Advanced Television

AOL men back doc site

July 18, 2008

Three former top executives of AOL are backing a new online video venture being launched aimed at creating a new outlet for documentary feature films, a category that has struggled to gain mainstream attention. Founded by AOL Vice Chairman Emeritus Ted Leonsis, the site, SnagFilms, will offer about 200 feature-length films initially, with about 750 available by the end of the year. Instead of relying on offering its films on other big Internet video portals such as AOL or Microsoft Corp’s MSN, SnagFilms will let its viewers embed films on their own home pages or Facebook and MySpace pages, relying on a strategy made popular by sites such as YouTube.The business is backed by Leonsis, AOL co-founder and Revolution LLC Chairman Steve Case and former AOL executive and former Time Warner board member Miles Gilburne, who is now a venture capitalist. Former Discovery Communications executive Rick Allen is SnagFilms’s CEO.

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