Speed2 Online Channel Launches on Cox

LOS ANGELES — The Speed2 online channel is now available to Cox Communications
customers who get the linear Speed channel, pushing the authenticated
programming service close to the 20-million household mark, Fox

Access to the channel — which has original content and racing events that
aren’t shown on Speed — is available via Speed2.com. Eligible Cox subscribers
would select Cox from the providers menu, then enter a Cox user name
and password.

Speed2 initially launched on Time Warner Cable in May 2010. Other affiliates
are Dish Network, Bright House Networks and Cablevision Systems.

‘Jersey Shore’ Comes Back to … Jersey Shore

The G.T.L. set returns
to Seaside Heights on Jan. 5.

MTV will premiere its fifth campaign
of Jersey Shore at 10 p.m.
(ET), with the housemates revisiting
their old stomping/partying grounds
after their season abroad in Florence,

Jersey Shore’s international excursion
averaged a 6.7 rating with
MTV’s broad demo of persons 12
to 34, translating into 5.4 million
of those viewers. Jersey Shore averaged
7.3 million total viewers for its Italian run, after delivering a record 8.8
million for its season four premiere on Aug. 4.
Counting multiple airings and DVR playback, MTV’s top series ever averaged
9.4 million viewers and an 8.8 mark against the aforementioned demo during
its fourth season.

Cox, Cablevision Load Starz 3D VOD

DENVER — Cox Co mmunications
and Cablevision Systems now offer a handful
of 3D video-on-demand titles from StarzEntertainment, available to subscribers
with a Starz subscription and a compatible 3DTV.

That brings Starz to six affiliates that offer its 3D VOD titles, following
launches earlier this year by Comcast, Verizon Communications’ FiOS TV,
AT&T U-verse TV and Blue Ridge Communications.

Not many consumers, however, actually have the 3D-compatible television
sets required to view 3D programming. An estimated 3.6 million 3DTVs will
ship in the U.S. in 2011, according to the Consumer Electronics Association’s
July reforecast (up from its projection in January of 1.9 million units).

Starz’s VOD lineup currently includes: Alice in Wonderland, Disney’s A Christmas
, Toy Story 3 and Tangled from Disney; Sony’s Green Hornet; and
Step Up 3 and Resident Evil: Afterlife.

Coming in the next few weeks are Tron: Legacy and Gnomeo & Juliet, followed
in early 2012 by Mars Needs Moms, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger
Tides, Cars 2
and The Smurfs.

Soledad O’Brien Returns to CNN’s ‘Morning’

ATLANTA CNN has made the changes to its morning lineup official, with word
that Soledad O’Brien will return to hosting the network’s
mornings along with tapping Ashleigh Banfield and Zoraida Sambolin for the earlier hours.

O’Brien will host from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m., where
she previously hosted CNN’s American Morning
from 2003 to 2007, while Banfield, an ABC News
correspondent, and Sambolin, most recently a local
news anchor in Chicago, have been tapped to
host the 5-7 a.m. hours.

The not-yet-titled programs, which effectively
dismantle American Morning, will be launched
sometime in 2012. CNN has hired Shannon High
from NBC’s Peacock Productions to be executive
producer of both programs.

This anchor shakeup is the latest in a long line
of changes to American Morning in the last year.
After co-anchor John Roberts left the network to join
Fox News Channel in January, CNN chief business correspondent Ali Velshi
started filling in alongside co-host Kiran Chetry. When Chetry left in July, Christine
Romans and Carol Costello joined Velshi on the program.