You started the show independently last year, posting the videos on YouTube. How did you end up becoming a part of the official X Factor machine?
"It's been an interesting journey. As you say, I did them last year and there was no motive for it other than being a fan of the show and I was bored and needed a little project. I had come off the back of a show on TV that I wasn't massively happy with, so I wanted to do something that I liked and that gave me the feeling of, 'I'm doing something good here'. It became a bit culty and when I went on as a guest on the Xtra Factor last year, some official people told me that there had been discussions about it and lawyers had been called. So I got incredibly worried and thought it was all over. But thankfully they didn't do anything bad and this year Talkback and SyCo called me in for a meeting and said, 'yeah, we want you to do it again: bigger, better and we'll pay you'. All those three things made me say, 'yes, that sounds like the perfect job'."
And is it right that Simon Cowell's a fan?
"Simon has seen it and he is a fan of the show. I'm not really down in the studio very much; I sit in my house like a hermit most of the time. But I did go down there earlier this series and there was a crossover point on the staircase, where he told me, 'I love the show, I think it's genius, I think it's clever and it makes me laugh'. He was with Louis, he asked Louis if he'd seen it, Louis of course, said 'no'. Simon said, 'you have to see it' and gave him the web address and told him to watch it in his dressing room later. Since then Louis has seen it and he apparently loves it as well."
I'm not sure whether Louis would get it...
"I did say to Louis, 'thank you for providing an awful lot of content for the show'. I think Louis is well aware of his role. It's really nice when anyone says that they've seen the show, but Simon Cowell is the X Factor. He is in charge of the whole thing. It would be unlike a man like him who runs the whole thing to not know about it, but the fact that he watches for pleasure is very nice to hear."
It's good to know that Simon can laugh at himself as well...
"Yes and I think that's something that is often misconstrued about Simon Cowell. People often say, 'oh he can't laugh at himself'. But if you think back to the Pop Idol days, Ant & Dec were always dressed up like him every week and he's the one on Xtra Factor who is able to take things in good grace and laugh at himself, like when he forgot Zain from One Direction's name last week. Hey, he likes the F Factor - he must have a good sense of humour."
Online TV shows have a dodgy track record, but you've had huge success with various projects. What's the secret?
"I do think it is hard with online, because it's hard to tell what makes it work. But personally, I think it's just 'a good show'. I think the problem is people go, 'oh it's online, slash the budget, make it cheap'. Yes, you can make things cheaper online, but there shouldn't be a noticeable dip in quality when you watch it. Online is overrun with user-generated content, and that's fine, there's a place for it, which is YouTube. But I think if you make something that is really good, people will watch it no matter where it is broadcast. There's no real formula, just make a good show that people will want to watch and share. I'm really fortunate that I've worked on two really good ones myself. With anything I do on the internet, I want it to be as good and done with the same sort of care that would be given to a TV show. We did that with Pocket TV, which I worked on and now that has started airing on Channel 4. Pocket got viewer numbers that, if they had been on telly, they would have been a huge hit. It had something like 12 million views by the end."
You've also branched out into radio...
"I am loving the Radio 1 stuff, but I'm very much still learning the ropes - I'd never done any radio before. But I absolutely adore doing it. Growing up, TV was always my first love, but I think it has some serious competition now from radio. Let's just hope the two of them can get along nicely and we can all be friends."
Your very tidy flat and array of fine knitwear has become a real talking point for F Factor fans. Are you becoming more conscious about your outfits?
"Well, we have to make sure the flat is kept tidy. And when I say kept tidy, I basically mean pushed to the side of the room you can't see. It is never truly clean and it's all a bit messy. But we do try to arrange the cushions so that they look nice. And in terms of the jumpers, I didn't realise it was a thing until I got lots of comments on Twitter about my "Christmas-y jumpers". I'm just a fan of knitwear. Always have been, always will be."
Would you ideally like to present a show like Britain's Got More Talent or The Xtra Factor? We think you'd be great, but could you handle the bit where you have to hug the rejected, tearful 16-year-old?
"The short answer is yes. Thinking in the long-term, I think I'm the sort of person built for a sister show. I think whatever the brand, if you love a programme and you can show that onscreen, then it really works. I love The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent. Their spinoff shows are filled at the moment and I'm busy with the F Factor, but if such a position were to come available then I think I'd be crazy to not do it. And I'd hug the crying 16-year-old, I'm sure I'd be fine."
Who are you backing to win The X Factor?
"I can't work out if I'm allowed to speak about who I like or not. So I won't say who I want to win, but the people I think will be in the final are One Direction, Rebecca and Matt. I think Rebecca could steal it. She's really difficult for the F Factor, because she just comes out and sings brilliantly. There's no silly banter, none of the judges argue about her - she just comes out and sings amazingly and then goes backstage again. I don't think she's had a duff note all series and every week she gets better. I know Dannii Minogue says that weird cliche, 'I want to buy your album', but I actually would like to buy her album. I love listening to her voice. But I also love Matt and One Direction, so thank God I'm not a judge."
And finally, do you agree with us that Louis Walsh should be introduced to America on the US X Factor?
"I'm not sure. But if not Louis Walsh, they need a Louis Walsh equivalent. You need him for the dynamic. I don't think people appreciate what Louis provides. Dannii and Cheryl bring the glamour and showbiz, Simon brings the authority, but Louis brings that weird spontaneity and often ill-thought-through judging. You can't buy that. Occasionally you get Cheryl and Simon sparring, very rarely will Dannii say anything to the others, but you can guarantee at least a couple of times each show that they will all have a go at Louis and Louis will have a go back. And that's what you want. You want someone who will say things like, 'You're the new Elton John' and be contentious. I adore Louis, but if him Dermot, Cheryl and Simon all do the US X Factor, it will basically be our show without Dannii! I can't wait though. I think the US X Factor will blow American Idol out of the water. You watch Idol and it's so dull with the staging and everything. I think it will be the Idol killer."
Watch Matt's latest edition of the F Factor on the official site itv.com/xfactor