CBS Adds YouTube For March Madness

    March 15, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

Before being split into two companies that essentially represented broadcast and cable, CBS resided under Viacom’s corporate umbrella.

If anyone at CBS was bothered by entering into an agreement with Google to place men’s college basketball clips and highlights on YouTube in the wake of Viacom’s lawsuit against the web companies, it isn’t reflected in an announcement made this morning.

CBS has been aggressive at moving into the digital realm, between a broadband-first approach to news and the placement of video online and with Google’s properties like Video Search and YouTube. Today’s announcement plays on the immense interest people have in the NCAA tournament, otherwise known by CBS’ trademark of March Madness.

CBS Sports, the NCAA, and long-time March Madness sponsor Pontiac will drop the Tournament Channel onto YouTube. They not only plan to make content available on an outlet that has angered Sumner Redstone and other media moguls, they believe they can profit from it:

"Through this agreement, CBS is monetizing its content on the Internet and proving that world-class programming can help bring brand-name advertisers to online platforms," said Sean McManus, President, CBS Sports and News. "This year, CBS Sports and YouTube will expand on the success of March Madness on Demand reaching sports fans everywhere, on all levels across all media, making the fan the real winner as we enter this Tournament."

"The NCAA continues to look for new and creative avenues to promote and enhance the game of college basketball and the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship," said Greg Shaheen, NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball and Business Strategies. "YouTube will allow both the NCAA and CBS to reach a broader audience and will provide increased exposure for the men’s basketball championship."

The first video appearing on the YouTube channel displays the UPS logo on multiple screens; they simply cannot be missed by the viewer. Why Viacom misses the potential of YouTube while their former brethren at CBS embrace it would be a question we would like to see Viacom answer if their YouTube/Google lawsuit ever comes to trial.