New CBS Unit Will Chop Up Shows for the Web
- At a time when its competitors are focused on how to best distribute full-length TV shows online, CBS EyeLab represents a turn in the other direction. The content it offers will look more like videos on Google Inc.'s YouTube -- bite-size clips, streamed free, many with the feel of user-generated content -- than episodes of network prime-time shows. Quincy Smith, president of CBS Interactive, said preliminary network research shows that less than a third of CBS's Web audience is interested in watching full-length episodes of shows online.
CBS says the EyeLab-produced clips will both entertain viewers and serve a marketing purpose. "It turns our promotion into content," said George Schweitzer, the president of CBS Marketing. "The clips about 'CSI' or something from how a director shoots a scene in the show 'NUMB3RS,' these are all things that link back to our shows." The network also plans to sell ads that will be embedded in the clips.