Cable Operators

Discovery to Stream Full-Length Episodes Online

8/02/2007 3:19 AM Eastern

Starting Friday, Discovery Communications will begin offering free full-length episodes of select series and specials on its Web sites as part of an expanded online initiative.

The initial content will include a premiere episode of Animal Planet’s Meerkat Manor, available starting Friday prior to its network debut next week.

Starting Aug. 8, the company will offer day-after episodes of Discovery Channel’s Dirty Jobs and TLC's LA Ink. Discovery said it will add more full-length episodes of other programs regularly.

“We have had success in developing a VOD [video-on-demand] service that builds buzz, awareness and ratings for our networks and drives business for our distributors,” Bruce Campbell, Discovery’s president of digital media and business development, said in a prepared statement. “The addition of full-length online episodes represents a natural extension of our VOD strategy.”

The player lets users pause and toggle between episode chapters but ensures that ads inserted into the episodes cannot be skipped.

Discovery is using the online-video publishing system from Move Networks, which uses Web-based files to stream video to Windows or Macintosh computers.

Utah-based Move’s other customers include ABC -- which is using Move’s system to deliver HD-resolution video over the Internet -- Fox and The CW.

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