With Content Deals, Vice Faces Challenge

By Mark Joyella Comment

The New York Times reports Vice, fresh off a round of major deals with HBO and A&E Networks, faces a challenge: keeping its edge while delivering huge amounts of content.

Vice CEO Shane Smith told the Times part of the challenge will be working within the existing world of cable television:

For years, Mr. Smith has criticized traditional TV, calling it slow and unable to draw younger viewers. But if all the deals Vice has struck are to work out, Mr. Smith may have to play more by the rules of traditional media. James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch’s son and a member of Vice’s board, was at the company’s presentation on Friday, as were other top media executives.

“They know they need people like me to help them, but they can’t get out of their own way,” Mr. Smith said in the interview Friday. “My only real frustration is we’re used to being incredibly dynamic, and they’re not incredibly dynamic.”

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