Thursday, March 15, 2012 at 3:48 pm.

Glenn Beck’s web TV network now has more than 300,000 subscribers

Christopher Stewart for the WSJ: (behind paywall)

On Fox News, Mr. Beck averaged 2.2 million daily viewers and was paid $2.5 million a year. GBTV, which jumped on the scene in September, is expected to bring in at least $40 million in revenue this year, supported by advertising and more than 300,000 subscribers paying as much as $9.95 a month for full access to GBTV, according to a person close to the company. While it is significantly smaller than his audience at Fox News, it’s still more than an established network like CNBC, which drew an average of 189,000 viewers over the course of the total day in February, according to Nielsen.

Love Glenn Beck or hate him, you have to appreciate his bold move to push the limits on the future of TV. This direct-to-consumer model won’t work for everyone — I’ve long wondered if Conan could have been successful starting his own online TV network — but for someone with a fanatic viewer base like Beck, it’s apparently viable. (Although “more than 300,000 subscribers” today isn’t absurdly huge growth from its launch ~6 months ago, when it had “more than 230,000″ subscribers, according to the WSJ.)

Btw, this is another behind-the-scenes tech win for MLB Advanced Media, which powers GBTV’s video. For baseball and beyond, MLB.com is quietly one of the most important companies building the future of TV.