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ABC gets interactive at 30th Annual American Music Awards

As it did during the recent spate of college football bowl games on ABC, interactive television software provider Wink Communications, a division of OpenTV, helped the Walt Disney Internet Group's Enhanced TV division (ETV) produce interactive television programming for the 30th Annual American Music Awards on January 13 on ABC.

Viewers with an Internet-connected computer could log onto ABC.COM during the AMA broadcast and access real-time information and participate in polls for the Coca-Cola New Music Award.

ETV's PC-based, interactive TV application included the Predict the Winner game, which allowed users to predict the outcome of each award as the nominees were announced, and earn points for correct choices. In addition to the game, Enhanced TV's programming featured the Push Channel, which displayed enhanced graphics, behind the scenes information and trivia synchronous to the action; Instant Polling and Live Comments, that enabled users to voice their opinions throughout the game both on the ETV application and on-air.

Fans accumulated points based on their performance, and top scorers were eligible for prizes. Each user playing ETV during the AMA telecast was eligible to win a trip for two and passes to next year’s 2004 American Music Awards. To access the application, viewers could log on to, and click on the ETV logo or go to

OpenTV, through its subsidiary Wink Communications, provides an end-to-end solution for sending interactive applications along with broadcast video to viewers' televisions. During the American Music Awards and after every commercial break, the Wink system displayed "Coke Facts," allowing viewers to get artist information with a click of their remote control. By using Wink's technology, advertisers like Coca-Cola have the ability to gauge viewer response and interaction.

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