A lot of the stories on the future of “social” TV focus on the idea of a real-time conversation happening online, with viewers sharing thoughts and jokes while taking in their favorite shows. But New York startup GetGlue, which hit the million user mark today, is seeing something a little different.
“The last thing you want is some variant on an old AOL chatroom, with tens of thousands of people talking about a program at the same time,” says GetGlue COO Fraser Kelton. “What we’re seeing is a burst of activity at the start of each program. The way we interpret that is, checking in to GetGlue has become part of the ritual of settling in to watch TV.”
As the network of users has grown, the amount of activity spilling over onto the big social services, Facebook and Twitter, has grown. “Users used to share about a quarter of their GetGlue check ins with these other sites, and that has grown in recent months to around 40 percent.”
GetGlue is now seeing an average of one check in per second and as much as ten per second during prime time. Along with the million user milestone, the service now claims 100 million data points, with 500,000 added per day. In the first quarter of 2011, GetGlue saw as many check ins as they did in all of 2010.
Over time this kind of information will become very valuable to advertisers and studios looking to learn about consumers viewing behavior. “There’s no question that the real-time conversations around TV shows on social networks — the virtual water cooler, if you will — enhance engagement and drive on-air ratings,” Lisa Hsia, a senior VP at Bravo Digital Media, recently told Mashable.