David Bauder

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - TELEVISION -

US pres­i­den­tial de­bates this au­tumn was watched more closely than per­haps ever be­fore, be­cause peo­ple were in­stantly tak­ing on Twit­ter to pro­vide their own cri­tiques.

It also makes for some con­flict­ing in­for­ma­tion: Twit­ter buzzed with com­plaints last sum­mer about US broad­caster NBC’s pol­icy of air­ing many Olympics events from Lon­don on tape de­lay in the US, yet rat­ings for the prime time Olympics tele­cast soared.

The in­crease in peo­ple watch­ing tele­vi­sion and com­ment­ing about it on­line would seem to run counter to an­other big trend this au­tumn: more peo­ple record­ing pro­grams and watch­ing them later. Those con­trary trends both in­crease the value of live event pro­gram­ming such as awards shows or sport­ing events.

The Nielsen study also found 35 per cent of peo­ple who used tablets while watch­ing TV looked up in­for­ma­tion on­line about the pro­gram they were watch­ing. A quar­ter of tablet own­ers said they re­searched coupons or deals for prod­ucts they saw ad­ver­tised on tele­vi­sion.

As rapid as the use of so­cial me­dia while on tele­vi­sion is grow­ing in the US, it al­ready lags be­hind other coun­tries. Nielsen said that 63 per cent of peo­ple in the Mid­dle East or Africa report us­ing so­cial me­dia while on TV, and 52 per cent of peo­ple in Latin Amer­ica.

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