RealTime IT News

CTV, Blue Zone Develop Broadband Live News

CTV Inc. and Blue Zone Productions Ltd. have agreed to jointly develop an interactive television and broadband news site.

When CTVNews.com is completed next year, the companies expect to offer consumers access to real-time news broadcasts and supporting print information.

"We've crossed the platform," said Henry Kowalski, senior vice-president, News, CTV Inc. "For the first time, viewers will have a service that offers all the immediacy of television news and all the depth of information the Internet offers, all at the same time."

CTV has licensed Blue Zone's proprietary NewsBz platform, to be applied to CTV Newsnet, CTV's wholly-owned 24-hour headline news channel, and to the CTV National News interactive properties under the banner CTVNews.com beginning Fall 2000. Blue Zone's proprietary enhance TV platform, is a convergence network integrating TV, the Internet and print media.

CTV will be the first broadcaster in Canada to hire a team of Web publishers to monitor live news and file content linked to news on the site. This will let CTV capitalize on the emerging broadband and set-top-box markets while building audience share and new revenue streams.

"CTVNews.com will be a unique video-centric, interactive news destination available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It'll be the first of its kind, well ahead of the learning curve others say stands between the merger of TV and the Internet," said Kowalski.