You won’t have to watch CBS to see the network’s coverage of the Republican and Democratic national conventions.
CBS News and Twitter said Monday they had entered a partnership to stream live coverage of both events. Users of the popular social-media network will be able to watch Josh Elliott, Elaine Quijano, and Vladimir Duthiers as they hold forth on CBSN, the company’s free broadband-delivered video news service and anchor coverage from convention halls in both cities.
The partnership builds upon previous efforts by the two companies. Twitter and CBS News during the network’s coverage of the Democratic presidential debate on Nov. 14, 2015 and the Republican presidential debate on Feb. 13, 2016 included real time metrics, curated tweets, and live questions tweeted by voters and asked of the candidates.
The partnership serves as the most recent example of traditional TV-news outlets working to keep their product in the minds of a new generation of viewers that turns immediately to social-media to get updates about breaking-news events. A recent study by Pew Research Center determined that 81% of Americans get news through websites, apps or social networking sites. Among those who get news both on desktop computers and mobile devices, more than half prefer mobile.
The pact further illumines both companies’ ambitions. Twitter has in the recent past signed a deal with the National Football League to transmit a package of Thursday-night football games via its service – another signal the company is turning to streaming video to attract a wider crowd of users and get them to stay with the service for longer periods of time. CBS News executives, meanwhile, have articulated big goals for CBSN, hoping to have it serve as something akin to a CNN without the massive fixed costs of operating a cable network.