Talking with TV shows: Simultaneous conversations between users and producers in the second-screen television production Voice

Ditte Laursen, Kjetil Sandvik
2014 Northern Lights: Film & Media Studies Yearbook  
User interaction with radio and television programmes is not a new thing. However, with new cross-media production concepts such as X Factor and Voice, this is changing dramatically. The second-screen logic of these productions encourages viewers, along with TV's traditional one-way communication mode, to communicate on interactive (dialogue-enabling) devices such as laptops, smartphones and tablets. Using the TV show Voice as our example, this article shows how the technological and
more » ... set-up of the production invites viewers to engage in new ways of interaction and communication. More specifically, the article demonstrates how online comments posted on the day of Voice's 2012 season finale can be grouped into four basic action types: (1) Invitation to consume content, (2) Request for participation, (3) Request for collaboration and (4) Online commenting. These action types express on the one hand the way in which Voice addresses its audience (i.e. through traditional one-way, one-to-many communication) and on the other hand the ways in which viewers respond by participating and collaborating (i.e, through two-way, oneto-one, one-to-many and many-to-many communication). social media call-in programme format, this interplay between a TV show and its users' activities has always been somewhat asynchronous, thus rendering the dialogue not more than a quasi-conversation. Lately, though, with audiences' growing tendency to use a second screen while watching television (nielsenwire 2011, 2012), more and more content providers in the broadcasting industry have adapted the cross-media formula into productions with a live interplay between web and television in synchronous time. Here the aim is to increase attention and involvement and to enable a communication flow between the production and its audience characterized by the simultaneity found in interpersonal communication. Second screen refers to an additional medium (e.g. tablet or smartphone) that allows a television audience to interact with the content they are consuming, such as TV shows. The second screen is not just another screen (as the first screen: the TV screen): it is a digital communication device that can be interacted with. The two signifying features that characterize the communicational structure in a second-screen productionthe way we define it in this articleare synchronicity (co-presence of media facilitating the communication) and simultaneity (co-presence of parties participating in the communication): the user engages in watching live TV shows and takes part in live chats, in posting Facebook updates, tweeting and so on, thus in talking both with the TV show (including its participants) as it airs and with other users that watch the same show at the same time. Both the producers and the users are thus engaging in simultaneous acts of communication. Based on an analysis of the second-screen production of Voice (2012), we will show that the new media talk found here represents a blend of the para-social (Horton and Wohl 1956), interactions of broadcast talk (Scannell 1991) and interpersonal communication (cf. Jensen 2010). By using an analytical framework based on mediated one-to-one, one-to-many and many-to-many communication flows in general and how these occur in cross-media and second-screen settings in particular combined with elements of conversational analysis, we try to outline in a detailed way
doi:10.1386/nl.12.1.141_1 fatcat:ru655gejsfckbo5txu2o7mufoy