Twitter moves into real-time TV with Hawaii Five-0 test

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Twitter is set to test a real-time campaign which will allow users to determine the outcome of a television programme.

The microblogging service said that it would be working with CBS to allow users to vote on the culprit during an episode of mystery programme Hawaii Five-0.

Over the course of the programme, the network will ask users to take to Twitter and post one of three hashtags. The results will then be analysed and monitored by the network, with the winning "suspect" being presented as the killer.

"The #H50 team will spend the episode investigating the mysterious death of a professor, with the TA, the student, and the boss all prime suspects. As the drama unfolds on screen, viewers will see a prompt to vote for the culprit by tweeting #theTA, #TheStudent or #TheBoss," Twitter explained in a blog post.

"Behind the scenes, the Hawaii Five-0 production team will be tallying the votes immediately, and will put the most popular selection on air to end the show."

Twitter has increasingly become involved in real-time television coverage as music, sports and news programmes have allowed users to submits their tweets to on-screen tickers.

Similarly, television studios have run campaigns which allow users to determine the outcome of story lines (the Simpsons, for example, allowed a text contest to determine the fate of the 'Nedna' romance.)

This is however, as Twitter points out, the first time a scripted, prime time programme has allowed for a real-time vote. Should it prove successful, we could be in for some entirely new formats of television programmes down the road.

12 Jan 2013

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