Interactive TV News Round-Up (I): "America's Funniest Home Videos," Cablevision, Scripps, Canoe

--"America's Funniest Home Videos" Launches App for iPhone/iPod touch
--Cablevision Teams with Scripps on Promotion for its Interactive TV Real Estate Listings Service
--Canoe Ventures CEO, David Verklin, Stepping Down; COO, Kathy Timko, Named Interim CEO

Because the [itvt] editorial team is on the road this week, we are covering stories in this edition of the newsletter in round-up format:

  • The long-running show, "America's Funniest Home Videos," has launched its first app: The AFV App for iPhone and iPod touch, which was designed by Teleca. "The AFV App offers 14 video channels available, from dogs, cats, sports and celebrations to babies, teens, practical jokes, mishaps and fan favorites," the show's producers state in their press materials. "Fans will be able to interact with the show's content and create their own playlist so favorites can be accessed easily and shared on Facebook and Twitter directly from their iPhone or iPod touch. iPhone and iPod touch users can videotape from any location and instantly submit it to the show from anywhere." The app is available in the Apple App Store, free of charge.
  • Cablevision has teamed with Scripps Networks on a sweepstakes promotion for Optimum Homes, the real estate listings service it offers online and on its iO TV interactive TV platform. Entitled the "Optimum Homes Dream Designer with HGTV Sweepstakes," the promotion invites viewers to submit entries via the Optimum Homes ITV channel (606) or Web site, for a chance to win $15,000 and an in-home consultation by an "acclaimed HGTV Design Star" (note: season six of the show, "HGTV Design Star," premiered Monday). "Cablevision has partnered with HGTV to make the dream of a home design makeover a reality for one lucky winner, building on our Optimum Homes interactive service which allows our customers to find the next home of their dreams from the comfort of their own home, on TV or on the Web," Gemma Toner, Cablevision's SVP of marketing and business development, said in a prepared statement. "Optimum Homes is thrilled to offer the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to receive remodeling tips from an HGTV design pro and get the financial support to put towards a home design transformation."
  • Canoe Ventures said Monday that its CEO, David Verklin, will be stepping down at the end of the summer, and that Kathy Timko, who currently serves as the company's COO, has been named interim CEO. "Ms. Timko joined Canoe as COO in 2009," Canoe states in a press release. "She is an accomplished executive, having served in key management roles and board positions in both start-up and mature technology companies for the past 17 years. She has spent her career managing and scaling organizations, building products and infrastructure, and expanding businesses to meet market needs. One of her key areas of focus at Canoe will continue to be driving marketplace adoption through Canoe's sales organization." Said Comcast president and Canoe board member, Neil Smit: "Kathy's experience managing and scaling high-tech organizations, including her track record driving marketplace adoption and creating new business revenue, positions her well for leading Canoe through the next phase of its development. The business skill Kathy has demonstrated at Canoe over the last two years has been pivotal in helping the industry's national interactive television platform to surpass 20 million households and has led the company to its go-to-market phase. As Canoe expands its portfolio of ITV services and launches national dynamic ad insertion for video-on-demand, Kathy's business acumen will be key to deeper penetration of Canoe's solutions in the market."
North America