14M Viewer Messages: How A Favorite TV Show In India Uses Data

Gigaom, Monday, August 13, 2012 3:03 PM
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The producers of the highly rated Indian show "Satyamev Jayate" process a mountain of consumer data: More than 1.2 billion people have connected with it across digital, social and mobile media, with over 8 million contributing  "more than 14 million responses to the show’s content via Facebook, web comments, text-message votes and a telephone hotline," writes Derrick Harris.

Harris explains how the producers have worked with an IT consultancy to automate its analysis of viewer data "to inspire ideas for future shows and to populate a weekly radio show." But what we found most interesting was how the data has helped inspire changes in India itself. Since the show is "a documentary program tackling some of the country’s most-sensitive topics," its viewer polls are a window into popular opinion that the producer sometimes presents to the Indian government. For example, after seeing viewer data on physicians who perform "female feticide, or the selective abortion of female fetuses," government officials agreed to change its court system to speed up the prosecution of such doctors, writes Harris, citing an interview with the producer. 

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