Current Replaces CEO With MTV and Ad Industry Vet

Multiplatform video company Current Media said today that Mark Rosenthal, the former president and COO of MTV Networks and CEO of Interpublic Media, will replace co-founder Joel Hyatt as CEO.

RosenthalRosenthal had been a Current board member since the inception of the company. Hyatt will now serve as vice chairman.

Rosenthal had most recently been vice chairman and president of media platforms at the troubled ad startup Spot Runner, which he joined a little over a year ago from Interpublic.

Current says its cable channel is available in more than 60 million households and its web site has more than 7 million unique visitors per month. Chairmain Al Gore said in a recent speech that the site now receives more than 10 million video views per month.

The most notable news out of Current in recent months is something it hasn’t actually covered — the imprisonment of two of its journalists. Laura Ling and Euna Lee are being held in North Korea after being convicted for trespassing there while they were on assignment from the network.

With no disrespect to that terrible situation, Current still has some really fantastic talent — we love the folks at InfoMania (recent coverage) — and some great opportunities to make the web and TV work together. But it hasn’t always been smooth sailing, and the network scrapped IPO plans earlier this year, citing the bad economy. In the run-up to the IPO we had also challenged the company’s claims that it was profitable.

Current’s most recent management hire was Paul Levine, president of new media, who had previously been with AdBrite.

Sorry about the poor quality pic; Current hasn’t updated its management files yet.