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Playing Along With ‘Project Runway’

projetrunway_klumgunnSocial television and casual gaming are having a moment. It makes sense: people like talking about television on social media and people really like playing games. Why not do both?

This fall Bravo’spioneering the social TV-gaming area with “The Singles Project,” a reality show that is an interactive game (and might get you a date), and just this week we wrote about an app to make a game out of watching NFL games.

Lifetime’s getting in on the fun, too, with “Project Runway.” Every Thursday, viewers are instructed to go to mylifetime.com to play along live. They prompt you to get ready, and then ask questions like “Is Fade About To Lose It?” (answer: yes), or “Is Emily’s Look Too Boring?” (maybe). projectrunwayscreenshot1

The catch? Once you’re there playing along whether you want to or not, you’ve entered the deep, deep world of “Project Runway.” Get the weekly newsletter, answer trivia about past seasons, shop the designer’s clothes, and tweet, tweet, tweet about your experience there.

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This Week’s Top 5 Viral TV Clips: Fall TV Preview Edition

5by_mobile_app_screenshot_304x200In this Friday’s installment of our partnership with 5by, the video discovery platform that curates the web’s best viral videos, we take a look at the top five videos of the week from the platform’s TV category.

Trending this week are clips from recently-returned or about-to-return shows including ‘The Walking Dead,’ ‘Homeland’,  and the cult favorite ‘Trailer Park Boys.’ For more on the videos selected, Theo Tabah, 5by’s Head of Content:

As summer comes to a close and school is back in session, the question “what show should I watch?” is more prevalent than ever. Fear not, 5by and the social scene have your back. Here are new shows you should be tuning in to, and what’s breaking ground across all social channels this month.
In the next three weeks, keep your eyes peeled for The Walking Dead, Tim and Eric, and Homeland. All set to make their season debuts between now and early October, the collective anticipation for the three shows has America on the edge of their seats. All very different in subject matter, but each incredible in their own respect. If you can’t stand the wait, Trailer Park Boys is the show to tune into now. In it’s 8th season, TPB has been released on Netflix for binge-watchers to indulge in. The gritty, Eastern Canadian mocumentary has now made it’s way into mainstream America and it’s picking up steam with the press. Recent appearances on Jimmy Kimmel and Mashable to promote their show has proven to be highly successful.
Across daytime television, Ellen is back and she wasted no time getting back into the viral video game. Almost instantly she released a video of herself transposed in Nicki Minaj’s ‘Anaconda’ video, and in only two days, it amassed over 3.5 million views. Ellen, we missed you. Needless to say, there’s lots to look forward too this fall.

Infographic: Who Was Tweeting About the U.S. Open This Year?

166969aThe U.S. Open concluded this week with the unstoppable Serena Williams winning on the women’s side and Marin Cilic with an improbably victory on the men’s side. Tennis fans had a lot to tweet throughout, but especially with all-timers Roger Federer and Novak Djokavic going down in the semifinals and good action throughout.

StatSocial, a company that allows brands, publishers, and agencies, to learn more about their Twitter following, crunched the numbers for the #USOpen and provided us with the below infographic. Some highlights followed by the full infographic:

- #USOpen has 170,000 unique tweet authors

- 91% of #USOpen tweets were from consumers and 9% were from brands (compare this to the VMAs, where 49% of tweeters were brands)

- 41.8% of tweeters were between 35 and 54 years old

- #USOpen tweeters are fans of The Economist, TIME, and The New Yorker, all of which tend to skew towards a more affluent crowd.

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Kerry Washington Dishes on Social Media, Sexism, and Living in ShondaLand

ShondaLand Brews panel (1)Buzzfeed Brews, the news outlet’s video series, featured a panel discussion last night with social television’s favorite (and maybe pioneering) stars: Ellen Pompeo of “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal’s” Kerry Washington, and Viola Davis of ABC’s new show, “How to Get Away With Murder.”

All three shows are written and produced by Shonda Rhimes, comprising what fans call “Shondaland Thursdays” or ABC’s “Shondaverse,” depending on their level of enthusiasm. The panel discussion, moderated by Buzzfeed’s Kate Arthur, focused on Rhime’s knack for creating strong female leads, diverse casts, and most importantly, social buzz.

Here are some highlights.

Ellen Pompeo praised a humble Kerry Washington for her role in gathering the “Gladiators” on social media: 

Kerry was so instrumental for making “Scandal” what it is, not to take anything away from Shonda, but it was really Kerry’s sort of political side that she pushed through. She made people watch it and made people pay attention. The whole Twitter thing — Kerry deserves a lot of credit for taking a leadership role in that.

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Does Whisper Have a Place in the Social TV Sphere?

whisperIn May, we wrote about how NBC, Universal Studios, and Hulu have begun to use the anonymous confession app Whisper for social integrations. Now – in what is maybe the most appropriate social TV program with the app – Season 5 of VH1‘s ‘Couples Therapy,’ which premiered last night, will team up with Whisper to ask their users about relationship issues they’ve experienced.

