KSTP-TV to offer customized newscasts via Web

ST. PAUL -- KSTP-TV on Friday announced a new feature on its Internet site that will make Web surfers their own TV news directors, able to pick some stories, ignore others, and then watch a custom-built newscast anytime they choose.

Starting today, the "5Cast" feature will let users see computer-video versions of stories previously aired on KSTP newscasts. They will select only the stories that interest them, then string them together into customized Webcasts that stream onto their PC screens.

It's a homegrown service, using computer hardware and software developed by DayPort, a 10-person Mankato company, which developed a similar system that's already operating at KEYC-TV in Mankato.

While streaming video news isn't new, customized Webcasts are, said Al Tompkins, broadcast and online group leader for the Poynter Institute, a journalism think tank and school in Florida.

"It's another way to make news easier for the viewer to use," Tompkins said.

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