Watchitoo Powers Animal Planet's Interactive Live After-Show of "Whale Wars: Viking Shores"
- Leading Video Streaming Company Watchitoo Selected by Animal Planet to Broadcast Discussion About Whaling in the Faroe Islands -
New York, NY - April 30, 2012 -Watchitoo (www.watchitoo.com), the interactive SaaS-based company that provides professional HD video collaboration and streaming technologies, announced today that it has been selected by Animal Planet to power its after-show discussion for the new mini-series Whale Wars: Viking Shores. The discussion will be between Captain Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and Heri Joensen, Faroese native and lead singer of the international band Týr. The live whaling discussion powered by Watchitoo will air on Animal Planet's website (www.animalplanet.com) and Facebook page on May 4th at 10 PM (ET) just after the second episode of WHALE WARS: VIKING SHORES.
WHALE WARS: VIKING SHORES, a new five-part series, documents "Operation Ferocious Islands," Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's whale defense campaign as they set sail to end the ancient tradition known as "The Grind" - Faroese for "whale drive" - that takes place every summer. For the first time in the history of the WHALE WARS saga, the Sea Shepherds are not only at sea but also deploying a covert team to patrol the streets, interact with locals and carry out undercover missions. Each one-hour episode follows the Sea Shepherd's land-air-sea campaign led by Paul Watson as they try to find the whales before the locals do. A hunt can happen at any moment, and the Sea Shepherds are vastly outnumbered in a new kind of face-to-face battle.
For 30 years, Captain Paul Watson has been at the helm of the world's most active marine protection nonprofit organization - Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Paul Watson's career as a master mariner began in 1968 as a seaman with the Merchant Marines and with the Canadian Coast Guard. In 1972, Watson was a co-founder of the Greenpeace Foundation in Vancouver, British Columbia. In 1977, Watson founded Sea Shepherd Conservation Society - dedicated to research, investigation and the enforcement of laws, treaties, resolutions and regulations established to protect marine wildlife and their habitats worldwide. Since then, Watson has traveled and lectured extensively at universities and events around the world, including Pasadena College of Design and UCLA. He has authored six books and has been the subject of numerous magazine articles and profiles including being chosen by Time Magazine as one of the environmental heroes of the 20th century in the year 2000.
Heri Joensen is a vocalist, songwriter and guitarist from the Faroe Islands. Since 1998, he has fronted the Viking metal band Týr, writing the greater part of all music and fuelling this band of Northern brothers with boundless energy. He was born in the Faroe capital Tórshavn in 1973 but grew up in a village consisting of only two houses with a spectacular view of saga-drenched islands. At the age of 14, Heri began playing guitar and at 17 started playing in local bands. Like so many talented Faroese, Heri moved to Denmark for further education. There he met up with former band mate Kári Streymoy and formed Týr. Since finishing his education and moving back to the Faroe Islands, his career as front man of Týr has taken great flight to international stardom. Heri writes nearly all the songs himself and draws heavily on Faroese tradition for both music and lyrics.
"Watchitoo enables us to extend the debate around whaling onto the web and beyond the show, letting the opposing sides air their opinions to this deeply debated topic," said Iain Langridge, vice president of Animal Planet.com and Petfinder. "This is the first time WHALE WARS web fans will get a chance to hear directly from Paul Watson as well as the opposing views of the Faroese people represented by Heri Joensen."
Watchitoo is used by networks and businesses around the globe to broadcast live shows, Q & A sessions, business presentations or lectures, enabling people to dynamically interact with any viewer in their audience through HD video chat, social sharing and text chat. With one click of the mouse, a meeting host can drag a user out of the audience and bring them into a virtual green room before entering the live stream to collaborate or answer questions, while the remaining audience members are following along in real time. Any viewer can become a participant, and any meeting participant can be switched back to a general viewer.
"We are thrilled to be selected by Animal Planet to provide the technology to broadcast this thought provoking after show discussion," said Rony Zarom, CEO of Watchitoo. "Our platform will enable the Whale Wars fans and communities around the world to view, participate and engage in this uniquely immersive and interactive broadcast experience."
About Animal Planet
Animal Planet Media (APM), a multi-media business unit of Discovery Communications, is the world's only entertainment brand that immerses viewers in the full range of life in the animal kingdom with rich, deep content via multiple platforms and offers animal lovers and pet owners access to a centralized online, television and mobile community for immersive, engaging, high-quality entertainment, information and enrichment. APM consists of the Animal Planet television network, available in more than 96 million homes in the US; online assets www.animalplanet.com, the ultimate online destination for all things animal; the 24/7 broadband channel, Animal Planet Beyond; Petfinder.com, the #1 pet-related Web property globally that facilitates pet adoption; and other media platforms including a robust Video-on-Demand (VOD) service; mobile content; and merchandising extensions.
New York-based Watchitoo provides an embeddable video collaboration platform to deliver live content in a highly engaging way. The Watchitoo platform allows multiple participants to see and hear one another in real-time, collaborate around any form of rich media, and be viewed by an audience scalable into the thousands. With Watchitoo, any viewer can become a participant and any participant can be switched back to a general viewer. For more information, visit www.watchitoo.com.