Dr. Jenn (the show’s host and lead therapist) will then take the top responses each week and give her advice in a companion web series that will run on VH1.com and on her Sirius Satellite Radio show. Throughout the season fan Whisper’s and Dr. Jenn’ videos will be featured throughout VH1 channels and even on air during episodes 6 through 10 of ‘Couples Therapy.’

More networks will likely turn to the rising social app – which skews heavily towards the teen demographic. Still, it is interesting to consider whether something anonymous has a place in the social TV sphere. For more on this, and why VH1 turned to Whisper for ‘Couples Therapy, we spoke with VP of Digital and Social Engagement for VH1, Tom Chirico:

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Armchair Quarterbacks, This App’s For You

Spit App Logo 304x200Today, just in time for NFL Thursdays, i.TV launched a new televised sports app, Spit. It’s a game for the game and doesn’t take umpteen hours to set up like a fantasy league.

Users download the app, invite friends, and then answer questions throughout the broadcast like, “will the next play be a run or a pass or an intercept?” The questions run on a ten second timer and there’s a leader board for your crew and for the entire Spit audience. Founder and i.Tv CEO Brad Pelo says:

What we discovered is that fans of sports tend to be a little bit more engaged around second screening, but there’s a great opportunity to get them to competitively engage. We built a feature last year for Nintendo, for their second screen experience and we watched , specifically for sports, the metrics just skyrocket. It became the second most used feature on the platform.

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Viacom Study: The 5 Steps to Series Fandom in the TV Everywhere Era

viacom-logo1Viacom today released the results of “Getting With the Program: TV’s Funnels, Paths and Hurdles,” a study the company conducted to explore how audiences discover, watch and become fans of TV shows.

The study, which surveyed more than 1,500 U.S. Viacom viewers ages 13-44, showed that people who use multiple devices to consume content prefer live TV and have stronger network loyalty than those watching shows on a single screen. 79% of the study participants say having more ways of accessing shows helps them try more programs and 78% wouldn’t have become fans of some shows if they couldn’t watch in multiple ways.

The most interesting part of the research is what Viacom calls the “Funnels to Fandom” – the process of becoming a fan, Viacom has found, takes place in five steps: Discovery, Research, Selection, Fandom, and Sharing. Read more

How ‘Sons of Anarchy’ Rules With Social Media

SOAanarchyaferwardLast night’s “Sons of Anarchy” premiere was trending last night, beating out “Big Brother” in Nielsen’s Twitter ratings. It’s not just that the final season promises to be the most excruciating yet. Fan interaction on social media is almost at “Scandal” levels.

This is how they kill it on social media, in two easy steps:

Showrunner Kurt Sutter is an active Twitter user and promoter. If you’re a fan and don’t interact with him, you’re missing out.

Taking a hint from “The Walking Dead,” FX is running #AnarchyAfterword live after the show, instead of just online. So fans can participate right after in asking questions and getting their fan fix on. On the show website, and via on-air prompts, they also advertise the week’s featured hashtags.

It doesn’t hurt that the show is packed with suspense and plot twists, making it easy to gush over on Twitter or TvTag. Can we start the #SaveJuice campaign, yet?

 

Netflix Is ‘Buffering’ All Day

battlefornetNo, your Netflix video won’t really be buffering all day, but they’re doing their best to make you think it is.

Visitors to the video streaming site, and others like Vimeo, Reddit, and Twitter are protesting the FCC’s net neutrality proposal with “Internet Slowdown” day. You won’t really have to wait for that episode of “Friday Night Lights” to load, but the spinning widget displayed on Netflix and other participating websites hits an emotional cord.

It’s hard to get people to pay attention to how and why we should defend net neutrality, but that buffering, spinny wheel is infuriating — even when it’s fake. Instead of technical jargon, the widget speaks plain English:

iinternet slowdown widget

You can take action and sign petitions here, but some are already calling the widget a wimpy move. If you really want the general population to care about protecting the fast lanes, we might have to actually slow the internet down to drive the point home. You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone, right?

 

How Clearleap is Making ‘TV Everywhere Both Possible and Profitable’

HP-Slider-1-nobarThere’s a good chance that if you’re a regular Lost Remote reader, you’ve used a Clearleap-powered product.

The Georgia-based company was founded in 2007, just as networks and cable providers began to make available to consumers TV Everywhere (TVE) and Video on Demand (VOD) options. Clearleap has helped HBO, Verizon, Time Warner, and Scripps deliver content via multiplatform solutions and have helped them monetize these solutions.

Last November, the company raised a $20 million round of funding to expand into the Latin American and European markets – both markets will prove to be extremely valuable to content creators and distributors in the next 10 years. When Netflix released its Q2 earnings report in July it announced that it will be launching in  Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg, and that its launch into these markets “with over 60 million broadband households will significantly increase our European presence and raise our current international addressable market to over 180 million broadband households, or 2x the number of current U.S. broadband households.” Like Netflix, Clearleap and its customers have a lot of territory to cover.

For more on Clearleap and its role in the proliferation of VOD and TVE, we spoke with CEO Braxton Jarratt. Read more

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