“Q & A is live political theatre,” Jones tells them in a pep talk he delivers at about this time every Monday night. “Keep that in mind. You are part of a live audience and it’s important to have respect for each other and each other’s views.”
A typical show will attract on average 20,000 tweets, or between 500 and 600 a minute.
Two producers act as the first filter for tweets with the “qanda” hashtag or, as (executive producer Peter) McEvoy describes it, they throw the first bucket into the river. A third producer then sorts through the filtered posts, of which about 150 make it on to the screen. Popular tweeters get retweeted by followers, hence the increased chance of publication for a well-known viewer – and a trigger for criticism that the same voices appear repeatedly.
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