Recently MintDigital launched BloomBox “a web application that makes it easy for television producers and broadcasters to make shows based around user-generated content.” A couple of weeks ago MintDigital soft-launched Islandoo, the first BloomBox-powered website that lets you apply, via the web, for Channel 4’s hit reality show Shipwrecked, which airs on BBC America and Channel 4.
Islandoo was created simply because at the end of Shipwrecked 2006, when Channel4 (RDF) asked for applications for Shipwrecked 2007, they immediately received more than 50,000 responses. Unsurprisingly the Shipwrecked production team were overwhelmed, even with six researchers, it was impossible to give each application the attention it deserved. So with the help of MintDigital, they set about utilising the latest Web 2.0 social networking techniques to help them filter the best applicants i.e by getting people to vote to see who the community thought should go forward for an audition.
“Islandoo is the first social networking website of its kind. The fact this community has a clear objective leads to a massive change in behaviour from other social networking sites. Users need to make friends in order to go through to the auditions. Therefore anyone who joins Islandoo gets bombarded with friendliness. ” said Andy Bell UK MD of Mint Digital
In less than 20 days, Islandoo has already signed up over 10,000th users. They are on track to generate over 10 million page views in the first month alone! This amazing statistic is not surprising given the fact that while I have been writing this post, Sneedy69 who signed up just 8 minutes ago has already received 20 fans and 30 comments.
He are just some of the feedback comments from other people who have recently signed up to Islandoo.
“I’m literally just doing this and making a cup of tea roughly every 45 minutes… MySpace has already got me by the balls and now this!”
“You’ve just created a profile and you think you have just signed up for a normal site. And then it hits you…”
“This site it more addictive than crack!”
I think Islandoo is a great example of how the Web and TV are getting closer together and this is just the first of several sites that Bloombox will power. Other examples of how the Web and TV experience is blurring include BBC3i which recently used the web to premier mainstream BBC TV programs and in turn used the web to (re)broadcast mainstream TV programs. Then there is the recent Fox TV broadcasts via MySpace.
Very shortly, here in the UK, we will see BT Vision turn the entire medium into one integrated (IPTV) platform like HomeChoice, thus further blurring the lines and changing the relationship between the Web and TV. i.e in the future we may ask what comes first the TV or the web?
And of course it doesn’t end there. Looking to disrupt this WebTV medium one stage further are Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom (Kazaa & Skype founders) whose peer to peer video streaming service (the Venice Project) will enable the distribution of high quality full screen TV across the net much like RawFlow does today.