CBS will webcast episodes of CSI trilogy

TV Academy members can expect three fewer Emmy screeners in the mail this year: CBS and its sib CBS Paramount Network TV studio will instead stream episodes of “CSI,” “CSI: Miami” and “CSI: New York” online.

Emmy “for your consideration” print ads for all three shows will feature Web addresses for voters to view key segs from the “CSI” trilogy this season, which have been posted on CBS.com.

“We felt like a lot of times there are so many mailers that it creates clutter,” said CBS Par communications VP Lauri Metrose. “It’s a different way of getting people to view our product.”

The site also includes highlight reels from “CSI” (and its spinoffs) thesps such as William Petersen, David Caruso and Melina Kanakaredes.

CBS is making no effort to shield the episodes from non-Emmy voters; any Web surfer who clicks onto the CBS.com site can stream the segs.

“We wanted to have easy access to get people to watch the shows, and not put up too many roadblocks,” Metrose said.

The episodes will be up on the site through the Emmy voting period, which ends on June 20. CBS communications VP Phil Gonzales said it’s too soon to tell whether more Emmy screeners will migrate to the Internet, perhaps making tapes and DVDs obsolete (saving studios and webs a chunk of Emmy promo money).

“We felt it was the right time to try it with these shows,” Gonzales said.

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