ChannelBlast Debuts New Broadband Programs

Broadband video network ChannelBlast today will launch a slate of ad-sponsored interactive streaming video programs. ChannelBlast will stream the shows live--allowing visitors to interact with others via chatrooms and webcams--and will also make programs available on demand.

Television veteran David Tochterman is producing the three 15-minute weekly shows: "NewzViewz," a news talk show that allows viewers to voice their opinions on topics selected by the viewing audience; "Room 1015," a music show that follows up-and-coming bands, where viewers will be able to live chat with the featured artists; and "VidiotsLive," an unscripted comedy show with short video clips that users can vote on.

"It's just as familiar as the kind of television programming that you would see, but it's made specifically for an Internet audience," said Tochterman, the producer for the three ChannelBlast shows. "It's short form, it's interactive, and it's designed for the online users." Tochterman's previous work includes "That 70s Show," "3rd Rock from the Sun," and "Grace Under Fire."

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ChannelBlast has signed three advertisers for the channels. Tower Records is backing "Room 1015," Syms Corporation is sponsoring "NewzViewz," and 1-800-Flowers is sponsoring all three shows. Currently, the advertising is limited to banner ads, but Jani Aronow, ChannelBlast's founder, said that pre-roll video ads would soon be incorporated. Aronow added that the network also intends to integrate advertisers' brands into the shows, and plans to launch more programs based on that idea.

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