Cable Technology Feature Article
Facebook Adding More Data in Attempt to Woo TV Networks
By Tammy Marie Rose, TMCnet Contributing Writer
Facebook (News - Alert) has come up with a new strategic plan it hopes will help it dominate online conversations around television. This is just another step in the constant battle with Twitter (News - Alert) for broadcasting dominance.
Facebook announced that it will begin sending out weekly reports to America’s four largest television networks. These reports will give broadcasters a general idea of how much talk their shows generate on the social network. The reports will include how many likes, comments, or shares a television episode created on Facebook. It will also detail how many Facebook members participated in the action.
These reports will not be available to the general public, but instead will be shared only with ABC, NBC, Fox and CBS, as well as a small number of select partners.
For years now, Facebook and Twitter have been in a heated battle over broadcasting dominance. Being the king of real-time events means more user activity and more advertising dollars.
Both companies have tried, over the past few months, to boost their relationships with television networks and highlight data reports on user activity during television events.
Twitter is expected to begin distributing a public offering the “Nielsen Twitter TV Rating.” It is a first measurement report in partnership with media measurement giant Nielsen. This new report will measure how many people participated in a conversation about a particular show, and how many people read those tweets.
Earlier this month, Facebook unveiled a new program that allows select media partners to tap into its public feed and see activity related to certain keywords. Facebook's new data report will add up all posts, including private ones. Facebook ensures users that the data is collected anonymously and will only be shown in aggregate to protect users’ privacy.
This new report’s range is limited, however. For instance, if it is showing data on the popular television show "The Walking Dead," it will show that it generated more than say two million interactions from 800, 000 people.
In order for Facebook to correctly calculate chatter they had to create a library of keywords for each show. The team monitoring chatter for the report uses this library to make sure that a comment that seems related to a particular show isn’t about a different topic.
Daniel Slotwiner, head of Facebook's measurement team, says, “The conversation is being generated by a group that is much more representative of the general population – that means we should have a better signal as it relates to ratings.”
Facebook says that they hope to include more data over time.
Edited by Alisen Downey