Users of the Twitter microblogging platform in Costa Rica have been tuning in to the local version of the television program “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?” since it started airing a couple of weeks ago. With the tag #qqsm (¿Quién quiere ser Millonario?), they have been microblogging about the program, chatting and discussing the questions and even seeking answers to the questions that stump them.
This new initiative has even attracted participation from users of Twitter outside of Costa Rica. Tune in to the programming [es] via web (Tuesdays 8pm Standard Time -0600 UTC), and use the hash tag #qqsm to follow the conversations through twitter.
A mashup site [es] also provides the opportunity to watch the programming via Ustream and follow the Twitter conversation with a widget called Tweetgrid.
On today's one hour long program, 1763 updates had the #qqsm tag, both from twitters within Costa Rica and those living in other countries who joined through streaming video. The Twitters Costa Rica site [es] posted:
El nuevo record de tweets durante el programa Quien Quiere Ser Millonario que transmite Canal 7 los martes a las 8pm es de 1763 tweets.
And there is an image to prove it!
So what were they all tweeting about? Besides speedily writing the answers to the questions, searching the hard ones and complaining about trick questions, some poked fun at the show's host, Ignacio Santos, who has impressed viewers by his orange skin tone due to tanning and ultra white teeth. During commercial breaks, an impromptu “worst commercial” contest began, with runners up being an upset stomach fizzy medication tablets, and an international fried chicken restaurant chain. Gorileo wrote at the end of the show:
¿Qué vamos a hacer ahora? A) Seguir Twitteando B)Firmar una petición para alargar #qqsm C) Pedirle el bronceador a Nacho D) ¡Ir a KFC!
Political issues also reared their head, particularly reactions to the recent events [en] regarding the Minister of Housing Clara Zomer, who was lately implicated in an accusation of government funds misuse, when she accepted a lunch invitation from Ennio Rodriguez, head of the Banhvi, a bank which provides loans for home construction, to discuss the housing needs for Earthquake relief for the many families who lost their homes after the January 8th earthquake. This lunch invitation, in the current environment of recession and national emergency, ended up costing more than 600 USD for a party of 6, and Rodriguez paid with government funds. The lunch at the high end restaurant named Cerrutti included white truffles, expensive champagne, and other delicacies.
Arturo Garro made up his own question:
la ministra Clara pidio?: Agua, Vino, Champan, Champu
To a question asked on the show about the Magical Phrase used by Ali Baba in 1001 Nights to open the door to the cave, MujerMaravilla quipped:
Yo la se…. la respuesta es “Vamos a Cerrutti” asi se abria y salian los 40 Ladrones
LizRincón summed up her perception of twitter users who watch Who Wants to be a Millionaire:
perfil de twittero: ve cable, no sabe de fut, ni sabe q la Pension es un programa y no un motelucho por horas :P
Details on how this activity will continue to develop are still in the works. Luigi, the twitterer responsible for creating the site with the video feed and twittergrid application, told the author that this idea was born out of the organic way in which people began tweeting about the show, and how enjoyable it was for the past two weeks. Adding a live feed enabled the people using twitter from outside Costa Rica to join in and participate.
There are discussions currently to see if the activity will rather move on to a chat platform, since the barrage of updates with the #qqsm tags could get overwhelming for anyone not following the show.