mtvU Adds 2.6 Million Subscribers, Launches on Charter, Verizon FiOS, Suddenlink, AT&T and Nearly 70 Other Carriers Nationwide
Strategic Expansion Makes Network Available on Cable Systems in 700 College CommunitiesmtvU Spring '08 Programming Includes Mary J. Blige and Ludacris as Surprise 'Stand In' Profs for a Day, 80 New Episodes of Smash Series 'Professors Strike Back,' Best Emerging Music and Much More
NEW YORK, Jan. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- mtvU, MTV's 24-hour college network and a division of Viacom Inc.'s MTV Networks, today announced deals with leading distributors Charter Communications, Verizon FiOS TV, Suddenlink Communications, AT&T u-Verse and nearly 70 others, adding 2.6 million subscribers to the network's distribution. mtvU also unveiled highlights of its on-air, online and on campus programming for the Spring semester -- including a new season of Emmy-nominated "Stand In" with Mary J. Blige and Ludacris, 80 new episodes of the breakout series "Professors Strike Back," and the greenlight of student-produced, "How Do I Say This?: I Have a Crush on You."
In response to overwhelming demand from college students living off campus, on February 2nd mtvU will launch in more than 700 college communities nationwide, including major metro markets New York, Los Angeles, St. Louis and Dallas Fort Worth. The channel is currently broadcast to more than 750 US college campuses, with a combined enrollment of over 7.5 million; Saturday will mark a key milestone, as mtvU's distribution spikes by more than 20% and its Emmy-winning mix of emerging music and student-produced programming becomes available on TV, off university grounds, for the first time.
"mtvU's distribution has grown nearly 50% since launch thanks to strong student demand, and this groundswell of support has helped catalyze the next step in our evolution," said Stephen Friedman, GM, mtvU. "We're thrilled to partner with some of MTV's most valued, long-term distribution partners -- offering them a powerful new connection point to the trendsetting college audience -- and to bring the only 100% college-focused network to many more students. We have a standout lineup of new music and shows to kick things off."
Charter Communications will become the largest carrier of mtvU, accounting for nearly half of the network's new subscribers. "Charter is pleased to be launching mtvU. College-aged students are an important but often difficult to reach demographic. mtvU is a perfect addition to our line up to engage these customers and at the same time increase the overall value of our offering," said Cathy Fogler, Vice President and General Manager of Video for Charter.
mtvU is the largest and most comprehensive media network just for college students. The heart of the channel is the emerging music college students live their lives to, including music videos and profiles of the up-and-coming acts bubbling on the college scene. All of mtvU's programming is short-form and much of it is developed and produced by college students, featuring the top musicians, filmmakers and activists of tomorrow. Highlights of mtvU's Spring '08 programming slate include:
-- "STAND IN" - Mary J. Blige and Ludacris are among the cultural icons set to surprise college classrooms this spring, serving as guest professors for the day on upcoming episodes of Emmy-nominated "Stand In." With mtvU cameras following, these national figures will appear unannounced on campus in the months ahead, taking students out of their books for a chance to learn from those making history today. Past "Stand In"s have included Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, Madonna, Senator John McCain, Sting, Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Marilyn Manson, Bill Gates, Nas and Tom Wolfe. -- "PROFESSORS STRIKE BACK" - "Professors Strike Back" is a new runaway hit series, offering professors the chance to sound off and counter student criticism levied on mtvU's RateMyProfessors.com, the #1 online listing of collegiate professor ratings. Recent episodes have featured professors responding to comments such as "Eats children for breakfast," "He knows he's a dork," "I want to be her love slave!" and "Knowledgeable, but condescending." The show is already the most popular in mtvU's four-year history, and it's back with 40 new professors in 80 new episodes this semester. Past episodes are available on demand at: www.mtvU.com/on_mtvu/professors_strike_back/. -- "HOW DO I SAY THIS?: I HAVE A CRUSH ON YOU" - Developed and produced by a group of film students from UCLA, "How Do I Say This?" is an online video advice column where the site's community helps script and create videos for users with something important to say, but at a loss for words. Just in time for Valentine's Day, the site is asking users to submit ideas, advice, love songs or any kind of multi-media to answer the age old question: how do you reveal you're someone's secret admirer? User-submitted feedback will be combined with original production from the site's student creators in the form of weekly, short-form episodes. On February 11th, mtvU and mtvU.com will premiere a series of student-developed "I Have a Crush on You" music videos, which can be sent as e-Valentines. In the weeks after Valentine's Day, two users who used one of the videos to reveal their crush will have their testimonials showcased on-air and online. -- WYCLEF JEAN, SERJ FROM SYSTEM OF A DOWN & TUNDE FROM TV ON THE RADIO JOIN FULBRIGHT-mtvU FELLOWSHIPS BLUE RIBBON PANEL - The Fulbright Program, America's flagship international educational program supported by Congress and sponsored by the Department of State, and mtvU will continue showcasing the eye opening reports their first-ever fellows are beaming back from Panama, Cambodia, South Africa and Israel. Meanwhile, in advance of the second cycle's March 1st application deadline, musical virtuosos Wyclef Jean, Serj Tankian from System of a Down and Tunde Adebimpe from TV on the Radio have joined on to help the Fulbright Program and mtvU pick their 2008-09 fellows. Fulbright-mtvU Fellows are sponsored to travel abroad for a year and study how music can serve as a global