News Corp is pooling its efforts to show FOX television programming on more than 200 broadcast affiliate web sites, according to a press release sent to us by Fox Interactive Media.
In general, local stations have been less than happy with networks selling programs on demand and bypassing TV, but FOX is bringing the affiliates in on the action, giving them access to prime-time programs for both streaming and purchase.
FOX is really pushing web and digital distribution (despite a few lawsuits to the contrary), releasing episodes on MySpace and DVD shortly after they air (and sometimes before). We’re pretty sure it’s the first network to offer primetime shows for download on its own sites. Rollout is scheduled for “the coming year.”
We wrote recently about Move Networks, the company that powers streaming TV shows on MySpace. It is a really excellent service, easy to use, available on multiple platforms, and nearly ad-free — way better than similar offerings from, say, ABC. The affiliate setup will also allow for downloads powered by FIM’s Direct2Drive, something not yet available on MySpace.
Affiliates can sell about 30 percent of ad inventory for the streaming shows, in line with the deal ABC cut with its own affiliates last fall, according to Broadcasting & Cable.
Shows will include 24, Bones, Prison Break, Standoff, Vanished, Talkshow with Spike Feresten, ‘Til Death, The Loop, War at Home, American Dad, and The Winner. New episodes will be available the night after they air on TV at a variety of price points, according to the press release.