US TV network CBS has attributed a boost in viewing figures to a content-sharing joint venture with YouTube.

The broadcaster announced its Late Show with David Letterman had added 200,000 new viewers (5%) and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson was up by 100,000 (7%) since it launched the CBS Brand Channel on the video website in mid-October.

CBS Interactive president Quincy Smith said the channel, one of several themed YouTube areas to publish clips, had been viewed 29.2 million times since the site was launched on the video website in mid-October, averaging 857,000 views each day.

"What’s most exciting here is the extent to which CBS is learning about its audience as never before," Smith said in a statement. "We believe this inflection point is the precursor to many exciting developments as we continue to build bridges rather than construct walls."

CBS' stance regarding Google's latest acquisition is one of a divergent range of strategies adopted by traditional media players in response to YouTube's phenomenal growth and to increasing concern over copyright abuses.

Comedy Central recently ordered the site to remove all clips of its shows, despite the widespread belief YouTube has driven viewers to the likes of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.


Published 23 November, 2006 by Robert Andrews

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