You may have noticed more and more television shows plugging their Twitter accounts or Facebook pages in recent months? It seems the TV executives have finally acknowledged that social media is here to stay and while maybe a potential threat to their own livelihoods longer term, is certainly a necessary evil they need to be involved in.

Yet, TV is about to take an even bigger step by encouraging greater interaction with shows via established social media channels. Even a show like BBC’s Question Time encourages ‘live’ interaction with the debate by viewers using the shows’s hashtag #bbcqt, and it is almost becoming a must have for any live-programming.

So the debate this week that ‘talent’ shows like X-Factor are set to reveal Facebook-integrated voting systems is perhaps not as big surprise as it may at first seem. The hurdle has always been that encouraging viewers to login to Facebook or similar is a bit like encouraging them to make a cup of tea or press play on their DVD player during the show -it risks potentially losing them as an audience member with one quick move.

Yet, reports suggest this Autumn’s X-Factor show will feature the new integrated voting system and with similar show in the US American Idol expected to use similar technology in its new series next month, it seems the era of calling premium rate numbers and even pushing the red button on your tv remote may be coming to an end.

Do you think TV, Facebook and the like will ever fully integrate?

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