WWE Moves Spike Shows to Broadband

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World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. will bow via broadband two of its Spike TV-distributed series on a free-video-on-demand basis beginning Sept. 30.

The WWE Sunday Night Heat series, as well as its Saturday-night WWE Velocity show, will now be offered weekly on Fridays and Saturdays, respectively, via the wrestling organization’s Web site (www.wwe.com), according to WWE senior vice president of interactive media Chris Chambers.

Along with original matches, each show will also have unique content never before seen on the programs.

Spike’s carriage agreement for the two series, as well as WWE Monday Night Raw -- which will air on USA Network beginning Oct. 3 -- expires at the end of the month.

As for Raw, Chambers said the Web site will stream a free, exclusive 30-minute preshow event inside the arena prior to USA’s telecast. The site will also provide a live community chat during the Raw telecast for fans to discuss the show.

Further, the Web site will pick up Raw’s feed during USA’s commercial breaks. “If there’s a match that’s interrupted for a commercial break, it’ll still be going on the Web site, or we could just take shots of the fans to see who has the craziest sign,” Chambers said. “We want it to be more interactive and get to the point where our technologies are working together.”

The Heat and Velocity additions, along with the Raw enhancements, will draw more users to the WWE’s already popular Web site, which Chambers said generates more than 30 million video streams per month.

Along with Web-exclusive interviews and shows like Byte This!, the site also distributes the company’s live monthly pay-per-view events simultaneously with their television distribution.

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