Channel 5 pioneers Facebook voting for Big Brother

Channel 5 is to use Facebook as a voting platform for reality show Big Brother for the first time.

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The broadcaster is working with show producer Endemol, Facebook and mobile agency Mobile Interactive Group to develop a Facebook app that lets viewers vote for the contestants they want to leave the Big Brother house, using the social network’s Credits payment system.

Viewers can purchase votes using Facebook Credits to use on either their laptops or smartphones. Channel 5, which bought the rights to broadcast Big Brother after ten years at Channel 4, is yet to determine pricing.

Channel 5 digital director James Tatam told new media age that Facebook voting represents only part of the overall social media and digital strategy for the show, which will include video footage on the show’s Facebook page, along with real-time news and video updates.

Previously it had mooted providing live 24-hour streaming via its website, but Tatam said it has shelved this idea in favour of a constant stream of video highlights, which will be available on both the main website and Facebook.

“We want a lot of the content to be on Facebook. Putting real-time news and video updates alongside the ability to vote should be really powerful,” he said.

Facebook won’t be the only voting mechanism, according to Tatam, but will be one of several on devices yet to be confirmed. It’s also in talks with YouTube to extend the use of the platform beyond video content for Big Brother. It has also launched its first Big Brother Twitter feed.

This story first appeared on New Media Age. For more digital stories and analysis from NMA click here now

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