Commentary

A Broadband Network For TV Commercials? What's Next: The Fur Channel?

It's all about finding those video crumbs. Everything has value now and needs to be monetized. Content is king--even if the king is lacking in monarch-ing skills these days.

Some veteran Hollywood executives must be having a tough time coming up with ideas for shows, or content for networks. Why else would veteran TV show producer Steven Bochco, veteran TV syndication and cable executive Ken Solomon, and big-time music producer Jeff Ayeroff, among others, back a new broadband site, called adTV, that's all about new and old TV commercials.

Web sites focusing on TV commercials aren't new. Using TV commercials as entertainment isn't new. Many TV networks down through the years have aired "best of" or "funniest" TV commercial programs.

The new site, from Mark Patricof, former CAA executive and founder of digital media pioneer KPE, hopes to be the all-encompassing, dominant site with old and new TV commercials. Kind of like a more regulated YouTube for advertisers, in which advertisers will have more control. There'll be a search function by type, music, and performers, among key words.

Head-scratchingly different versus other advertising sites--advertisers will be paying for the privilege to be included. The return? Seemingly, all the control they want.

It comes down to this: Current terrain for broadband video sites has everyone looking to exploit existing video libraries--whether that's CBS' Innertube or AOL's In2TV. All are looking to open the vaults to libraries of TV shows that even cable networks and local TV stations don't want.

Next, I'm sure, will be an all-infomercial broadband network. Maybe there'll be a broadband video site for old TV network promos--where consumers can view a TV promo of NBC's "MacGyver" or of Phil Donahue teaser spots for his old syndicated TV show.

This all started with "Cops" and moved onto "America's Funniest Videos." But even this was restricting. YouTube is controlled and run by its users --be it professional, non-professional, copyrighted, and non-copyrighted.

With compliments to ex-HBO executive Michael Fuchs, I, too, want to see some all- encompassing content on fur: The Fur Channel.

The question: Is every piece of video, professionally produced or not, worth something? No. But it seems every morsel of it needs to be available, just in case one person wants it. Then the fur will fly.

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