Spike gets social for 2011 Video Game Awards

When the 2011 Video Game Awards go live this weekend, Spike TV hopes to build buzz by live streaming the show online and with a number of initiatives aimed at harnessing conversation happening on social networks like Twitter, Facebook and GetGlue.

Where to Watch Super Bowl 2010 Commercials Online

When you consider that much of the TV audience spends the other 364 days of the year trying to minimize its exposure to advertising on TV, the hoopla over Super Bowl commercials is a bit strange. However, this year there’s the promise of summer movie previews, new marketing slogans and at least one controversial ad about abortion, and anyone who wants to catch up with the advertising zeitgeist will have plenty of opportunity.

Spike already has up a large showcase of ads dating back to 2002, as well as banned commercials from years prior. Also, according to a press release they’ll post this year’s ads almost immediately after they air on CBS.

CBSSports.com, as part of their overall video strategy, will also have the ads “immediately following” the game. Read More about Where to Watch Super Bowl 2010 Commercials Online

Ripe Digital Shuts Down: Report

shoreOnline network and VOD content provider Ripe Digital Entertainment is reportedly closing down and trying to sell its assets. Deadline Hollywood Daily broke the story, which paidContent subsequently confirmed with its sources.

Founded in 2004, Ripe Digital was focused on creating entertainment for dudes with the online networks RipeTV, OctaneTV and FlowTV, featuring such shows as Sexy Road Test, Funk Flex TV and Pauly Shore’s America. In addition to its online presence, the company had VOD distribution deals with Comcast (s CMSCA) and Time Warner Cable (s TWC).

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Spike Finds More Content Online, Picks Up Angel of Death

Spike TV will air the web series Angel of Death on its cable channel this summer, continuing Spike’s recent trend of acquiring online content.

Angel, which stars stuntwoman Zoe Bell as an assassin (see our review and our interview with Bell), was produced by Sony’s (s SNE) Crackle.com and debuted in March. The 10-part series was a hit online and by last count had generated 4.8 million plays — a strong showing for a drama.

Spike will air all 10 episodes as a 90-minute movie on July 25, three days before it will be released on DVD. When we spoke with Angel writer Ed Brubaker (embedded here), he indicated that this bundling of the series together into one film was always part of the plan, and one of the reasons why they had a $1 million budget (fairly large for a web show) to produce the series.

Spike is on a bit of a tear when it comes to acquiring web content. Earlier this year, it ordered 11 episodes of the James Gunn-directed series PG-Porn for use on Spike.com, and more recently, the network brought the comedy web series MoCap LLC to television.

MoCap LLC’s TV Transition Is Flawlessly Rendered

[show=mocapllc size=large]Moving from the web to TV can be a daunting task — just ask the guys at CollegeHumor. After all, mo’ money can truly mean mo’ problems, especially when you have to kowtow to censors and studio heads, increase the run time of episodes by 300 percent, and produce each episode knowing that the fickle viewing public could get you canceled faster than Michael Phelp’s butterfly stroke.

But fortunately, Worldwide Biggie’s MoCap LLC seems to be doing well creatively at its new home on Spike TV. A behind-the-scenes look at a fictitious motion-capture company, the show is really a showcase for extreme personalities engaging in strange behavior — the kind of comedy that works best if it’s written well. Thankfully, due to creator Chris DeLuca, it does.

In its TV incarnation, MoCap still leans heavily on the fauxumentary format that Chris Albrecht called cliché back in January 2008. And the rest of the show’s staples report in for duty: video game jokes, hot chicks, and a twisted bent to its humor that just barely avoids being offensive. It’s the skewed humor that won me over in the first episode of the web series. I knew it was wrong to laugh when Jeff was forced to act out scenes from the game Secret Cutting, but I just couldn’t stop.

And because it airs after midnight on basic cable, MoCap in its television incarnation operates under incredibly lax, though occasionally arbitrary, standards and practices. Read More about MoCap LLC’s TV Transition Is Flawlessly Rendered

Vid-Biz:BitGravity, Debates, Playboy

BitGravity Adjusts Video Delivery Quality to Match Connection; CDN launched a new API today that lets content distributors automatically tweak the quality of video stream delivered, based on the quality of the user’s connection. (VentureBeat)

Candidates Urge Networks to Free Up Debate Footage; letters from Obama and McCain camps want video debates available for sharing, blogging and re-posting. (Broadcasting & Cable)

Spike.com Premieres Playmate Show & Tell; new online series offers guys dating tips like “What Not to Do on a Date” and “How to Cook a Romantic Meal.” (release)

Xbox Gets PBS Programming; gaming geeks will get full episodes of science programming like Wired Science and Scientific American Frontiers, as well as Ken Burns documentaries. (paidContent)

Jupiter: Bad Economy Will Hit Pay TV, Not Broadband; study finds one-third of people would cut back on movies, 12 percent would drop premium channels like HBO, but only 2 percent would cut off Internet service. (MediaPost)

SMPTE Forms Committee to Standardize Matering and Packaging Formats; Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers working on formats for content distributed over broadband, could enable delivery of content from any online source, and play it back on any device. (SMPTE)

Elecard Devices Gets $10 Million; Russian IPTV developer gets convertible loan from Slaviansky Bank. (Quintura Blog)

I.TV Brings OldTeeVee Listings to the iPhone; free app lists television content in your area, lets you write and share reviews on your phone and adds calendar listings for shows you want to watch. (jkOntheRun)

Spike.com to Launch New Web Series

Spike.com, the online counterpart to the cable TV network of the same name, is overhauling its site and adding original web series in its bid to become the dominant source of men’s entertainment online. The site’s strategy for capturing those eyeballs? Boobs and bad behavior.

The new series Spike will be launching include an “advertiser-friendly” collaboration with Playboy.com; a Jackass-inspired show called The Crew; MMA Girls, which combines hot women and mixed martial arts; and Cinemassacre, a new show from Angry Video Game Nerd-creator James Rolfe.

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The New Boob Tubes

Alright. We get it. More men watch online video than women. But enough with the video sites targeting guys, please. You’re not carving out a niche for yourself if everyone‘s doing it. (Heh-heh, he said “doing it”). But really, how many sites devoted to fast cars and fast women does one Internet need?

Two new upstarts in the category came through NTV HQ inboxes recently: Kush TV and VIMBY. Though neither site comes out and says they specifically target men, a quick glance reveals it’s definitely a man’s world in there. But these young bucks face some, errr, stiff competition from sites already entrenched in the space.

So how do these noobs differ from the rest? Let’s take a look.

Men’s Sites and What They Cover
Site Cars Women Music Sports
Kush TV Yes Yes Yes Yes
VIMBY Yes Yes Yes Yes
Ripe Yes Yes Yes Yes
UGO No Yes Yes Yes
Spike Yes Yes Yes Yes
Break.com Yes Yes No Yes

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