GSN Joins HD Game

Channel set for Sept. 15 launch
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GSN will be launching a high def feed
on Sept. 15, when its GSN HD simulcast will go live
on satellite Galaxy 13, transponder 13.
The launch highlights the growing availability
of high def game show programming, which like other types of daytime
and syndicated programming has been slow to make the transition than
sports or prime time fare.

"Until recently not a lot of game show
programming was being done in HD," GSN Senior VP of Distribution Dennis Gillespie explained.

GSN is now producing all of its ten
original shows in high def and "some of the stuff that is coming off
network and syndication is being done in HD," Gillespie noted when
asked about the timing of the launch, which comes after most major
programmers have already begun offering HD feeds. "With all the new
programming we are doing and what is coming out way in HD [from off-network
or syndication], it made sense to do it at this time."

At launch, all of the
primetime programming will be produced in native HD and about 40% of
the overall schedule will be in high def, with the rest up-converted.

GSN moved into a new facilities about
eight months ago, which allows it to produce its new shows in HD. Gillespie
expects the proportion of HD programming on the channel to expand over
the next year as GSN continues to expand its original programming.

No distribution has been announced,
but Gillespie noted that they have
been testing the signal with several major operators. With more capacity
opening up on cable and satellite platforms for HD feeds, he expects
to rapidly gain distribution for the channel, which is currently available
in standard definition in about 73 million.

"Most operators are shooting for
100 plus HD channels and we think we will be one of those services,"
he said. 

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