The Internet is really feeling like the fifth TV network these days, with the line blurring between producing content for television and the Web. For a while now, the Internet has had its own production companies like NextNew Networks and 60Frames to develop unique online “shows.”
On Thursday Net TV got another online production company, one with pedigree. Miles Beckett and Greg Goodfried, the ones behind Web hits Lonelygirl 15 and spin-off KateModern, secured $5 million in Series A venture funding to launch Eqal, their new “social entertainment” production company, which supplants an earlier effort known as LG15 Studios/Telegraph Ave. Productions.
Eqal — pronounced “Equal” — join the likes of Joss Whedon’s Mutant Enemy and Bryan Singer’s Bad Hat Harry Productions as independent production houses, only Eqal produces for the Web, not for television or film.
“It’s an exciting time for online entertainment,” Beckett and Goodfried wrote on the company blog. “There are a slew of independent producers, digital studios, and social media companies sprouting up, not to mention the fact that traditional media isn’t exactly ignoring this whole ‘internets’ thing. . . .
“After six months of fast food and airplane delays, we found a VC that shared our vision to build a company that would produce truly interactive shows. Many of the exciting innovations we’ve all talked about will finally come to fruition now that we have the funding to act on our shared vision.”
While Beckett and Goodfried have not released definitive details about what they’re going to do with that $5 million, you can bet they’ll continue developing the social networking aspects of their current site lonelygirl15.com.
On the one hand, let’s hope they are able to venture into uncharted territory for television of any sort and social networking, extending the relationship between the two.
On the other hand, let’s hope they come up with more compelling content like Lonelygirl and KateModern because without the content, the social networking community will be a ghost town.
As Beckett and Goodfried remind us, “Who’d have thought a video series co-starring a purple monkey puppet would come so far?”