Turner Broadcasting System plans to split up its combined Cartoon Network/Boomerang on-demand package into separate offerings.
It will also dip further into Cartoon’s “Adult Swim,” adding a unique component of content from that programming block.
“On-demand allows us to extend the value of our brands with consumers and allows us to build the value of the business with our distribution partners,” said Turner executive vice president of operations and strategy Jim McCaffrey said during a presentation at Turner’s financial analysts meeting in Atlanta last Tuesday (June 29).
McCaffrey said the Cartoon/Boomerang On Demand product ranks among the top five content packages of any VOD rollout they’re involved in. Given that popularity, the company decided to “brand it into two programs,” he said.
In addition, McCaffrey said Turner will launch an Adult Swim VOD package, on which one-third of all content will be exclusive to the on-demand platform.
In April, Cartoon expanded its late-night animated block, popular with young adults, to include Saturdays (the programming also runs from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Sunday through Thursday).
McCaffrey also said Turner is working with Time Warner Cable to offer same-day VOD windows for news shows on Cable News Network, including Paula Zahn Now and Anderson Cooper 360.
Most VOD-server manufacturers have the capability to encode linear content on the fly and place it on servers within minutes after it airs.
McCaffrey, who also oversees Turner’s digital video recorder and online content initiatives, said the company is researching DVRs, among other technologies, in a newly developed media lab.
It’s current focus: examining DVR’s effects in terms of such areas as usage, ad skipping and overall TV consumption. It’s too early at this stage to conclude that DVRs will dramatically hurt ad sales, McCaffrey said.
“We believe the U.S. ad business is inherently resilient,” he said, noting that one-third of Turner’s ad revenue comes from news and sports — genres largely unaffected by DVRs.
“News and sports mitigate our risk,” he said.
The TBS Web site recently launched “Braves Extra,” which includes unique video — such as different camera angles, like a catcher’s cam — and interactive trivia games.
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