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How have websites affected TV viewing?

Static.jpgHere's an interesting question I received from a reader who is currently writing a paper for their course about how Internet sites that talk about TV shows and upcoming episodes affect peoples viewing choices. It's an interesting question, and if you think back to before you read film and TV sites to find out the latest news, how did your viewing of TV differ? Here's Jenny with her question...

I just wondered if you had any thoughts on how sites such as Digital Spy affect the way in which people consume TV? Do you think it is a good/bad thing that internet users can access information on particular episodes prior to the shows airing on TV? Do you think this puts people off from watching TV or do you think it encourages them to watch?

What do you think? I wrote a fair amount in response, which actually tended to focus on how the Studio's could use these sites to market the shows and retain an audience between series, not to mention the pure marketing potential. Yet how has it affected you? I find my take up of a series is dependant on reviews and comments from sites and people I trust, but it's never a hugely decisive factor, that will help swing my decision when I'm unsure.

However they definitely are guilty of lifting my expectation levels when it comes to the next series of Lost or 24. They are also extremely guilty of ruining plot twists and cliff hangers for me again and again. So what influence do they have over you? How has your viewing changed, or has it at all?



i think tv coverage discussed online has far less effect on viewing that discussion of films or listening to music - theres already a huge amount of press (in comparison to films) for TV, and theres enough TV of varying content within each country to satisfy tastes and people arent as tired of it as its a matured and naturally diverse medium by comparison (or at least it can satisfy more people with less variety) : same doesnt seem true for films. of course, this varies when you view TV as an extention of an interest in films, and you may also be more inclined to spend time online now than previously (some stats recently said TV is now a secondary time-consumer to browsing the internet in the UK) and certainly its the case that the internet weilds power in influencing peoples decisions because its a discussion network rather than a voice from on high for the most part, particularly in terms of forums. TV purchased and viewed online, as will become common in the next few years it seems (with recent pilot schemes and the popularity of itunes, the increasin speed of internet connections and the popularith of them) will drive a more global perspective on TV, movies and music even further than weve seen in the last decade (since DVD began), and i suspect that live broadcast across the internet will be like going to the cinema, switching on the radion or TV in a more comparable fashion to what we do so easily right now in our homes through individual devices but struggle with in terms of more technological reaching across the globe... something like that.

I dont own a tv so there.

The web is just another form of media, the plots have always been there to read ahead in TV listings magazines, and more recently the EPG too (Electronic Programme Guide for the un-digital). I'm never that obsessed, if a show goes off the boil I find out when I watch it, then stop. If something's doing well and I'm not watching I tend to find out via the oldest form of media - conversation.

What's putting me off now is the American formatting - title credits still appearing every few seconds well into the show.

The future of TV is on the Web, sooner or later. Personally, I watch less TV every day. Not only because it´s 90% shit, but the fact I can´t CHOOSE what I want to view.

That´s the great advantage of Internet Broadcasting. Personalized television. The possibilites are endless with a credit card, including movie releases at the same time they are done in the cinema. The whole industry of entertainment (cinema, music, TV) is dared to challenge because of Internet. And that´s good.

It seems books are not affected. Thanks God.

I only watch a handful of shows on a regular basis and tend to stay away from internet dicussions on them. I much rather read movie news and dicuss the ups and downs of cinema. For those who choose to look up spoilers, discuss and speculate I say, good for them, have fun!

Every fall I might read an article on what new shows are being introduced and select one or two to try out. I rarely jump on the bandwagon of a show because "everyone is talking about it". In fact, Lost is probably the only show I began watching because the word of mouth through my friends and co-workers was so good I couldn't help but check it out.

As for choosing other shows to watch a lot of it depends on if I like or know the actors cast. I'm always willing to give a show a try if I like the actors, but if the show is uninteresting or not funny, I stop watching.

I know what you mean Peter.

Where I come from (UK) you pay a monthly tv license (£14), AND for someone who will only use the telly to view DVDs or watch the news, I dont see the point of owning one if I can do it on my PC. What I am excitedly waiting for is the tv feature that my Internet provider will provide eventually - I hope the TV license people wont have to charge me anything for that! Or I'll just have to move... Barcelona, here I come! *winks*

TV in Barcelona sucks, Simone. I would pay gladly if I had BBC here, I assure you.


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