Doctor Who: The Simulcast Spoiler Dilemma

Capaldi_ITD
I got up early to watch “Into The Dalek” this morning… and a whole new spoiler problem I hadn’t previously thought of popped up.

Into The Dalek was enjoyable… and that’s about all I’m going to say here about it, because it struck me as I was watching that there was a problem with drama simulcasts that I hadn’t really thought about before.

I noted in the latest episode of Vertical Hold that I was looking forward to the simulcasts, because for the first time ever I could watch Doctor Who at the exact same time it was airing on the BBC for the entire season.

Sleep deprivation notwithstanding, that’s still true. I even got to discuss it with a few likeminded folks… but then I stopped.

A while back, I wrote a guide to online conduct as it relates to spoilers. I don’t like spoilers much, and I don’t get the mindset that gleefully spoils entertainment content for others, so I’m sensitive to not wanting to be “that guy”.

The issue in the Internet age is that it’s reasonable to want to discuss things with like minded folk online across social media, but conversations that way tend to spread wide. Not everyone can watch everything live, so a little reasonable tolerance is no bad thing.

In my social media spoilers post, I came up with the following:

TV Shows: 4 hours after Australian broadcast, except for live events. Iā€™m not into sport, but I can very much see that screaming along virtually with the crowd is part of the fun, and live events lose currency much more quickly than those that are pre-recorded.

The thing with Doctor Who simulcasts that I hadn’t entirely considered is that this meant that I could (technically) have started talking about it online freely from 8:30am, while some folks would still be having breakfast and watching it on PVRs or iView.

I’ve previously noted that the spoiler limitation shouldn’t apply to live sport, where results are often analysed within seconds of a match finishing. But “live” drama broadcasts in the middle of the night? That’s new territory, and one that I’m not sure I know how to fix. Anyone got any thoughts on how to handle that?

Image: BBC

1 thought on “Doctor Who: The Simulcast Spoiler Dilemma”

  1. My feeling is that people who choose not to watch it at the first opportunity ā€” who choose the delayed or time-shifted options ā€” are also choosing to be exposed to spoilers. If they wish to avoid spoilers, the onus is on them to avoid social media, where all the sleepless nuts are sharing their collective experience.

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