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USA and WWE, a Tag Team Again

And it's a really cheap way to program a network.

The former vice president joined investors yesterday at the National Cable & Telecommunications Association's confab in San Francisco to announce the creation of Current, targeting young viewers with news, culture and viewer-produced video, the AP said.

Gore headed an investment group that bought the network from Vivendi Universal for an undisclosed amount in May, Reuters noted in its coverage of the event.

Current is scheduled to launch Aug. 1 and will initially be available in 19 million cable-subscriber homes. The network will target viewers ages 18 to 34; Gore said the venture was dedicated to giving young people a voice, the AP reported. Because 18- to 34-year-olds just don't have enough voice on cable TV? Kind of like how PBS gives voice to those who can't get their voice heard on other networks -- like Tucker Carlson.

Anyway, Gore said this voice-giving would be accomplished with a blend of interactivity and populism, the AP reported. Don't you wish you'd been there -- I know I do. Gore indicated his commitment to the Web model by wearing a charcoal-gray suit and no tie -- the official special-occasion uniform of dot-commers.

"We're about empowering this generation . . . to engage in the dialogue of democracy and tell the story of what's going on in their lives in the dominant media of our time," the 57-year-old Gore said, according to the AP.

Central to his strategy is "inviting Current's viewers to supply their own video content" -- videos that eventually will comprise more than half of the programming, the AP said.

Where I come from that's called "cheap labor." Current will provide tools, made available on its Web site.

More traditional shows will be developed for Current under president of programming David Neuman. You may remember him from his days at CNN, or Disney. The channel also has established a partnership with Google, which will provide twice-an-hour updates on viewers' top Internet searches.

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