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Bebo's Kate Modern killed off - comes as shock
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Fri Jan 18, 2008 7:42 am Reply and quote this post
Users of the social networking site Bebo received a shock when Kate Modern,the iconic star of a groundbreaking web drama series, was killed off.
The story of a fictional teenage London student, revealed over 155 bite-sizedonline dramas, Kate Modern attracted 27 million views following its launchlast August.
Bebo, the online community scoured daily by millions of teenagers, funded theshow through product placement deals with partners including Microsoft andDisney.
Season one ended with a cliff-hanger when Kate (Alexandra Weaver) disappearedas a result of a suspected kidnapping by mysterious brotherhood, The Order.
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The mystery was finally revealed yesterday when the audience discovered today(weds) that she has been brutally murdered. The new series will develop intoa “whodunit”, with the characters and audience working together to solve themystery of “Who Killed Kate?” There will be a further 120 epsiodes runningdaily, lasting from one to four minutes each.
Kate Modern was created by LG15, the company behind LonelyGirl15, a fictionalweb series, which became a phenomenon on YouTube.
The Bebo series claims to be the internet’s most popular television show,averaging 1.5 million weekly views. Guest appearances by stars includingJamie Bell, the Billy Elliot actor, helped build audiences.
Kate Modern is also seen as a model for broadcasting’s digital future astelevision shows migrate to the net. Sponsors including Procter & Gamble,Paramount and Orange paid up to £250,000 each for their products to appearwithin the show.
With production costs of around £6,000 an episode, Bebo was comfortably inprofit. Product placement may become commonplace when rules are relaxed forcommercial television broadcasters later this year.
Bebo has commissioned a second online drama, called Sofia’s Diary. Aninteractive reality travel show, called The Gap Year, will be produced withEndemol, the Big Brother creator.
Rival online community MySpace is launching a partnership with the revivedHammer studio, to remake classic horror films in a web-friendly form.
Founded in 2005 as an online community, Bebo has 11 million unique users eachmonth. The core audience of 16-24 year olds spend 2.14 billion minutes onthe site per month.

Contributed by Editorial Team, Executive Management Team
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