It's Internet television in reverse. In one of those wild and woolly everything-comes-full-circle kind of moments, technology start-up Clearleap wants to bring Web shows back to the TV set. Sure, that's been the goal all along for some -- incubating a hit show online and moving it to the tube. But let's get this straight: Is the business of Web video -- bred on the meritocratic notion that creators who were roadblocked from TV for whatever reason finally had an outlet to reach audiences thanks to the Internet -- now headed back to the living room? Apparently so.
The Atlanta-based start-up launched in March with a handful of small cable operators and telco partners on board who'll be mixing and matching from Clearleap's lineup of both national and local programming partners and Internet shows to create new linear channels and to populate video-on-demand tiers. Also introduced were interactive capabilities at the recent Cable Show. Service providers can pick a little of this Web show with a little of that local program and voilà - they've got a new TV channel. "We make it easy and profitable to bring new kinds of content to all the different platforms like cable and telcos and over-the-top connected TVs," says Braxton Jarratt, the company's CEO. Clearleap offers eyeballs - the chance to bring programming, and the ads embedded in them, to additional audiences. What goes around comes around, indeed.