Cable cos. shut down interactive ad venture

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NEW YORK (AP) ? The country’s largest cable TV companies are shutting down the bulk of a venture that let viewers interact with TV ads, laying off 120 employees.

Four-year-old Canoe Ventures in New York made it possible for viewers of eight cable networks, including AMC, Bravo and Discovery, to request information by mail from advertisers by pressing a button on the remote while viewing an ad. However, the technology didn’t catch on with advertisers.

The firm will keep 30 employees to work on advertising systems for video-on-demand services.

Canoe was set up by Comcast Corp., Cox Communications Inc., Time Warner Cable Inc., Charter Communications Inc., Cablevision Systems Corp. and Bright House Networks.