CBS, YouTube Team Up for March Madness

Mar 15, 2007  •  Post A Comment

NCAA March Madness comes to YouTube as a “channel” that offers game clips uploaded in near real time.

Pontiac sponsors the CBS Sports NCAA Tournament Channel (www.youtube.com/cbsncaatourney) starts with today’s opening rounds of the quest for the college basketball championship.

The announcement Thursday is followed by the news that CBS sister company Viacom is suing YouTube and Google for $1 billion, charging copyright infringement.

“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,” CBS Sports and News President Sean McManus said. He said “the fan [is] 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 VP 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.”

In addition to game highlights, and links to related sites, the channel will offer press conferences and a variety of video produced by CBS Sports, CBS SportsLine and CSTV surrounding coverage of the tournament, as well as giving users a chance to interact with each other.

YouTube users can vote on their favorite round-by-round Pontiac “Game Changing Performances” at NCAASports.com. The team reviving the most votes will be announced live on CBS during halftime of the NCAA championship game on Monday, April 2. The winning team’s school will receive a $100,000 general scholarship.

“The NCAA Tournament is consistently one of the most exciting experiences in all of sports,” said Suzie Reider, head of advertising sales for YouTube. “We’re hopeful this partnership will also introduce the tournament and NCAA basketball to an even wider audience than it already enjoys.”

“Traditional media working with new media is better for the fans and better for us,” said Mark-Hans Richer, Pontiac marketing director.

(Editor: Worrell)