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MTV Overdrive Headed To Europe

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European fans of original programming with a rocking twist may soon be able to get their MTV when they want it and where they want it.

MTV Networks is expected to announce today plans to expand its MTV Overdrive online service to Europe. Rumor has it the on-demand site will go live in Ireland and England by Sunday with other European countries to follow.

Seeking to make the most of its tech-savvy, young audience, MTV has a been a pioneer in finding new ways to distribute content originally intended for the television.

MTV — which operates 111 television channels, including 11 in Britain, and 94 websites — has signed deals with more than 60 mobile phone companies in several countries, including Germany, South Korea, and Japan, to provide short video clips, comedy programs, games, and ring tones.

“Our viewers are early adopters of new technology, so MTV Overdrive will appeal to many of them,” said Angel Gambino, vice president of commercial strategy and digital media for MTV Networks UK. “But with the simplicity of the service we want this also to appeal to people who aren’t already consuming content online and so we made this to look as much as possible like a TV service.” – International Herald Tribune

If the speculation about the full service expansion is true, European fans will soon be able to check out such original shows as My Super Sweet 16 and Call to Greatness. The network also has movie trailers, a store, news and games available.

News of the possible expansion isn’t surprising, but it is nice to see it happen. As television goes to the Internet, the European market should not be overlooked. It’s a big one, that perhaps due to its diversity in language, often gets the short end of the stick on new releases. This happens with video games, movies, you name it — especially from North American and Japanese developers. Good job MTV for making the move. When iTunes catches on, I know some would be fans of certain download shows who will be very happy.

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