Not one, but 2Screen

According to the website

We are watching more TV than at any time in the last five years.
That statistic is usually followed by ‘despite the rise of the Internet’. We’re in the opposite camp. We believe TV viewing is increasing because of the Internet. The social web turns TV into an event, a shared experience.
And as the social web becomes increasingly central to our lives, these events become more and more important. It becomes the nationwide, and sometimes worldwide water-cooler.
Where’s it all going? And what’s the next cool thing going to be?
Join us 14 October 2010 evening at Conway Hall.

So I did.

Before we start, this post might look quite long but it’s not. Not really anyway, there’s just a lot of pictures…
Let’s crack on.

Up first, Matt Locke, Head of Cross Platform for Channel 4. For this session I thought I’d crack open my Moleskine and give ‘mind-mapping’ a go. Something I’d seen Charlie Osmond do at SXSWi earlier this year, I’d been meaning to try it out for a while, so…

Start at ‘Television: Traditional’ in the middle of the left page and follow the arrows from there (click the image for larger size):

Presentation 1 Mindmap (aka Moleskine scribbles)

As per the right hand page, at 19:35 and 19:40 there were two slides which I loved (and subsequently uploaded). First, the web hits received by Channel 4 when their 2screen show ‘Seven Days‘ went live –

Traffic spike on Channel 4's website for Seven Days... Wow.

Err… WOW. No wonder the site went down on day one.

Second, the Google searches for ‘1066 Channel 4’ which was an online game that Ch4 ran during the showing of their 1066 drama broadcast in the summer earlier this year.

Searches for '1066 Channel 4'

The TX date is the peak at the top. The slide that I didn’t manage to grab was the one after, which showed how their online game carried on this peak long after the TX date. A great learning.

Matt spoke of attention shapes coming in different forms. Priyanka has a great write-up of these and I’d recommend taking a look at her words. The key takeaway for me was that, back in the day, our attention (as consumers) was organised by content creators –

‘It’s our TV show, we’ll broadcast it 7am. You need to be there to see it.’

Today, that is no longer the case and broadcasters are not only having to adjust their models accordingly, but also get over their fear of this changing consumption model.

Presentation two was from Margaret Roberstson, Director of Development at Hide & Seek. Just a couple of quotes from this one (which hopefully speak for themselves);

Twitter / @James Whatley: Much respect for harking b ...

Twitter / @James Whatley:

The irony of ‘focus’ resulting in two choice tweets is not lost on me.

Next up, my good friend Utku Can and his mate Tim Morgan. The former representing LivePitch, one of my favourite iPad apps to date and the latter, talking about Picklive; a way to bet on short amounts of football.

The mindmap for that session is below, start on the bottom page in the middle just above ‘RTRTG’ where it says ‘Picklive + LivePitch’ –

Talk 3 @ #2Screen mindmap - Picklive vs LivePitch

This one was a touch more difficult as there were two speakers, taking it turns to talk about two different products but around one theme (which changed every few minutes). Like before, at 20:15, there was a slide that I really liked and, as such, subsequently uploaded. Take a look –

Screens demand attention

I love this slide.

As mentioned, Utku is a friend of mine and often we talk about distraction vs attention and when he pulled up this slide, suddenly it all clicked.

The point of this slide is demonstrate that television is constantly demanding attention – whether you’re looking at it or not, the iPad on the other hand (with its built-in accelerometer) knows when it’s not being looked at so shouldn’t shout at you when it’s flat down and not moving for example. However when it is picked up or being moved/looked at, it should know that too and then start responding accordingly.

Utku later commented –

One other thing I had mentioned was we don’t necessarily need the devices to have accelerometers. A cruder way of achieving this would be ‘time since last interaction’: if you haven’t tapped or clicked anything in a while, we can scale back how much attention the second screen is demanding.

For the lack of a better phrase, I’m calling it ‘reactive interfaces’.


Finally, Kevin Slavin spoke at length, about crowds creating magic and how that drives us online ‘to 2screen’ with the larger community. Cinema viewings vs TV viewings, concerts vs radio… it adds up.

See 'Limbic Resonance'

It’s an odd sense of wonder, being aware that there are thousands, nay millions, of others sharing your experiences.

Limbic resonance, who knew?

At the end of it all, 2screen turned out to be one of my favourite events of recent years and – if you’re interested in the future of television, broadcast or consumer entertainment behaviour then I would definitely suggest reading up on 2screening right now; it’s already happening.

Be a part of it.

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Author: James Whatley

Chief Strategy Officer in adland. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x