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Several third-party news websites will be carrying Sky News’ election debate Thursday night, competing for viewers who don’t yet have digital TV.
SkyNews.com’s executive producer Julian March tells paidContent:UK that Telegraph.co.uk and Guardian.co.uk, in addition to News Corp (NYSE: NWS) stablemates Times Online and Sun Online, will be taking the channel’s feed from the broadcast in Bristol. ITV.com tells us it’s also hosting Sky’s stream.
It may not be initially clear what these sites, which may be considered rivals, stand to gain. Digital TV platforms, which all carry Sky News’ TV channel for free, are already evident in 91.4 percent of UK homes (source: Ofcom Q4 ’09). But some, non-digital viewers are seeking an alternative means of viewing, according to our trawl of Twitter (below), presenting the sites an opportunity…
Each carrying the same feed, the news sites will be competing with Sky’s own SkyNews.com, which will benefit from on-air trails from the channel – but they will get to duke it out on surrounding features…
ITV (LSE: ITV) tells us ITV.com will be rolling out the same live Facebook chat and CoverItLive window it used for its own debate last week, with live analysis from correspondents in the spin room and correspondent Libby Wiener answering chatters’ questions.
Sky News has offered its debate feed to the UK broadcast pool, but the only analogue channel taking it is BBC Two, delayed after Newsnight. In step with BSkyB’s new-found embrace of platforms other than its own satellite network, Sky News says there are a total 51 ways to watch the broadcast.
Such events, for watching, are characteristically TV events – but there’s ample opportunity for sharing viewpoints online during the broadcast.