force for mutual understanding. Past reports and application information are available at: www.mtvU.com/uconnect/fulbright/. -- "mtvU FRESHMEN FIVE" - Every semester, the mtvU "Freshman Five" names five on-the-verge artists poised to jump from college favorites to household names, such as recent alumni Gym Class Heroes and Amy Winehouse. The "Freshman Five" get top billing across all of mtvU's platforms for the term, including exclusive video premieres, behind-the-scene interviews, album leaks, live performances and more. The enrolling class for Spring 2008 is: -- The Fashion - five piece indie rock set from England making waves on the college scene with their laidback, retro twist. -- Georgie James - drummer John Davis and singer/songwriter Laura Burhenn pair up to create standout harmonies and melodies that soothe even the crankiest souls. -- Kid Sister - saucy, Chicago-based female MC who already has industry superstars Kanye West, Spank Rock and others warming up her tracks. -- Liam Finn - a Kiwi sweeping college campuses and making a name for himself with his independent, striking sound. -- We The Kings - four guys from Florida who got together in high school and are now making college rockers wild with their energetic, pop-punk tunes. -- "BREAKING THE VIDEO: MOTION CITY SOUNDTRACK" - A unique series giving college students the chance to produce and direct music videos for hot emerging acts, this semester mtvU premieres a new episode featuring Motion City Soundtrack's next single "It Had to Be You," created by Lauren Simpson of Texas A&M. mtvU will also be inviting student filmmakers to submit treatments for upcoming episodes with other top emerging acts. Students can submit via mtvU's BestFilmOnCampus.com, which offers unparalleled weekly, monthly and yearly opportunities for students to showcase their work, connect with peers and launch their careers.
More New Music and Student-Produced Programming
mtvU is the only place where college students can see new music videos, exclusive live performances and more from many of their favorite emerging artists every week of the year. New music programming on tap for the fall semester includes "House Band," a bi-weekly show on mtvU.com compiling exclusive performance footage, video premieres and interviews now showcasing the buzzworthy duo Tegan and Sara; "Backstage Pass," where college favorites Vampire Weekend, Kate Nash, Estelle, Hot Chip and all of the current "Freshmen Five" artists will respond to questions submitted on mtvU.com; and "Dean's List," the definitive top ten college music countdown hosted by a different college student each week, with guest hosts Aesoprock and Chris Walla this semester. In addition, every Monday mtvU and mtvU.com premiere a new episode of "The Freshmen" -- hosted by VJ Kim Stolz -- spotlighting five new videos from up-and-coming acts and giving college students the power to vote their favorite into rotation on mtvU.
Other popular mtvU programming back for Spring '08 includes "The Opening," giving upcoming grads the down low on what to expect from their first job and the opportunity to apply for similar jobs on mtvU.com. Motion City Soundtrack kicks off "My Shot With ... ," where college students interview some of today's biggest stars, such as John Legend, Beck, Jamie Foxx, Charlize Theron, Matt Damon and Jessica Alba. And "Fresh Produce" is back, every Wednesday profiling a handpicked batch of student-produced programming uploaded to mtvU.com from campuses across the country.
Broadcast to more than 750 colleges across the country, with a combined enrollment of over 7.5 million, mtvU is the largest, most comprehensive television network just for college students. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, mtvU can be seen in the dining areas, fitness centers, student lounges and dorm rooms of campuses throughout the U.S, as well as on cable systems from Charter Communications, Verizon FiOS TV, Suddenlink Communications, AT&T u-Verse and nearly 70 others -- reaching 2.6 million viewers in 700 college communities nationwide. mtvU is dedicated to every aspect of college life, reaching students everywhere they are: on-air, online and on campus. mtvU programs music videos from emerging artists that can't be seen anywhere else, news, student life features and pro-social initiatives. mtvU is always on campus, with more than 500 events per year, including exclusive concerts, giveaways, shooting mtvU series and more. For more information about mtvU, and a complete programming schedule, visit www.mtvU.com.
mtvU also owns and operates the College Media Network, the largest interactive network of online college newspapers in the US, and RateMyProfessors.com, the Internet's largest listing of collegiate professor ratings. The College Media Network comprises 550 campus publications that serve institutions including Brown University, the University of Illinois, the University of Southern California, the University of Texas at Austin and Duke University, with a combined enrollment of over 5.5 million students, reaching an average of 5 million unique users each month. RateMyProfessors.com reaches approximately 1.5 million college students each month, via the site's more than 6.6 million student-generated ratings of over 1,000,000 college professors.
MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom , is one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. MTV Networks, with more than 120 channels worldwide, owns and operates the following television programming services -- MTV: MUSIC TELEVISION, MTV2, VH1, mtvU, NICKELODEON, NICK at NITE, COMEDY CENTRAL, TV LAND, SPIKE TV, CMT, NOGGIN, VH1 CLASSIC, LOGO, MTVN INTERNATIONAL and THE DIGITAL SUITE FROM MTV NETWORKS, a package of 13 digital services, with all of these networks trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks connects with its audiences through its robust consumer products businesses and its more than 300 interactive properties worldwide, including online, broadband, wireless and interactive television services and also has licensing agreements, joint ventures, and syndication deals whereby all of its programming services can be seen worldwide.