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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

ConnecTV Launches Biggest Social TV Network Nationwide with Five Media General Stations

RICHMOND, VA. — ConnecTV today announces the largest-ever rollout of a social media platform for television with backing by Media General and nine other leading U.S broadcast companies. The platform synchronizes social engagement, complementary content and program promotions with television programming from any source, in any market across national cable networks, regional sports networks and local stations affiliated with ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, CW and MyNetworkTV. The coast-to-coast rollout establishes ConnecTV as the most dynamic and engaging social network for television viewers in the U.S.

Viewers of ConnecTV on partner stations beginning with the top 40 markets will immediately receive additional social television benefits that include synchronization of local news, weather, sports and entertainment programming along with social polls. Media General stations included in the top 40 launch include: WFLA (NBC-Tampa), WNCN (NBC- Raleigh), WCMH (NBC- Columbus, Ohio), WVTM (NBC- Birmingham, Ala.) and WSPA (CBS- Spartanburg, S.C.).  A total of 85 local ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, CW and MyNetworkTV stations will be integrated into the ConnecTV experience at launch with plans in place to grow to 215 stations in communities across America.

How ConnecTV works:

  • ConnecTV is the only social network that works across all channels and all shows for both real-time and time-shifted television viewing.
  • ConnecTV delivers a rich content experience that syncs instantly with the show you’re watching and delivers complementary play-by-play stats, news, information and quotes that can be shared with friends and followers—all with a single touch.
  • Viewers can also invite specific friends to join them for “viewing parties” and chat about their favorite shows and sporting events.
  • Seamless integration with Twitter and Facebook allows users to connect and organize their friends, favorite shows and social engagement all focused on TV.
  • ConnecTV uses a combination of content recognition algorithms, closed caption and a diverse mix of more than 100 data sources to drive the accuracy, relevancy and speed of synchronization with television programming.

ConnecTV is available as a free download for the iPad from the Apple App Store, or for any PC browser at  ConnecTV will be introducing versions for the iPhone and Android smartphone and tablets in the next 45 days.

The combined technical capabilities of the ConnecTV platform provide a unique social and content user experience designed to transform television into a highly interactive second screen experience, in tandem with a live or time-shifted program. While all ConnecTV users will enjoy an extraordinary viewing experience, TV fans who watch along with ConnecTV’s local partner stations will have the advantage of heightened benefits, including:

  • Social conversations sparked locally by on-air personalities and station production staff surrounding news, sports and entertainment topics of the day.
  • ConnecTV instant “TalkBack” social polls mirroring those on the air to increase communication with local audiences.
  • Relevant local marketing that is synched to television advertising spots, or engages the “viewser” in new ways that activate both national and local marketing campaigns.
  • Simultaneous promotions of upcoming news stories, local specials and national programming on both the main and second screens.

“Local engagement is at the heart of all social media, from Twitter to Facebook to Groupon,” said ConnecTV Co-Founder Ian Aaron. “ConnecTV is the only social TV network with a true investment in the local viewing experience and an unparalleled strategic partnership with the leading media companies in America.”

ConnecTV partners include a consortium of nine leading U.S. television broadcast groups know as Pearl.  The companies include: Media General Inc., Belo Corp., Cox Media Group, E.W. Scripps Co., Gannett Broadcasting, Hearst Television Inc., Meredith Corp., Post-Newsweek Stations Inc. and Raycom Media. Together, Pearl broadcast partners represent more than 200 local ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, CW and MyNetworkTV affiliate stations in 45 of the top 50 markets reaching 76 million households. As part of their ConnecTV partnership, Pearl will expand and coordinate the affiliate base of participating local broadcasters, integrate local content, deliver on-air, on-screen and on-line promotions and sell complementary second screen advertising that synchronizes with the broadcast.

Investor Contact:
Lou Anne Nabhan
(804) 649-6103

Media Contact:
Ray Kozakewicz
(804) 649-6748