Last week, USA Today published an interesting article about how the television industry is using blogs to provide obsessed fans with loads of extra information about their favorite shows and characters. Blogs are now produced by television shows like Grey’s Anatomy, The Office and That 70’s Show. The trend is for the blogs to be done in character, providing further glimpses into the character’s pysches. Other blogs are written by show writers or producers and provide cool extras like listings of songs played during each episode.

The best example of an in character blog is the weblog written by the character Dwight from The Office. It includes information about a sales piece Dwight is drafting called “How to Literally Kill the Competition”, which features chapters like “The Customer is Always Wrong” and tips on how to seduce the customer with one’s power and to get to know them “Like a small lover”. This blog is written by the actor who plays Dwight while he is on set, sitting at his character’s desk. Most of the other actors on The Office are active on MySpace,including the actress who plays Pam.

Hollywood is also heavily into podcasting. The producers/writers of shows like Lost and Grey’s Anatomy produce weekly insider podcasts that are posted on iTunes. And actor Jack Black is producing a weekly video podcast from the set to promote his new film, Nacho Libre.  It is currently the 5th most popular podcast on all of iTunes.