Great television makes us feel something, but it’s no longer enough to just let that emotion wash over us, like the wave of joy, horror, shock or melancholia that it is. Now, if for no other reason than because technology has made it possible, we are compelled to share our reaction to, say, the series finale of “Downton Abbey,” and to show the world exactly how our respective face crumbled when Matthew died in that car accident.
Or at least that’s what Freesat, the joint BBC/ITV UK subscription free satellite TV service, is counting on with the recent launch of its interactive TV reaction sharing platform, #dramaface. Optimized for mobile devices, #dramaface, according to Freesat, lets users “see what other people are feeling in response to the amazing TV available on Freesat and experience the emotional journey that a single episode of TV can take you on.”
That lofty goal manifests is an almost childishly basic website on which users can upload selfie reaction shots to Freesat programs. The uploaded shots furl downwards in an endless blanket of faces ranging from cheeky to shocked. Uploaders can tag their image with an emotion and assign it a show, and include a tweet-like comment to add a little context to their expression. Website visitors can then filter their selfie viewing experience by program, emotion or genre.
While the premise behind #dramaface couldn’t be simpler, it poses some intriguing promotional opportunities for Freesat. Already, the TV service has featured a special emotion option anchored to its Halloween programming (for which many users uploaded jack-o-lanterns, costumes and other creative selfie representations), and handed out a prize of a year’s supply of chocolate to the uploader with the scariest face. And future competitions will revolve around “Doctor Who,” “The X Factor” and Christmas-themed programming. One could also easily imagine some high-octane selfie sharing happening around the company’s free sports programming, including European football.
“We’re having lots of fun with this one,” Paul Gilshan, Freesat’s marketing and communications director, said in a statement. “The #dramaface selfies that have been coming in so far have been absolutely brilliant and it’s great to see so many telly lovers across the country getting involved.”
Image courtesy of Freesat.