Tube vets surf Web for ‘Net ventures

Rush, Cooperman to launch 18 sites in 3 years

NEW YORK — Television industry veterans Herman Rush and Alvin Cooperman have formed Infotainment Intl., an Internet production company that plans to launch 18 Web sites at a cost of $45 million over the next three years.

With the goal of becoming an independent source of interactive program content and eventually establishing its own Internet Entertainment Network portal, Infotainment has entered into a number of strategic alliances in the creative community.

Each of the Web sites will incorporate an original episodic series that Rush and Cooperman hope will eventually sell to TV.

“We are creating innovative, entertaining interactive programming for the Internet, with an eye to convergence to television,” said Cooperman, who was formerly VP of special programs and specials at NBC, and who created the Madison Square Garden Television Network as its president.

In association with New Tech Entertainment, an Internet production company, Infotainment is producing two sites that are slated to launch by Sept. 1: Romanceland.com and Crimebeat.com.

Infotainment is developing five other sites that will incorporate games with prizes, e-commerce and an online community. “There are no gatekeepers on the Internet, the doors are wide open,” said Cooperman.

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