ABC to Broadcast 24-hour Web News

For years ABC has been wanting to get into the 24-hour news broadcasting game, toying both with partnering with CNN and with starting a stand-alone 24-hour Internet broadcast to compete with the cable news networks. Now that the CNN partnership idea is dead, ABC has launched a new service called “ABC News Live” that will only be available to subscribers of ABC News on Demand (which costs $4.95 a month) or RealNetworks’s RealOne SuperPass (which costs $9.95 month and includes CNN video). The site will be a mix of press conference broadcasts, headlines and replays of ABC News shows. Perhaps most interesting, the service will let viewers use a “virtual control room” to watch feeds and headlines from four screens simultaneously. “At a time when more people are getting their news online during the day, it is critical that we make more content available to our audience,” general manager Bernard Gershon said in a statement.

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