Twitter-integrated traffic reporting debuts in local broadcasts

Michelle Clancy | 07-07-2012

Will helicopters soon become obsolete? Traffic watchers may be, if the first TV traffic reporting to incorporate live social media updates into a broadcast proves to be effective.

Twitter-integrated traffic reporting has debuted on Seattle's local KING 5 and KONG 16 stations, thanks to a beta partnership between the station's parent company, Belo, and Radiate Media. Throughout the newscasts, and as safe conditions allow, viewers can tweet KING 5 traffic anchor Tracy Taylor at @King5TracyT with issues they encounter on their commute. Taylor uses CONNECT to incorporate the tweets directly into her traffic maps, giving commuters immediate information for their morning drive. The Twitter feed and maps are also available online at KING 5 traffic.
KING 5 is the first station in the country to use CommuteVantage CONNECT, a new traffic-reporting tool from Radiate Media. CONNECT allows traffic reporters to merge live Twitter activity with on-air broadcasts.
"We are constantly looking for ways to further enhance our standout traffic coverage, so this tool is a perfect fit for us," said Mark Ginther, KING 5 executive news director. "Adding the capabilities of Radiate Media's CONNECT to Tracy Taylor's comprehensive traffic reports allows us to provide true 'as-it-happens' incident coverage to our viewers when they need it the most."
KING 5 newscasts that incorporate CONNECT air Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 7 a.m. on KING 5 and from 7 to 9 a.m. on KONG 16.