The Fox On Demand service is getting a major boost, per yesterday's announcement that Fox shows will start being streamed, supported by advertisements, through MySpace, marking perhaps the most active partnership between Fox's television side and the social networking site since the company purchased MySpace. The MySpace content, in addition to advertising during the content, is sponsored by Toyota and Burger King.
The announcement was that, in addition to streaming shows through the Web sites of local Fox affiliates, several shows will also be streamed on MySpace on a weekly basis. The beta version had seen Fox streaming programming through nine local affiliates, with the number now expanding two 24 affiliates which are participating in streaming.
The plan is to air a variety of the top Fox shows online, especially during this month, when the network's regular programming is being so regularly interrupted with baseball playoffs. By streaming shows through MySpace, Fox hopes to maintain viewer connections with these shows, so that the fan base won't lose interest during their hiatus form television.
The plan is to crawl information about how to view these streams online during baseball games for viewers who might be tuning in to see their favorite show, only to have no options to watch it. The shows that are being offered through this service are Bones, Justice, The Loop, Prison Break, Standoff, Talk Show with Spike Feresten, 'Til Death, and Vanished.
Previous episodes of these shows will be available, with plans to add new programs to the service in both October and November.
In order to view the content, you have to download the Fox Full Throttle video player, which claims to deliver HD quality programming. In the opinion of the folks at Lost Remote, "the move to keep viewers engaged during the confusing programming weeks of the MLB postseason is a smart idea. Now the next step is to produce new shows just for the Web."
Daisy Whitney with TelevisionWeek provides a good analysis from the user's perspective as to how easy it is to find the Fox content on MySpace and what it's like to watch it online, particularly having trouble with making the player fullscreen. She concludes that, "Fox on Demand works surprisingly well, but could use a little polishing."
Fox has been greatly expanding its video presence online, complete with a campaign across multiple sites promoting the launch of several of its shows. Fox has has been moving aggressively into the online distribution space throughout the summer.