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Sandy Benefit Concert Aims for 2 Billion Viewers Worldwide

The Associated Press, Wednesday, December 12, 2012, 1:31pm (PST)

Billboard -- Tonight's (Dec. 12) commercial-free benefit concert at Madison Square Garden in New York will be seen both around the world and around the World Wide Web.

The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi, The Who, Roger Waters, Billy Joel, Eric Clapton, Kanye West and many other artists will perform at the benefit to the Robin Hood Relief Fund and victims of Hurricane Sandy. The broadcast will be accessible by an estimated 2 billion people worldwide, according to the concert's website http://www.121212concert.org.

U.S. television viewers will have a difficult time missing the event. The broadcast will be carried on 34 channels, from AMC to VH1 Classic. Even pay channels HBO and Showtime 2 and the newsy Bloomberg will carry the broadcast.

But not all networks will carry the event. Fox will air a two-hour semi-final of "The X-Factor." NBC, CBS and ABC will carry on with their normal Wednesday evening schedules. The benefit concert will air on the CBS station WLNY in-TV in New York and the CW station in Philadelphia, however. A handful of local PBS stations in New York and New Jersey will also carry the broadcast.

The live webcast will be carried by 30 different websites, including YouTube, MTV.com, MySpace, Yahoo, Yahoo, Vevo, AOL, Hulu, People.com and BMI.com. The webcast will also be carried at the event's homepage, 121212concert.org.

In the U.S., free tickets to view the simulcast in movie theaters will be given away at select theaters in storm-affected areas. Simulcasts can be viewed around the country at Cinemark Theaters for the price of a regular Child admission. All of the proceeds will go toward the Robin Hood Relief Fund. A full list of broadcasters and participating theaters can be found at the concert's broadcast page http://www.121212concert.org/broadcast.

The broadcast will also be seen in countries around the world. MTV and VH1 will carry the telecast in Canada, Latin America, the U.K., France, Australia and dozens of other countries. Numerous channels will carry the concert in Japan, Korea, Tawain, India and Africa.

Social media will also play a role in raising support for relief efforts. Foursquare has created a "Be Robin Hood #121212concert" badge for users who check in using the #121212concert hashtag. Samsung Galaxy will donate $10 to the Robin Hood Relief Fund on behalf of each of the first 25,000 unlocked badges.

The Twitter hashtag #121212concert is sure to be a trending topic throughout the day. Sponsored by Chase, the hashtag on Twitter's trend section in the U.S. as well as the U.K., Mexico, Japan, Canada, Italy and many other countries.

Shazam will make it easy for its 250 million users to help. Proceeds from music purchased through the music identification app during the concert will be donated to the Robin Hood Foundation Relief Fund. Shazam users can also use the app to donate directly to the charity during the broadcast.

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Find more online: Billboard.com

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