Skype duo unveils online TV venture

The team behind internet telephony brand Skype, Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, have unveiled their latest venture, an online television service called Joost, which was previously known as the Venice Project.

According to the project’s founders: “Joost combines the best of TV and the best of the internet by offering viewers a unique, TV-like experience enhanced with the choice, control and flexibility of Web 2.0.”

Like the Skype service which was sold to eBay last year, users download the Joost free software and use it to search the Net to watch films, video clips and other rich-media content online. The founders say the new project combines aspects of file-sharing software and conventional broadcast TV.

Joost chief executive officer Fredrik de Wahl says: “People are looking for increased choice and flexibility in their TV experience, while the entertainment industry needs to retain control over its content. With Joost, we’ve married that consumer desire with the industry’s interests.”

Joost has caused frenzied speculation among the media community as it is the first global TV distribution platform, and brings together advertisers, content owners and viewers in an interactive, community-driven environment.

The new online TV service will be ad-supported, but ad slots will be briefer and less frequent than traditional TV advertising.

It is anticipated that, once launched, the service will take on traditional TV channels in a bid to attract users and viewers. Joost has already struck deals with content providers such as Warner Music and Endemol.

The founders say Joost is the answer to “today’s broken TV model”, and anticipate high levels of peer-to-peer TV distribution via the Net and mobile phones.


Red Stripe to return to its roots as ‘the beer of bands’

Marketing Week

Iconic Jamaican beer Red Stripe is repositioning to strengthen its ties with the UK indie music scene, and a £2m advertising campaign that launches this week in the music press will support the move. The brand, which is brewed and distributed by Wells & Young’s Brewing Co for Diageo, is also launching the Red Stripe […]

DMA appoints Rosemary Smith as chairman

Marketing Week

The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has appointed Rosemary Smith as chairman to succeed Charles Ping, who has stepped down following the completion of his two-year term. Smith, who is managing director of RSA Direct, has been deputy chairman for the last two years. David Metcalfe, head of wholesale banking development at Lloyds TSB Scotland and […]

IPC Southbank picks MPG boss as ad chief

Marketing Week

IPC SouthBank has appointed Alex Russell as its new group advertising director, responsible for its upmarket women’s magazines including Marie Claire, Homes & Gardens, In Style and Woman & Home. Russell is head of press at media agency MPG and has responsibility for its key fashion and fragrance accounts. She replaces Mark Reen who is […]


    Leave a comment