Comedy Central, encouraged by the response to the downloads of their shows on iTunes is taking the next step, and debuting a series on their own broadband channel, MotherLoad, a few months prior to its debut on their linear channel.
The show is a stand-up comedian showcase called Live at Gotham, and it looks like they will record a show one night, and premiere it the next day. Much like rock artists who offer CDs of the show you just attended as you walk out of it.
While Comedy Central’s MotherLoad isn’t a download service, but rather streaming with commercial, this is still a smart idea, because no doubt the popularity of things The Daily Show, The Colbert Report and the eternal South Park, among others, means that every time there is a buzz episode of those shows, they get a ton of traffic. So why not try to create a new hit show with that traffic?
It seems to be a pretty smart strategy: MotherLoad for those who just want to stream and watch and/or iTunes for those want to download and own. And since the multiple broadcasts that cable offers were probably one of the first cracks in the “window” — timeshifing offered by the source of the programmers themselves (and yes I know that it means that they don’t have to create as much content that way, but it also means more choice for me and, presumeably, higher quality from the programmer) — they seem to be on the leading tip of smashing it completely.