- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 3, 2015

NEW YORK (AP) — Vice Media is adding a U.S. cable channel to its digital video empire as it tries to gain viewers in old as well as new media.

The network, tentatively called “Viceland,” is “the next step in the evolution of our brand and the first step in our global roll-out of networks around the world,” said Shane Smith, Vice co-founder and CEO, in a statement Tuesday.

Viceland is expected to launch early next year, taking over A+E’s H2 channel. It will be available in about 70 million homes.

Vice, based in the home of all-things-hip, Brooklyn, New York, caters to millennials - the 18-to-34-year-olds prized by advertisers. It was born as a print magazine in Montreal in 1994, and made its name with edgy, provocative online video.

It dipped its toe in TV with a short-lived MTV series, “The Vice Guide to Everything,” that started in late 2010. Then it struck a deal with HBO for a weekly news magazine that began in 2013. That’s grown into plans for a daily newscast on HBO and documentaries.

Live TV ratings have slid as viewers migrate online - watching Vice videos on YouTube, for example. Time spent on live TV is slipping as smartphone use climbs, according to ratings tracker Nielsen. Traditional media companies like A +E, Comcast’s NBCUniversal and Disney have invested in digital media outlets.

But TV is still a huge force, even for the young. A study released Tuesday by Common Sense Media showed that 58 percent of teenagers watch TV every day, with half that time spent on live viewing.

Oscar-winning writer-director Spike Jonze, a Vice partner and creative director, is overseeing the development of Viceland. It will feature hundreds of hours of new programming developed and produced by Vice.

The initial slate of prime-time shows will include “Gaycation” (with Ellen Page and Ian Daniel), “Huang’s World” (with Eddie Huang), “Noisey” (with Zach Goldbaum), “Vice World of Sports” (with Sal Masekela) and “Weediquette” (with Krishna Andavolu).



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