Yahoo! TV Beta Launches: Community around your TV

I’m carefully watching how the TV and Internet will merge into the next generation of something new. This isn’t it but it’s a start.

I had an interesting conversation with folks over lunch about how the old Media is being pushed over the new Social Media tools. A few meager benefits include time shifting, and place shifting were the differentiators. I commented that communities are still forming around these ‘one-way’ mediums like TV shows and Movies and Radio. Seems like Yahoo gets it with their launch of Yahoo TV, let’s see if people stick around.  Here’s what they launched:

“…Yahoo! TV, unveiled tonight, places a much bigger emphasis on community and letting you have your say about what’s worth getting addicted to. Bring on the social media!

There’s something so powerful about unleashing your inner Ebert and posting ratings and reviews for all to read. Yahoo! Local, Yahoo! Music, Yahoo! Movies, and similar products have all had tremendous success engaging their respective communities so thousands of people can weigh in on this movie or that song.

In the new Yahoo! TV, you’ll get a chance to rate any show or individual episode (new or in re-run) as well as write your own review. We’ve also teamed with Television Without Pity to integrate their fan forums for popular shows, so you can debate to your heart’s content which season of “Desperate Housewives” had the best hairstyles.

Seems like there’s a couple of features that will spur on interactive debates in this living breathing TV Guide:

  • Ability to watch shows (not sure of how many, or how often)
  • Members can rate shows using Yahoo! login.
  • Read expert reviews of professional critics
  • Members can write their own critic, and respond to others
  • Interactive TV guide
  • Supplemental show material: Behind the scenes, photos, whatever else.
  • I can think of quite a few other features to integrate, there’s a whole user generated portion that’s missing from this equation, the audience can do more than just type back.

If you read the comments on this page, it doesn’t seem like folks are too happy with this new service, including Dave Winer who thinks they broke it, ouch! Thanks Steve Wilhelm for this links.