April 18, 2009

MTV eyeing socially conscious image

MTV General Manager Stephen Friedman says the U.S. cable network is attempting to alter its glossy persona into a more socially conscious image.

Friedman said new MTV programming will reflect the network's attempt to cater to millennials, those born between 1980 and 2000, The New York Times reported Saturday.

Friedman said the planned change in programming came about as the result of an MTV executives meeting last fall that focused on how to combat the network's declining ratings.

It was very clear we were at one of those transformational moments, when this new generation of millennials were demanding a new MTV, he said.

Friedman said with U.S. President Barack Obama in office and the U.S. economy in downturn, network executives decided to have MTV programming embrace the idea of community.

The Times said included in that new programming will be The Buried Life, a reality TV series about four friends who travel the country to accomplish various goals, all the while stopping at various points to make strangers' wishes come true.