Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Participant Media to Shut Down Its Pivot TV Channel

After only three years in existence, Participant Media has decided to shut down its cable channel Pivot. The channel is expected to go dark sometime before the end of 2016.

Participant's decision to end the network comes as David Linde was tapped to serve as the new CEO in late 2015. In its three years as a channel, Pivot started as an ambitious provider of original content under president Evan Shapiro. But things shifted to a reliance on acquisitions following the 2014 executive shuffle that put Kent Rees in as general manager.

"As the media landscape changes, we have been evaluating how we fulfill our mission to entertain and inspire social action around the world's most pressing issues," said Linde. "That process has led us to the decision to move away from owning and operating a cable network. While this conclusion was not an easy one, it is ultimately in the best interest of all our stakeholders, and allows us to allocate more resources toward the production of compelling content across all platforms."

Pivot was home to syndicated repeats for shows such as Veronica Mars, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Farscape and Friday Night Lights.

The channel's original programming included shows such as Joseph Gordon-Levitt's variety show HitRecord on TV, Meghan McCain's talk show Raising McCain, and reality shows Secret Lives of Americans and The American Dream Project.

Pivot also saw success with two critically-acclaimed original series - Please Like Me and Fortitude. Both series are co-productions with Please Like Me coming from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Fortitude coming from Sky Atlantic. Please Like Me was slated to return for its fourth season on the network on November 10 while Fortitude was set to begin its second season in January 2017. It's currently unclear how today's news about Pivot will effect these two series - as well as the other original programming at the network.