The Guardian looks at exactly how powerful Twitter is in determining the fate of TV shows:
“Producers watch Twitter as their shows are going out with some trepidation,” says Simon Nelson, a former controller of BBC Vision and now an adviser to a variety of media companies. “The influence of the twittersphere can disproportionately impact on a show, so if there is a torrent of abuse, or the other way around, a torrent of love, that shines a spotlight that is definitely a factor in commissioning meetings.”
While Twitter and Facebook are having an impact among those who make and commission programmes, social media is not thought to be changing the way that TV schedules are put together, at least not yet. But it is certainly true that within the world of entertainment programming tweeters and Facebook fans have found a new way to enrich their TV viewing, for instance, by commenting on the latest twist in EastEnders or who is their favourite contestant on The Apprentice. Tens of thousands of people use The Apprentice Predictor with a real-time graph that fluctuates as people register who they think is most likely to win. The X Factor also has a huge social media presence with 2.5m Facebook fans and an average of 250,000 tweets an episode. X Factor recently launched live auditions on Facebook and YouTube.