m really holding out for a “Branderpump” reconciliation next season.

LR: How has being on the show influenced your social media habits and how has it changed the way you watch television?
Scott Nevins: Social media is such an important part of “The People’s couch” and we love that when we live-twee that show, it feels like we are sitting on the couch with our followers and watching with them. It’s a pretty incredible experience to see their immediate reactions to our reactions. It proves just how similar so many of us are, even if we come from all different walks of life! I can’t say it’s changed the way I watch TV because I’ve always taken to social media when I thought something was funny or interesting while I was watching a show. I think it all goes back to that need that so many of us have to feel connected to someone or something.

LR: Do you find that your fans tweet you about that programming they are tuning into every week and have they also introduced you to shows that you were not aware of?
NevinsYes! I love it when the fans say “have you seen this new show…” and introduce me to something new. Sometimes the stuff they send my way is ever to crazy for me, but I always give everything a chance! A lot of fans of the show tweet directly to @ThePeoplesCouch on twitter and suggest shows we should watch – and we end up watching them! Bravo and the Producers really do listen to the fans and I think it makes the whole experience special and more interactive than any other show on TV right now.

LR: When you live tweet as the episodes air, do you find yourself answering questions on your comments you made on the show or in your living spaces?
Nevins: I find myself cringing at some of the stupid stuff that comes out of my mouth. I have no filter and so what you see and hear is what you get. When people tweet at me about something I’ve said I have to own it – it’s been a great lesson is sticking to your guns. Sometimes I’ll make a joke that people take too seriously but that’s also kind of fun too, because it can start at hilarious conversation. I think the fans really find a piece of themselves in each of the families/groups on the show and that’s why it works so well.

LR: Has social media made watching television a more communal experience than before?
Nevins: Absolutely! You can have one person sitting alone in Kansas sharing an experience with thousands of other people watching the same show all over the country at the same time, and they feel like they are in the same room. No one is ever really alone anymore…which I think it kind of wonderful. As someone who was sort of an outcast as a kid, I can appreciate how special that experience must be for certain folks and I think it’s great….as long as it all stays positive. Sometimes you see twitter fights and that makes me sad. Luckily I can say with 100% confidence that I have never seen one fight amongst “The People’s Couch” fans. It’s all love and positivity and support of this special time and experience we get to share with each other once a week.

LR: What are your favorite social platforms and why?
Nevins: For watching TV shows, I love twitter and the immediacy of it all. To see people reacting in real-time is fascinating. I love Facebook more for sharing news stories and having complete conversations (no limits on characters.)

LR: What are you favorite TV shows?
Nevins: My favorites range from “The Real Housewives” (Beverly Hills & New Jersey) all the way to stuff on The History Channel. In the middle of that mix is stuff like “Modern Family,” “Scandal,” “Shark Tank,” “Dance Moms,” What Would You Do?,” “American Horror Story,” any news program and of course, nightly re-runs of the greatest TV show ever written: “The Golden Girls!”

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