Tag Archives: V Média

Viceland channel to launch French-language sister

Viceland, the Rogers-owned TV channel carrying content from millennial magnet Vice Media, is still in (extended) free previews, but already there’s news of a French-language equivalent.

Vice announced deals in several markets including Australia and India. One of them is a deal with Groupe V Média in Quebec, the owner of the V television network and MusiquePlus and MusiMax, which it picked up from the Bell-Astral merger.

The press release is low on details, but does say there will be a French-language Viceland channel in the mix, along with a new TV studio, “an entity specializing in content marketing as well as the development of international distribution agreements.”

According to Guylaine O’Farrell, V’s general manager of communications and marketing, Vice content will air on V’s existing channels, and the Viceland channel is being planned for sometime in 2017. Asked if this is going to be a new channel or the rebranding of an existing one (Rogers rebranded The Biography Channel to create Viceland, and V is expected to do something drastic with MusiMax), she said that adding it as a new specialty channel “is what is foreseen for the moment.”

Financial details were not disclosed. Rogers’s content deal with Vice was worth $100 million when it was announced in 2014.

Vice has already started producing some content in French. There’s a French version of its daily Vice du jour digital newscast, and it has a bureau in Montreal (where Vice was founded as a magazine in 1994). But it’s unclear how much of Viceland en français’s programming will be original content from Quebec and how much of it will be translated content from English Canada and the rest of the world.

It’s probably a coincidence, but this announcement came the same day the CRTC approved an application by Rogers to sell a 29.9% stake in Viceland to Vice. (Vice has the option of increasing its stake up to 49%.) The price of the sale was not disclosed.

V buys 25Stanley.com, giving it increased legitimacy

25Stanley, the sports website best known for spreading gossip about the Canadiens, has been bought by V Média, owners of V, MusiquePlus and Musimax, the latter announced today, followed by the former.

The purchase price was not disclosed. Founder Jean Trudel (JT Utah) will remain with the website, and promises “business as usual.”

25Stanley is a popular website, and its articles are a mix of regular sporting news, particularly about the Canadiens, the kinds of fun little clickbaity stories you’d find on BuzzFeed, Deadspin or BarDown, and TMZ-style gossip about sports personalities.

It’s the latter that has led to the website being dismissed with a sneer as an unreliable gossip site by more mainstream media, even though many stories have been broken there.

Mind you, going through recent posts, a lot of the off-ice gossip isn’t much more than reposting Instagram photos. Last month, it posted a “rumour” about Carey Price’s wife being pregnant. It got lots of traction online but the mainstream media didn’t tough it until it was reported by TSN’s John Lu on Twitter after a game four days later.

When Angela Price got mad that she’d been scooped on news about her own uterus, 25Stanley apologized.

Being acquired by V gives the site some professionals to work with on everything from PR to IT. It also fits in with V’s positioning as a media empire for Quebec’s youth. Expect crossovers in both directions as a result of this deal.

You have to wonder if this might result in the website softening its image, becoming less like the National Enquirer and more like People. Or if in some ways that’s already happened.

But 25Stanley can’t simply be dismissed as some nameless online rumour mill. It has a major media company behind it now, and will be taken more seriously as a result.