Alliance drops ax on BlogTV

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TORONTO -- Canadian broadcaster Alliance Atlantis Communications on Tuesday said it will shutter its 6-month-old online video portal BlogTV.ca on Sept. 28 for lack of usage.

The closure follows Toronto-based Alliance Atlantis being acquired by rival broadcaster CanWest Global Communications as part of a CAN$2.3 billion ($1.99 billion) takeover.

Alliance Atlantis executives were unavailable for comment, but the broadcaster released an internal memo circulated earlier in the day from Barbara Williams, senior vp of programming and production for CanWest MediaWorks, CanWest Global's Canadian operations.

"When (BlogTV.ca) was first launched back in March, initial site traffic surged, but then declined and over the past quarter we've seen a steady decline, indicating that high usage is not likely," Williams said. "Moreover, the site has not produced the sales interest we expected, and as such we felt that winding the site down was the most fiscally responsible option."

Killing BlogTV.ca will mean the elimination of one full-time position at Alliance Atlantis as well as a number of contract and temporary employment positions.

It also will mean the end to a contract between Alliance Atlantis and Toronto-based GS New Media, the Canadian agent for the social networking format developed by Israeli Internet service provider Tapuz.

BlogTV.ca enabled Canadians with a webcam to stream and record their own video content online and to archive broadcasts.
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