Emmis Radio Tunes Into TV

TV internet Emmis Communications is turning its top-ranking radio stations in New York and Los Angeles into TV stations, at least online -- with the addition of digital video-on-demand channels serving up music videos, celebrity interviews, and news headlines, as well as original programming custom-produced by the radio stations.

The rollout of online video channels, which began last year, should be complete about a month from now, according to Emmis.

Produced by Gen2Media Corporation, the digital video channels have already gone live at three big Emmis stations in New York: WQHT-FM/Hot 97, WRKS-FM/98.7 KISS-FM, and WRXP-FM/101.9. In Los Angeles, WPWR-FM/Power 106 and KMVN-FM/Movin 93.9 are the next slated to get online video offerings. The Emmis stations represent a variety of popular formats, including urban adult contemporary, hip-hop, adult rhythmic contemporary and rock.

Emmis joins a growing list of radio broadcasters supplementing their broadcast offerings with online video via station Web sites and stand-alone portals.

In July 2008, CBS Radio launched a new online video platform, operated by WorldNow, to facilitate the online business of its 140 radio station Web sites. It debuted on the Web sites of four of the company's New York stations: www.fresh1027.com, www.wcbs880.com, www.923krock.com and www.wfan.com.

Clear Channel Radio has also pushed to greatly increase online video offerings. In May 2008, the company announced a deal with Clearspring for widget syndication, which will allow users to link their Web pages to audio and video content on Clear Channel station Web sites, capitalizing on the popularity of video features like Stripped, where a performance by the Jonas Bros. attracted 372,000 plays in the first 10 days.

On the ad sales side, Clear Channel also announced a partnership with StudioNow, an online network of video advertising freelancers, to help local advertisers produce professional-grade video and display ads for Clear Channel station sites.

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