I have a slew of screen shots and the inside scoop on the cool new creation from the geniuses behind KaZaA and Skype. The Venice Project has begun secretly doling out BETA Tester invites, and I have been fortunate enough to be among them.
Skype and KaZaA co-founders Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis are at it again. After first shaking up the the music and telephone industries, the pair is taking on the television networks with their latest creation, “The Venice Project.”
The fact that you watch clips at your own pace and your own discretion is what sets it apart from current streaming platforms like TVUPlayer, or sites like TVLinks and Pick and Watch. The only drawback is that the content right now is for the most part lame and limited in variety and selection.
It’s mainly music oriented, and has no well-known or popular content, the “World’s Strongest Man” of ESPN fame and the old-school black and white “Lassie” being the only ones I had ever even heard of before.
After agreeing to the usual stuff………
“She” loads up and starts playing one of the channels at random.
Here’s a shot of the “Fifth Gear” channel, which caters to fans of sports cars, speed, and racing.
To get an idea of what the controls are like, you can see them here in the image below. Starting on the upper left, you have, in order: minimize, full-screen vs half-screen toggle, and main menu.
The arrows that you see on the bottom left-hand side allow you to scroll through and within channels.
Every couple of show or so that you watch bring up a quick commercial advertisement to watch. They’re not too bad and only last about 5 seconds.
Going to the main menu, we’ll take a look at some of the channels available to watch.
As you can see, yes that’s right, they have a “Paris Hilton channel.”
To get a better look, by selecting the channel you can get up close and personal with this lady of partying and video fame. Here’s a view from a clip called “Making the Album.” So for those of you who bought her album and couldn’t get enough, here’s the “backstory” behind it.
- Here’s a rundown of them all”
- Fifth Gear
- Warner Bros. Records
- Green Day
- Red Hot Chili Peppers
- Paris Hilton
- Explora Channel
- MTV Staying Alive
- World Strongest Man
- Jizzy TV
- What’s Popular
- The Roger Sisters
- VOY TV
- Critical Shorts
- Off the Fence – Docs on Demand
- Lazy TV
- Havoc Action Sports TV
- Beyond the Pit
- The Diddy Channel
- Atlantic Street
- Live @ Muc
- Hot & Wet
The “Hot & Wet” channel is one of the more interesting ones, offering “water-balloon dodgeball matches” and “beach hot-bod bikini contests.”
As for the “Diddy Channel,” I think the name says it all.
Overall, The Venice Project is pretty cool, though the content offerings were kind of a disappointment. But, considering it’s still in BETA and the fact that it could potentially change the face of television, they get a lot of leeway in my book with these first few baby steps.
I think in the future that content production companies will see the potential of a platform that can carry their programming straight to the consumer without any of the associated payments for distribution, region rights, etc.. Perhaps even shows that may otherwise have never made the cut in the cutthroat world of Primetime TV could find a home here. Revenues could be derived from commercial and the chance for advertisers to reach a larger or otherwise untapped audience.
The Venice Project. Are we seeing the dawn of a new era for TV viewing? Time will tell, but so far it looks quite promising.
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