Current TV makes its move

Gore promotes new network to overseas markets

LONDON — Current TV, the U.S. channel that relies on user-generated content for a third of its schedule, is poised to move into more overseas markets.

Web chairman Al Gore, in London to launch a U.K. version of Current, said several distributors were keen to take the channel, which sells itself as “television for the Internet generation.”

“We’re in negotiations with a lot of distributors,” said Gore as Current bowed on satcaster BSkyB and its cable rival Virgin Media.

Gore claimed that in the U.S. the youth-skewed Current has 40 million subscribers. “Traditional television fails many viewers because it beams programs at them with little regard to their input and no opportunity for interaction,” he said. “Current instead facilitates a conversation with, and among, our viewers.”

Asked what he would have contributed to Current as an 18-year-old, Gore looked momentarily lost for an answer. “That’s not fit for discussion,” he adlibbed to laughter from the assembled media scribes. “Back in those days I was protesting against the Vietnam war, I’d probably make something on that.”

In Blighty, Current’s launch schedule features a film about guerrilla gardening, in which teams of gardeners assemble floral displays in public under cover of darkness; “One Night Rock Star” tracking a band’s hunt for a keyboard player; and a day in the life of U2’s Edge, filmed by Bono.

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