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TV is dead. Long live TV.

2.09.2013 by Kevin Creighton

There's food for thought in this article on Twitter and TV:
Being a San Franciscan, I definitely watched the Super Bowl last week. And, yes, I'm feeling better, but it will still take some time to get back to feeling really good again. At least we still have the World Series champions. But I also had my phone with me the whole time. In fact, I was upstairs, checking on dinner when the most spectacular moment of all occurred: the lights went out in the Superdome.
It was spectacular because I found out what was happening from Twitter. Actually, I thought "lights out" referred to the Niners' secondary. It wasn't long until I realized, like the rest of the country (this is still the biggest shared TV moment in the U.S.), to tune away from the TV and toward social media. 
I'm not as bullish on the future of TV and Twitter: I think Facebook and streaming will continue to prosper, but I think that broadcast/cable/dish and Twitter will continue to exist for the same reasons that movie theaters and live concerts will continue to exist: They are shared social experiences that streaming media can't replicate. We're starting to see media break out into two broad groups, the immediate and the thoughtful.

Immediate media is things like concerts and "event TV" shows like season premieres, the Super Bowl and Dick Clark New Year's Eve show and awards shows: They must be watched at that moment to be enjoyed in full, and are best when shared with others who have the same interests. I've chatted with the stars of TV shows while watching those shows, and it really added to the experience. That's the magic of a shared, immediate experience, and that won't go away.

But there's also magic in more restful, complex activities. Catching up with old friends or reading a newspaper (online or not) is a contemplative experience that isn't as time-sensitive or shared as a rock concert or the NBA Finals. I'm in charge of when I read e-mail, Facebook and my blogroll, and I decide what's on my reading list for the day.

Both immediate media and thoughtful media are useful and needed: When an earthquake struck Ensenada, Mexico in 2010, the chandeliers in our house rocked back and forth, and my first thought was that California had suffered "the big one". I didn't turn to Facebook or a newspaper to find out what's going on, I went to Twitter and TV. Afterwards, once I found out what was going on, I went to Facebook. It's not a question of either Twitter or Facebook, it's both.

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