NBC’s ‘Today,’ Discovery’s ‘Street Outlaws’ Integrated With Facebook Via Media APIs, Spredfast


NBCTodayOrangeRoom650Two more television shows are now more tightly integrated with Facebook, as social relationship platform provider Spredfast used two of the media application-programming interfaces the social network introduced at its F8 global developer conference in April for NBC’s “Today” and Discovery Channel’s “’Street Outlaws.”

Facebook’s Trending API made its debut on “Today” Tuesday morning, powering an interactive trending feed in the morning news show’s “Orange Room” on-air digital studio, which is hosted by Carson Daly.

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And Monday night’s installment of street-racing show “Street Outlaws” debuted the social network’s Hashtag Counter API, which allowed viewers to vote for the team they thought would win the race on Facebook, using hashtags.

Discovery said in a blog post:

Fans can get in on all the fast and furious action tonight, as live Facebook polling results to on-air questions will be featured throughout the episode, in addition to real-time Facebook posts. In a primetime TV first, viewers can post their answers anywhere within Facebook to vote. Tonight’s question will be: Who do you want to top the list this season? Post #SOBigChief or #SOMurderNova to vote.

Spredfast also offered more details on its use of the two Facebook media APIs for the two shows in its own blog post:

The age of social TV has arrived, but now it’s becoming more advanced and, for Discovery and NBC, more integrated. With the release of Facebook’s new media APIs in April, these networks are better equipped to deliver interesting and relevant real-time conversations. As a new partner in Facebook’s Public Content Solutions program, Spredfast is working alongside Facebook to power compelling broadcast integrations that help connect viewers to the content they’re seeing on-air.

Starting this week, “Today” won’t just be talking about news from the past 24 hours — it will have access to the top trends from the past 24 seconds. “Today’s” Orange Room will feature trending topics live on an interactive touch-screen, powered by real-time data from Facebook.

News anchor Carson Daly will be able to swipe through posts on the trending feed to show audiences what people across the country are talking about, and can then tap through a topic to find related Facebook content. From updates on top sporting events like the World Cup, to breaking news, to exciting celebrity stories, “Today” will always be ready to fill you in on the latest.

Staying true to its name, Discovery Channel sought to uncover new ways to engage with an enthusiastic fan base for the third season of “Street Outlaws,” a fast and furious look inside Oklahoma City’s street-racing scene. To keep its show up to speed with the cars and their fans, Discovery is using Facebook to power a weekly live vote, allowing viewers to share support for their top picks. Throughout the show, fans will be prompted to vote exclusively on Facebook for their favorite team using custom hashtags. Real-time results will be unveiled on-air so that viewers can see how their picks stack up to the competition.

Exciting new TV shows are constantly cropping up, while old favorites are extending their runs, and Facebook will continue to find new ways to help media companies tell rich and compelling stories that draw viewers into programming. On the viewers’ side, we’re looking at a whole new avenue for engagement, where audiences can watch the news or cheer on their favorite characters with intensified, personal control. Facebook is a space where people from all over the world gather every day to share their thoughts and participate in real-time conversations. Now that the consumer voice is getting louder, media companies can capture these stories to share back with TV audiences who are watching and listening.

Readers: Would you like to see more Facebook integration with your favorite TV shows?