Are you ready for #hashtags on TV?

American television shows have begun adding permanent Twitter #hashtags on screen throughout their broadcast.

At the right hand corner at the bottom of the screen during a recent Bones episode, #bones was visible.

#glee was also broadcast throught an episode of Glee. Fringe and Christian Slater’s new comedy Breaking In also added hashtags. All of them are FOX shows.

FOX marketing president Joe Earley has toldĀ  TV Guide, “We’ve noticed shows like Glee and Idol trend while the show is on, but fans often use different hashtags.

“We thought if we provided the official hashtags, then more posts would aggregate.”

Social networking is increasingly being seen as a saviour to Free to Air television, by encouraging viewers to watch live and participate in mass discussions. How ironic given that online audiences have long been viewed as undermining Free to Air.

NBC is even launching NBC Live, a whole site devoted to promoting its shows via social media, while CBS justĀ  held its own “Tweet Week” devoted to its shows.

Most international editions of shows such as Glee and Bones are delivered “clutter free” to other markets, so it’s unlikely we’ll have to endure these hashtags, but as we know American trends are often picked up here at one point or another.

Watch this #hashtag space?


  1. Great, another outlet for those who think that there is a dire need for everyone in the world to know what they think about something.
    ‘#like omgz if i dont tell every1 i luv this show.rite now. north koreha mite start a war or sumfing lik dat”

  2. I agree with other comments about when to use them. Most people are clever enough to figure out #bones and #glee. Its ones like #drwho #doctorwho and #GNW #GoodNewsWeek that need clarifying. I remember there being an issue with junior master chef too, though I don’t recall the exact hash tags. #jnrmasterchef, #juniormasterchef and #jnrmstrchef I think were three that were being used.

    I personally don’t think its really necessary at all… its not that hard to figure out which is the popular hashtag for a show. But if it was to be done, like David said, I’d rather see it at the start of the show, or on the “back soon” screen. Or even as a “live twitter #bones” that appears on screen for 10 seconds after the ad break.

  3. How about they put this info in the programme description in the EPG? Then when you press the INFO button on your remote it’s there if you want/need it?

  4. I understand how we’d get different tags for shows with long titles but I really doubt people would get #bones and #glee wrong. Also, the hashtag watermark in the picture looks really intrusive.

  5. If they plan on having it on the screen the whole time I think it should at least go under the network logo and be fairly small. How often does anything really happen in that are anyway?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.