Must See Facebook?

For those who haven’t made it to Cannes this week, there’s a big conference there called MIPTV with a lot of focus on TV, social media and new ways to engage audiences.

One speaker was Facebook’s Christian Hernandez Gallardo, Head of International Business Development, and he spoke in particular about how Facebook Places can now be used as a ‘check in’ application for TV shows by highlighting time and place.

Facebook has huge traffic and does see lots of traffic spiking around shows.  But while Facebook Places may provide some functionality and facilitate some communication among friends, its focus as a broad platform may not offer the best user experience.  Show-specific companion apps for example may offer better experiences.

An important point he does raise around connecting with fans off-hours is certainly an area ripe for opportunity.  And the plethora of likes and interests that Facebook has on millions of users also may play into recommendations by either Facebook or others apps that can access such data.

“Where we wanna go with television is creating a social experience,” he said. “The thing I’m dying to make social is the EPG… I’m never gonna make it to channel 235, so how do I discover what I want to be entertained with. What if I could log in to a site, or my set-top box or my TV, and tell the system what I wanna be entertained with?” The idea: a system could use someone’s Facebook data to recommend shows to them.

It will be interesting to follow Facebook’s impact in the expanding social TV sector.