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Viacom partners with online global TV distribution platform Joost

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MUMBAI: US media conglomerate Viacom and broadcast-quality Internet television service Joost have announced that Viacom will be a key content partner.

It will offer a range of brands and programming for free to consumers on the Joost distribution platform.

Under the agreement, Viacom’s divisions – MTV, Bet and Paramount Pictures – will provide television and theatrical programming on the Joost platform. Founded by Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis who were behind Skype, Joost is powered by an Internet platform that enables premium interactive video experiences while guaranteeing copyright protection for content owners and creators. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Joost will allow users to have free access to thousands of programs and channels not readily available on the Web. Through Joost, viewers can watch programming from many of Viacom’s brands on their computers through a customizable platform with advanced television viewing features such as links that lead to more information or related websites based on the content; and a variety of plug-in applications, such as instant messaging, message boards, and news tickers.

Currently available in limited beta, Joost combines TV and the internet by offering viewers a TV-like experience. Joost is the first online, global TV distribution platform, bringing together advertisers, content owners and viewers in an interactive, community-driven environment, according to an official release.

MTV will offer shows, both past and present, including Laguna Beach, Beavis and Butthead, Real World. Comedy Central will feature episodes from Stella, CCP’s and Freak Show. Nickelodeon, CMT: Country Music Television, MTV2, Logo, Spike TV, mtvU, and Gametrailers.com will also provide content.

VH1's offerings will include episodes of Flavour of Love, Surreal Life and I Love New York.

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