Last night’s debate was truly an interactive experience for all. Although I setup some guidelines to score the candidates, things quickly took on a life of their own as the group formerly known as the audience assigned their own scoring –and the #tweetdebate tag was used for a variety of observations. Current TV overlayed tweets live on their TV station (see these pics of Al Gore) which I found interesting at first –then extremely distracting as the letters floating near the chins of the candidates and I eventually switched back to CNN.
The Tweetdebate game morphed and evolved to something far bigger and greater than I intended, and although the graph above shows a real spike in activity, it’s truly organic in how it was used. I think for the next three debates we can continue to use the tag, but I won’t be doing anything as formal.
We should expect to see advanced sentiment monitoring tools by the next election that will track opinions, tone, and attitudes in real time from microblogging, social networks, and whatever comes next.
The bottom line? TV is no longer a lonely experience –anyone with a cell phone or internet connection can now participate and those that listen can benefit from learning, adapting, and in some cases, appeasing.
(…and yes, if you’re not from the United States, we’re an interesting culture)