Music-oriented cable network MTV plans to integrate its website and two channels, creating a multimedia package which it will sell to advertisers.

The new scheme, branded MTV360, will gradually be implemented over coming months, becoming fully operational by July. Based on studies suggesting that MTV viewers surf the web and watch TV at the same time, the project plans to co-ordinate programming between the two channels and the website, so that viewers are directed from one platform to the next.

MTV also hopes to encourage more cable operators to carry the MTV2 channel by promoting high-speed internet connections – available via the same operators – across its network. Another feature of the scheme will be a (legal) music download service to exploit the problems encountered by music-sharing website Napster, whose controversial file-sharing technology MTV will eschew.

MTV360 will be offered to advertisers as a single package. “Some advertisers still want to buy TV only,” explained Nicholas Butterworth, president of the network’s interactive arm, “But we’re seeing a lot of demand for cross-media buying.”

News source: New York Times