Friday, August 7, 2009

Chuck Me Mondays

WARNING: Reading the whole thing is important, but reading the last half is most important. :)

I have been meaning to detail for people how Chuck Me Mondays came about and why I thought it was important and how I think it will best work. I think some people are not sure of the overall intent, though I have explained it on both ChuckTV, Twitter, and The problem is that forums are moderated and controlled by other people and Twitter has a character limit, so I can't really express myself completely (and some people thank the gods for that).

First, as I detailed in a Chuck You Tuesday podcast episode (see sidebar) a fellow Skype user and ChuckTV forum poster named Richard had the idea to watch all of seasons 1 and 2 of Chuck while waiting for season 3. I took that idea and expanded it to include the entire Chuck fan base. But that was only the beginning. I had been studying trending topics on Twitter and realized a few hundred people could trend a specific topic. I suggested that we watch each episode of Chuck with as many fans as possible while tweeting a phrase or hashtag that we could then trend. By trending a Chuck related topic we would get people who had no idea what Chuck was to check it out.

ChuckTV was on board with it (Wendy Farrington had suggested the name Chuck Me Mondays in a thread I created on the ChuckTV board) and we partnered in an effort to bring new fans along. This worked great during the first couple of weeks. Our first attempt had us trending in 4th place and our next in 6th. This was followed by 7th, 9th, and 10th place trendings. However, I could see we were receiving less and less participation each week and in discussions with Chuck fans on Skype, we predicted a trending loss the week it happened.

This was followed by several Twitter users suggesting that our trending topic was being suppressed or deleted by Twitter. I began extensive testing and discovered that despite some conspiracy theories, we were simply not trending because we were receiving less and less participation, OR we were going up against stiffer competition. And it is as simple as that. Twitter is getting more popular and other topics are trending above the hashtag we have been using: #chuckmemondays

Now, here is a mistake some people have made in researching their claims about Twitter blocking or deleting trending topics:

1) Twitter deletes trending topics, and it can block them. While it is possible our attempts are being blocked, why would Twitter wait 6 weeks to start? It makes more logical sense that we have simply stopped trending because we do not have enough people tweeting each week.

2) Most people are watching sites that count hashtags, but at least half the trending topics do not use hashtags. These non-hashtag trending topics are not counted on sites like and therefor our hashtag appears to be higher on the list than it actually is. In other words, if the top 10 trending topics include 5 non-hashtag topics, then #chuckmemondays would need to be in the top 5 of to even have the POTENTIAL of trending on Twitter.

So is there a solution other than convincing more people to participate each week? Actually, there may be another solution, though I cannot begin to predict how successful it might be. We could simply stop using the hashtag #chuckmemondays and instead type out the word as Chuck Me Mondays (or chuck me mondays). What is the advantage of doing it this way? Well, I will tell you:

1) If Twitter is actually blocking our current hashtag (and like I said, I do not believe they are), then this avoids that issue.

2) By using spaces in between and not using the hashtag, we have the potential of trending just the word Chuck or the entire phrase Chuck Me Mondays. Since Chuck is a common name and has been a trending topic for other reasons, we could essentially trend based on multiple attempts to trend the name Chuck, and still achieve our aims at targeting potentially new viewers to the program. Twitter would be unlikely to block a common name.

So, my suggestion is that this coming Monday, we either abandon the use of #chuckmemondays in our tweets, OR we use both #chuckmemondays and chuck me mondays in an attempt to trend one, or the other, or both.

What say you? Please comment.


  1. Hey Magnus - It's about time you entered the blogosphere! Glad that you finally see the wisdom of having a place where you can use more than 140 characters to get your point across and speak without censorship. Good step.

    IMO, I think we should use both the hashtag and spelled out although I'm still not convinced that we can trend with common words or that trending with just "Chuck" will do the cause any good since Chuck Norris seems to dominate the use of "Chuck" for trending purposes. Trying something new tho sounds good to me because we certainly need to keep up the effort and if we can figure out something that actually works better in the process all the better. It cannot be's my Monday Chuck fix for the week. :)

  2. Even without trending, the effort still has an effect. All of us have twitter "friends" who see those tweets every Monday evening. (And they tell their friends, who tell their friends, who... you get the idea.)

    Good to see you on the blogosphere, Darth. And thankx for your efforts, btw.

  3. I like the history about Chuck Me Mondays- it started out small, like most fan efforts, and grew to include people all over the world, all for Chuck. Chuck Me Mondays is great because it gives fans the opportunities to watch their favorite episodes again, while also introducing new fans to the show. I'll definitely be using the new tweeting method this weeks, thanks for the update DR.

  4. I think I said something about trending topics mostly not having hashtags last night. I just can't remember if I said it to anyone in particular. It seems like a good idea to drop the #. Of course since I haven't seen the episodes since approximately the week they originally aired, I'm trying to keep track of the plot and twittering is hard. Yes I could watch early, but...

    Oh, and I haven't done all the research you have. I just looked at the trending list last night, cause it struck me that that might be the case (most don't have tags) and it was.
    I bow to your researchfulness.
    I'll use anything I can paste in quickly. Thing is - Twitter runs like sludge for me. Facebook too. Brother says it's Ajax. And the new faster notebook isn't really helping. I spend minutes waiting for the letters I type to show up on the screen! I'm 15 words ahead when they finally do - if I can manage to hit the type here box before I start typing that is.
    Here, on blogger, not a problem. I'm guessing lack of Ajax.

    What is the median age of the Promote Chuck Nation? I'm 50 and even though I still feel like i'm 12, I can't multi-converse like I did at 35 in a Quantum Leap chat with 14 people and 6 IM's on the side. And I especially can't do it while watching TV.

    Does the WB or wherever people are watching online have Pause? Cause I could use a scheduled commercial break to get some tweets in. I'm on DVD, so it's not an issue to pause, but I don't know about the people watching online.

    So I vote for commercial breaks. (but yes, lack of # is good)

  5. Sounds like a good plan to try something different. Honestly, my participation has waned recently due to our hashtag not trending well anymore. It just didn't seem to be as fun or effective. But starting this Monday, I will try to type Chuck Me Mondays instead of or in addition to #chuckmemondays.

  6. Hey DR,

    I think the best course of action is to do both. That way if we can't get the hashtag to trend we can at least get Chuck to trend on twitter. I am up for anything that would get us to trend easier and get the Chuck name out to new fans.

  7. Wha? I'm SURE I commented on this earlier today. Did you delete my comment, Magnus, or did teh internets eat it? ;-)

    Seriously, if you didn't get my comment let me know and I'll try to duplicate it.

  8. Bethany, I did not delete your comment. You simply posted it in the other discussion. A couple of you posted your responses there instead of here. :)

  9. Ha! I certainly did. Duh. I hope you know I wasn't seriously accusing you of censorship! ;-)

  10. If I censor, it is only to keep out spammers and trolls. :) You are neither.

  11. Chucktv and Chuckmeout site have announced that the first 11 episodes of S2 will be available for streaming at 1201 AM 15 Aug (Saturday) How do people feel about a Chuckme midnight special. Have those fans that can stream, all watch First Date at 1201 on Saturday and twitter with #chuckmeout. Wouldn't that be a great way to say thanks to NBC? (and of course be a lot of fun)



No flaming, baiting, trolling, expletives, or racism allowed. And NO DISCUSSIONS of the actor's personal lives ever.