Twitter is positioning its business to a significant extent around the user engagement it drives around so-called tentpole events like the Olympics and the presidential debates, as well as regularly programmed shows. So what does the company's newly anointed head of TV do, exactly?
A veteran TV executive, producer and writer with MTV, VH1, NBC and the Travel Channel on his resume, among other networks, Fred Graver joined Twitter in June and characterized his job as developing the platform as a live-TV companion, a new TV Guide and a new TV rating mechanism at Ad Age's Social Engagement/Social TV conference yesterday. He also acknowledged that part of the job is communicating with talent and urging them to use Twitter to communicate with fans.
"The dirty secret in TV is that one day you're going to get canceled, so get your million followers before then," said Mr. Graver. He noted that Neil Patrick Harris had live-tweeted the recent season premiere of "How I Met Your Mother," and that 25 Emmy nominees had tweeted on the day of the awards last month, including actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, from her dress fitting.
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