While the data on how many viewers are watching TV and surfing the web simultaneously has been a little thin the past few years, CBS Interactive (NYSE: CBS) feels it has little to lose with a new service that aims to capture those viewers doing both. Its new Social Viewing Room service will encourage users to watch shows on TV, find like-minded fans and participate in chats around a particular program. This is something that MTV Networks (NYSE: VIA) has pursued for awhile, with shows like The Hills. But CBS, which has historically attracted the oldest audiences of the major broadcasters, has been a little late to the game. At the launch, there are about a dozen shows in the Social Viewing Room. As part of a promotional campaign around CBS' new service, Intel (NSDQ: INTC) is having its brand "weaved" into the room's content, which are grouped into three channelsprimetime, daytime and CBS Classics. Release
-- THR: If the Social Viewing Room attracts enough participants, CBS expects to expand the model to such other CBS Corp. divisions, such as the CW and Showtime.
By David Kaplan