Showtime NEW YORK — While pay-per-view for fights have long been a staple of cable operators and satellite networks, it is very new for online publishers.

In what we understand to be a first for a premium entertainment network, Showtime will stream Strike Force, All Access, a mixed martial arts bout tomorrow, Saturday, April 11 at 10 p.m. ET.

Fans will be able to make predictions, comment on live fights, discuss outcomes and even talk some smack with All Access through the fight’s Facebook page. Showtime is using Facebook Connect for the integration and is charging $24.95 for the experience.

The first big integration of live video on the social network was the CNN/Facebook Presidential Inauguration.

Live video on Facebook is increasing as reported by Caroline McCarthy at CNET News.com earlier this week on Justin.tv’s new integration with Facebook and other social media sites.

Other forms of Interactivity for Fight Watchers

Subscribers to to Webcast can toggle between five live cameras surrounding the cage with full pause and rewind capabilities. Audio tracks will include the SHOWTIME telecast fight call by Gus Johnson, Mauro Ranallo and Pat Miletich, and the corresponding audio to the selected camera.

This morning, I spoke with Showtime’s digital media GM Robert Hayes. He spoke about the opportunity for live, paid events and the value of Facebook. He told me that “Dexter” has 600,000 registered fans on the social network.

This is one of several interviews we will publish from our meeting with him.

Congrats to Perry Wu and the crew at BitGravity who are handling the content delivery support of tomorrow’s live event.

— Andy Plesser, Executive Producer

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