YouTube gets NCAA games

The video-sharing site is among those streaming video, but the companies involved didn't promote the relationship much. Why the big secret?

March Madness on Demand
CBSSports.com

Add YouTube to the list of Web sites offering visitors live streaming video of NCAA Division I men's tournament games.

The Google-owned video site quietly began streaming college basketball games on Thursday via a feed from CBS (parent company of CNET News).

I don't understand why CBS wouldn't have promoted this more in order to take full advantage of YouTube's enormous audience. YouTube, by far the Web's largest video site, recently said more than 100 million U.S. visitors log on to the site. YouTube didn't do a lot of press prior to Thursday's tip-off either. Is there more going on here?

When I contacted YouTube, all they would say was: "This is a program that we are running with one of our long standing partners around popular premium content. We're excited that the YouTube community will have the opportunity to watch March Madness on YouTube and look forward to hearing from them about their experience."

CBS, which declined to comment for this story, has been a big booster of YouTube and all of the company's content partners for a long time. But CBS now owns a YouTube competitor in TV.com.

CBS' streaming video of the tournament, however, can be seen on a host of sites, such as ESPN, AOL, Yahoo and Sports Illustrated's Web site, SI.com. Some of those sites compete with CBS as well.

The company has long had a syndication strategy and distributes content on numerous platforms.

 

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