[By Joel McCarthy]

Every month, more Canadians are severing ties with their cable providers. With so many new alternatives to the classic cable packages, it’s a natural progression for consumers looking for more control over their TV lives.

But the move can be problematic for some programs, especially those exclusively aired on publically funded stations. They run the risk of losing valuable viewership if the only way to watch is through traditional methods. Media is evolving, and any organization that wants to stay relevant would do best to follow suit.

TVO’s The Agenda with Steve Paikin has embraced the changing tide, making it far easier for cable cutters to tune in. They’ve become the first program in Canada to stream nightly via Periscope on Twitter, and for John Ferri, VP of Current Affairs and Documentaries, it was a natural progression.

“More than ever, we need serious journalism to find our way and decode our complex work,” said Ferri. “TVO has to be where audiences are, and we’re excited to explore this opportunity with Twitter.”

The innovation sets a precedent for similar Canadian programs. Not only will it help The Agenda keep and expand its viewership, but it also opens the door for the show to be more interactive. Viewer participation is the key to engaging an audience these days, and TVO’s willingness to evolve beyond the constraints of traditional TV falls directly in line with that.

Twitter Canada’s Jennifer Holt applauds the decision. She also believes the future is bright for video content on Twitter.

“In our increasingly ‘mobile first’ world, Periscope offers media organizations a great opportunity to reach viewers through video, anywhere, anytime,” said Holt. “We look forward to working with the TVO team on this exciting Canadian first.”

The Agenda with Steve Paikin airs weeknights on TVO at 8 p.m. and is now available on a wide variety of platforms.

(Photo by Joel McCarthy)