Sarah Palin plans ‘Rogue TV’
Fox News contributor and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin will be launching her own digital video channel, tentatively called “Rogue TV,” a source familiar with the project told Capital.
The channel will be available through Tapp, the digital video service founded by former CNN chief Jon Klein and former NBC Universal entertainment executive Jeff Gaspin. Subscriptions will cost $10 per month.
Rogue is expected to launch in April or May, and it would be one of the first of the digital channels offered by Tapp.
Palin’s channel will feature video commentaries from the former Republican vice-presidential candidate, discussing current events and political issues.
“Think of it as a video version of her Facebook page,” the source said.
That said, Rogue is also expected to feature footage of Palin and her family in Alaska, much as the 2010 TLC reality series, “Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” did. (TLC’s parent company, Discovery Communications, is an investor in Tapp.)
It will also have advice and guidance from Palin, such as tips for parents and recipes. There are also tentative plans to have subscribers engage in regular video chats with Palin.
Representatives for Tapp did not respond to a request for comment on the plans.
Palin’s large social media presence (four million Facebook fans, one million Twitter followers) is probably a big factor in Tapp’s recruitment of her. She may not have a daily radio or talk show, but she clearly has loyal fans.
The New York Post reported early this week that Palin was approached by Gaspin and Klein, but that she hadn’t committed to doing the channel for Tapp. In fact, our source says, production has already started on her channel, and she has recorded a number of segments.
Palin is currently a contributor to Fox News Channel, after re-joining the cable network last June. She also hosts a reality show for The Sportsman Channel called “Amazing America.” Rogue is a different beast, however, with daily updates, focusing on more personal messages. It isn’t clear whether Rogue would affect either of Palin's existing deals.
The addition of Palin raises questions about what sort of content Tapp channels will feature.
The W.W.E. and Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze have confirmed that subscription digital-video products can be good business. But the wrestling company has decades of archival video and hours of original content each week to fill its channel, and TheBlaze has hours of original content every day, including shows hosted by people other than Glenn Beck. Both also hew to high production values in their products. In other words, successful implementations of the business model have also demonstrated a significant commitment of time from talent—and money from the backers—in the long run.
What other talent Tapp is lining up has not yet been revealed, but we hear that Tapp has been casting a wide net, seeking out both political personalities like Palin, as well as entertainment and lifestyle personalities.
The company’s website paints a picture of what to expect, with a word-cloud featuring topics like “paranormal,” “faith,” “relationships,” “fantasy sports” and “science.”