Dan and Dusty – an Unlikely Example of TV Interactivity

Dan and Dusty is ITV1’s latest occupant for the post-pub Friday night slot – thirteen weeks of bands, interviews and stand up designed to appeal to young drunk people. This time however, ITV have fronted the show with two puppets rather than the usual talentless presenter. I suppose they’re cheaper and the headlines in 3AM Girls will be less embarrassing.

Anyway, what has this got to do with convergence? That’s right – ITV have realised that young, drunk people who like music and comedy also like mobile phones … and mobile phones equal money.

Viewers can interact with the programme with their mobile phone in a number of ways. They can send text messages to the show’s agony aunt for live advice on “In Confidence”, and enter competitions for prizes. It should come as no surprise to Digital Lifestyles readers that there are wallpapers and ringtones to download as well.

The mobile service is provided by Mobileway and Watertrace. Bernadette Lyons, the managing director Mobileway UK, said: “By providing mobile services to a show that looks set to have all the qualities of a cult success, Watertrace and Mobileway are helping ITV create a truly interactive proposition for viewers.”MobileWay

Dan and Dusty

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?