The first network TV show based on a Twitter account has been cut due to struggling ratings. CBS has canceled $#*! My Dad Says, the comedy based on Justin Halpern’s popular Twitter account @shitmydadsays.
“The cancellation of $#*! is a win for creativity,” argues TV.com’s Tim Surette. “CBS was eager to cash in on the Twitter feed, but never quite found a groove for the show other than ‘William Shatner plays a cranky man.’ Hopefully the show’s failure will keep others from trying to make shows based on blogs, Twitter feeds, tumblr pages, match.com profiles, email addresses, and Friendster pages.”
I have the opposite perspective: why wouldn’t programmers tap the endless creativity of millions of self-publishers on the web? The crowd is always more creative, and Twitter and Tumblr and other micro-publishing platforms are a great source of ideas. The key is to expand the show beyond its online genesis to make compelling, sustainable television.
Meanwhile, we haven’t heard any updates on three other Twitter-based shows CBS is exploring. What do you think? Is basing shows on Twitter overkill? Or great source of ideas?
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