Canada’s Shaw Media has inked an exclusive, short-term agreement with Time Warner-backed social TV check-in service GetGlue.
The tie-up will let viewers compare notes with each other on homegrown titles including Top Chef Canada, Lost Girl and the upcoming Real Housewives of Vancouver.
The shows belong to Shaw-owned specialties including HGTV Canada, Showcase and Slice. The alliance comes into play today. Shaw has an exclusive deal with GetGlue until the start of the fall season, according to head of online content Chris Harris.
It is the first large-scale roll-out of the service in Canada following a test run last year with national pubcaster CBC and its Hockey Night in Canada.
Canucks have been slow to embrace social TV relative to territories such as the US and the UK, where GetGlue is linked to more than 75 channels, said Harris.
“We looked at the US and the UK and at the online conversations around TV and shows and talent and it was a little more mature than what we have in Canada,” he said. “But why is that? We have great shows. The audiences are smaller but just as passionate.”
GetGlue, which combines a website and mobile app, is a handy way for Shaw to promote its homemade shows and lessen the effect of DVRs on its advertiser revenue, Harris added.
The company has recently been more aggressive with second-screen add-ons to its TV programming and recently unveiled its own complementary app for viewers to use while watching Survivor.
“It may not be the intended purpose but it is helping drive people to the first viewings and to the linear area, for sure,” said Harris. “Watching Survivor at 8 o’clock is that much more compelling when there’re more people participating.”
Shaw also owns the Global TV conventional network though its line-up of mostly US-made shows will not marry up as well with GetGlue. The way the system works, comments on US shows will be linked to the US networks said Harris.