BBC Three Relaunched with More Interactivity, UGC, Social Networking

The BBC recently relaunched its younger-skewing digichannel, BBC
Three, as a multiplatform service with programming that heavily
features interactivity, user-generated content and social-networking
components.
The channel, which according to its controller, Danny
Cohen, aims to "become Britain's ambitious multiplatform network,
combining television and the Web into a single, integrated offering,"
now simulcasts all its programming on the Internet; invites viewers to
upload clips of themselves introducing their favorite programs, the best
of which are featured during the channel's peak-time schedule; and,
according to its press materials, promises to produce original, online
content with "the passion and production values normally associated
with TV," and to place "innovative, interactive ideas at the heart of key
programs."

New, interactive shows on BBC Three include:

  • Lily Allen and Friends," a talk show which the BBC says is "based
    on the social-networking phenomenon that helped [the eponymous
    singer] launch her career," and whose studio audience consists entirely
    of people who have signed up as Allen's online friends on
    bbc.co.uk/lilyallen. The site also hosts exclusive content from Allen,
    which viewers can add to their own social-network profiles and Web
    sites, and invites viewers to help "shape the show" by contributing to
    discussions and posing questions to guests. --"The Wall," a weekly
    comedy series that features a Web site where viewers can post their
    own comedy sketches, ask celebrity guests questions, access exclusive
    video content, and, according to the BBC, "become part of the
    performance."
  • "Upstaged," which the BBC describes as a "multiplatform
    entertainment event open to anyone across the country who thinks they
    are worth watching." The show, whose Web site is based on KickApps'
    white-label social TV platform, invites members of the public who
    have aspirations to become entertainers to audition online to go to two
    specially built glass boxes (located in Bristol's Millennium Square"),
    where their performances are streamed online or filmed for broadcast
    on BBC Three. The show's online community then votes on the
    performances, and one of the boxed-in performers is replaced each day
    throughout the show's run. The first five weeks of the show's
    eight-week run were streamed exclusively on the Web, while the last
    three weeks were accompanied by programming on BBC Three.

According to the BBC, its revamp of BBC Three is paying off. One
month after the channel's February 12th relaunch, its share amongst
16-to-34 year-olds was 3.9%, representing a year-over-year
improvement of 44%; its weekly reach among that demographic was
4.5 million, representing a 33% year-over-year increase (note: the week
of the channel's relaunch saw it record its highest-ever weekly reach:
4.8 million/37.1%); and its overall reach was 14.1 million viewers,
representing a 27% year-over-year increase.