November 13, 1997: VIBe Hosted by Sinbad, The First Late Night Talk Show to Go Live Online
While setting up for CyberDive on Friday, Lee received a call from Sinbad asking if he could attend a production meeting the following Monday at CBS Television City in Los Angeles. Sinbad explained that he was taking over as host of a late night talk show called VIBe and he wanted to go live online from the set during rehearsals and throughout the taping of the show in front of a live audience.
Attending the meeting were executives from Quincy Jones Productions and Columbia TriStar Television. Sinbad explained his idea and introduced our executive producer as having just done this over the weekend from underwater. Certainly it was possible to do it from a television studio!
Roth served as the technical consultant defining the specifications for hardware and software, installing a laptop on Sinbad’s desk and two workstations backstage. He then served as the moderator for the show’s chat rooms for the first several weeks of the project. Roth’s responsibilities included logging into the chat rooms at 10 a.m. each day and chatting with the fans through rehearsals leading up to and during that night’s show.
During the taping of each show, as he led out to and from commercial breaks, Sinbad would jump into the chat rooms while on camera and greet his online fans by name. Whenever someone questioned the validity of our claims to be live from the set during the day, the following day would see the biggest former detractors become the biggest evangelists for what we were doing!
Having started her “Internet Mondays” one week earlier, Rosie O’Donnell led us to clarify our claim, not to be the first talk show to go live online, but The First Late Night Talk Show To Go Live Online.
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