How Social Media Ruined TV Shows for ME

I hardly ever watch shows on the actual Television anymore. Between hating commercials and being busy when the shows are actual on, it is just easier to watch these shows the next day online. Most of these shows are posted on each channel’s website within a few hours. As long as you have a cable provider that is paired with this TV network then you can watch this show right away. Otherwise you may have to wait for a week if you want to watch these shows on their network site without a login. There are always those illegal sites that have the shows also immediately but also come with the risk of viruses.

 

With all of these options available to stream shows, it would seem like there is no downside to modern technology when it comes to television. However, social media can put a damper on this. I am not sure if it is just bad luck but there have been countless times that I have been told spoilers due to social media. This started happening when I had a twitter. Due to the trending part on twitter, if one went on during a big episode of a TV show, it was extremely easy to see what was happening. While this can seem great during big events like the Super Bowl, Grammys and other award shows, it is not so great when you want to be surprised by what will happen on your favorite show.

 

As social media has changed, this trend has seen to grow. For example Facebook now has the trending area on their site as well. This makes it so spoilers are easily shown on Facebook as well. These spoilers are not just in the trending area but friends seem to post statuses about what is occurring on TV shows. Celebrities who are in these shows will also live tweet, Instagram and snap updates during the shows. This makes it almost impossible to log onto social media without getting an update on what is occurring on certain TV episodes.

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I have tried avoiding social media altogether, and I still have had spoilers thrown my way. For example, I am a huge fan of Grey’s Anatomy. Regardless of if you watch Grey’s Anatomy or not, most people know that many of the characters end up being killed off during their time on the show. So while it is never a shock when someone dies, the surprise is still part of the show. Once I was waiting to watch an episode of Grey’s Anatomy until the next day and I had made sure to avoid social media, as I did not want any of the spoilers. When I logged on to the ABC website to watch the show, it told me the spoiler. This website was linked with their social media and thus it was unavoidable. ABC had linked their social media with their site for business purposes. It makes sense for these two entities to be linked. However, in this case social media actually made their business less powerful. By connecting these two sites, they actually made a lot of watchers mad as they were told what would happen. After this incident occurred, there were multiple articles about how upset fans were.

 

When I started looking into this issue, I realized I am not the only one who has had their favorite TV show spoiled due to social media. On Google, you can find multiple different blog posts and articles on “When is it Okay to Post Spoilers on Social Media”. There are also multiple apps that have been created in order to fix this problem. One of the most popular applications is called Spoiler Shield. This is an application that can be downloaded onto one’s phone to help limit the amount of spoilers that the viewer could potentially see. The free application currently works with Facebook and Twitter. When you log into the application, it allows you to pick from 50 TV shows, and different professional and college sports. When you select you show or shows, it then would not allow any commentary, statuses, or trending subjects to pop up on your news feed that has that TV show’s name in its title.

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On the application, the only option is either to allow these words to be on your newsfeed or to not allow. There is no way to put a time limit on the TV show spoiler being blocker, block statuses with character’s name or add TV shows that are not on the list. So while this application seems to be great, it does need some improvements. This still would not have fixed the issue I had with the ABC site spoiler. On top of that, the reviews on the app are not that positive. In fact the application only has 2.5 out of 5 stars. So this application may not be the most successful one, I still believe it is a good idea.   The bugs on this application may need to be fixed, but ev

7 comments

  1. mollyshields44 · ·

    I think you are very right that social media makes it hard to avoid public news, like a dramatic season finale of a show. Facebook and twitter especially are prone to constant updates which, in this scenario, does not work well for every person or situation. I think that the Spoiler Shield is a really interesting concept as it was most likely built out of an individual’s personal frustration. Here we see how what we love about social media, the constant and expansive updates, can sometimes have a negative affect on our daily lives. Despite that, I think most people would say that they still prefer social media’s consistent source of updates as it generally acts as an advantage.

  2. laurencondon23 · ·

    Really enjoyed reading this post. I have also run into this problem many times because I prefer to watch shows after they air to save time by skipping through commercials. The tradeoff with this, as you stated, is that often times I am aware of at least some of the events I am about to see before they occur. I think the spoiler shield is a very interesting concept and if improved could be an extremely successful app due to the increasing popularity of “unplugging”; opting for online subscriptions instead of traditional cable subscriptions.

  3. I’m glad you wrote this post. Until hearing about Spoiler Shield, I had just accepted the fact that I either have to watch a sporting event live, or not at all. Like you mentioned, I think with some refinement, Spoiler Shield has the potential to be great. I’m curious to see if the creators of Spoiler Shield can find a way to monetize their app, which would help them put more time and effort into its development. Maybe find a way for companies that benefit from consumers unplugging to integrate with the app, since it may improve customer experience for on demand services.

  4. alexisteixeiraa · ·

    Great post and great commentary, social media is super beneficially when getting real times news and alerts; however, it can also ruin tv show endings or spoilers. Just the same as it does for sporting events. I have found myself recording the Australian Open and because there is such a time change, the moment I log into Facebook, the winner is already trending. I should know better than to look at social media, but sometimes I even get news alerts about results. I wish there was some sort of filter feature! Thank yo for such a great post!

  5. I really enjoyed this post! I’m guilty of watching the Bachelor each week with my friends, and I have learned to avoid social media, especially Twitter, to prevent seeing spoilers. I could see from a media advertising standpoint that certain companies might want spoilers posted on social media in hopes that more people tune in live to watch on television. I had no idea apps like Spoiler Shield existed, and it seems like a smart way to address this problem. However, I still think the best way to prevent the problem is to avoid social media, even though that’s hard to do. When it comes to sports, I feel like most games are watched live, and I feel like popular sports games or championships are similar to news. So if you didn’t know the Pats won the Super Bowl, then you are not keeping up with the news and I feel like it’s acceptable to spoil it for you. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Nice post. I actually think that “spoilers” are actually desirable for the show itself. It means people can/ will watch in real time (making it easier to sell advertising), and that these spoilers serve as free marketing to the show. They want to spoil it for you so you have to watch it as its happening!

  7. viquezj · ·

    I completely agree with your point of view. As a soccer fan myself, I used to like recording games to watch them when I got back from classes, but now it has become pretty much impossible not to hear the final score. With so many websites giving updates and people sharing their opinions, there is no point at all to watch the repetition when you already know what is going to happen. In a sense, I think TV shows have become more popular now that more people are talking about them on social media, and people know that they have to watch them live if they want to keep up with those conversations.

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