Media Production

CBS Launches a New Idea for Online Video

CBS is taking a completely different approach from the other networks to online video. Thinking that people actually aren’t interested in watching full-length episodes of their favorite shows on computers, they’re launching a new portal called “EyeLab.” Instead of CBS shows, EyeLab will be showing shorter clips – behind the scenes videos, interviews with stars, etc.

It’s a really novel approach and I have to applaud their thinking. It may only work during the transitional period as people get used to seeing full-length entertainment on their computers and digital devices, but I’m curious to see how it catches on with the public. I’m wondering about how the concept could work with religious programmers.

Do people really want to see a full-length program from Joyce Meyer, Joel Osteen, or others? Or would they prefer behind the scenes interviews with Joyce, or short ministry updates, devotional pieces, or short films? Interesting implications…

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  1. For me the key thing AT THE MOMENT is to use the web to add value to all your other forms of media outreach. I don't think that there is any doubt that in the Western World the Web will ultimately have a major impact on TV – though I would urge everyone not to just think of the west – for example in India where there are over 1 billion people MANY still don't have access to TV let alone the web and TV will be here to stay as a tool to reach them for many years to come. However what we have to do is start migrating our viewers to the internet and for me the best way of doing that is a mixture of both long form content (why not have all of Joyce's library available on-line) and stuff that you can't get through more traditional TV – such as short devotional spots, behind the scene interviews – or even extensions of other programme, for example where Joyce now has interviews on her programmes which I would imagine are edited for time – why not put the whole interview on-line. What we need to do is come up with creative strategies that enable us to use all forms of media outlets coherently and in a way that is appropriate and draws viewers and consumers into a deeper connected relationship with the ministries concerned – so for me I'd do both short and long form material – but always look at ways of adding value to the relationship we have with the consumers of our content.

  2. This is sorta like what good podcasts do. For instance, The Official Adventures in Odyssey Podcast ( has bloopers, Q&A with the producers, actor interviews, etc. that supplement the show rather than just "port" Adventures in Odyssey over to the internet.

    Seems to be working: this Focus on the Family podcast is typically in the Top 5 of iTunes Kids & Family, and has barely left the Top 10 of that chart.

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