The New Yorker‘s famous cartoons can now be viewed as an animated, ad-supported video podcast on iTunes through RingTales, an online animation syndicator. As part of the deal with the Conde Nast publication (through its cartoon licensing arm, The Cartoon Bank), Santa Monica-based RingTales has the exclusive license to animate and distribute the New Yorker library of over 70,000 cartoons. Podcast subscribers will receive three new animations of The New Yorker “RingTales” each week. In addition to iTunes, which had 14 episodes 20-second episodes available as of Friday morning, the downloads will be available on the magazine’s site, newyorker.com, in March.
RingTales’ overall aim is to create an online version of newspaper-style comics pages that will be available online — and fully ad-supported with post-roll commercials, Jim Cox, CEO of RingTales, told ClickZ. RingTales has yet to name specific advertisers, but is in talks with several. Michael Fry, president of RingTales, said since the New Yorker database of cartoons is so large, RingTales can select cartoons that will fit potential advertisers’ needs. Release.
Staci adds: I had a lot of misgivings when I first heard about this, but checked out a captionless cartoon just now and was pleasantly surprised. The ad, by the way, appeared to be a PSA for drugfree.org. Will be interesting to see if the magazine’s advertisers pick up on this niche within a niche.