Twitter may have made much of the early running in the mobile presence stream space, but upcoming rival Jaiku has inked a deal with Finland’s third largest commercial TV station to tie in with this weekend’s Eurovision song contest.
Markku Järvinen, a comedian on Subtv’s morning show, will use the mobile/web platform to offer commentary throughout the annual televised pan-European singing competition on Saturday night. Järvinen has already been updating his Jaiku stream, The Markku Channel, in the lead-up to the typically camp event, extending the show brand to new territory. Jaiku is also providing a Eurovision Backchannel for multitasking television viewers to participate in group mobile chats during the live three-hour show.
Subtv director of programming Maaretta Tukiainen said the channel was “inventing new ways for our viewers to connect and communicate with each other”, while Jaiku co-founder Jyri Engeström said the synergy could “captivate and involve global audiences”. (Release). Helsinki-based Jaiku, a startup formed by former Nokia developers, allows users to share their presence and activities using a cell phone application, the web and – to a lesser extent than Twitter – SMS. Although many Twitter hackers have manipulated that platform’s API to make unofficial mobile alert services using content from the likes of CNN and BBC News, Jaiku’s tie-up with Subtv is believed to be an uniquely deliberate attempt to court media.