by Gavin O'Malley, August 19th, 2013
Not content with its current video output, NBC News Digital Group has assembled an in-house production team to create streaming media specifically for social, mobile and Web viewers.
The suitably named Original Video Unit will be tasked with creating video for various brands across the NBC News Digital Group, including NBC News Digital and Today Digital. “We will now have an additional focus on original video that extends the news division’s on-air and digital brands,” Vivian Schiller, senior vice president and chief digital officer of NBC News, said on Monday.
The Original Video Unit will focus on creating branded video series, extending NBC News' high-quality storytelling across digital platforms with an emphasis on mobile and social audiences. The digital video franchises will feature journalists from across NBC News’ shows and platforms.
Bill Smee -- previously executive producer Slate.com's video arm Slate V -- has been tapped to lead the new team as executive producer of original video production. He is expected to join NBC News in September.
Gregory Gittrich, vice president of news and product for NBC News Digital and executive editor of NBCNews.com, said it’s increasingly important to entertain, as well as inform audiences. The new unit, he said, “will share important, unique and undiscovered stories while entertaining our audience."
Last week, NBC News acquired Stringwire, a start-up that develops real-time mobile video-sharing software. Upon the news, Schiller told Online Media Daily that consumers could expect a Stringwire-supported NBC News-branded product sometime next year.
Before joining Slate, Smee spent 20 years in television news and documentary as a producer and network executive at CNN and the Discovery Times Channel.
The NBC News Digital Group encompasses NBCNews.com, msnbc.com, TODAY.com, theGrio.com, NBCLatino.com, NBCPolitics.com, iVillage, Nightly News, Meet the Press, Dateline, Newsvine, Breaking News, and each brands’ apps and digital extensions.