CBS Will Finally Let Some Shows be Shown on Netflix

Posted by at 2:40 pm on February 22, 2011

CBS today in a rare move showed willingness to bring its TV shows to a subscription Internet service today and gave Netflix some key content. Classic shows such as Cheers, Star Trek and Twin Peaks will now be viewable through a streaming plan, as will two newer shows, Flashpoint and Medium. The non-exclusive deal lasts for two years and has an option for a two-year renewal.

“This deal recognizes the increasing value of our content in today’s marketplace,” said Scott Koondel, President of Distribution, CBS Television Distribution. “More and more, people want to be able to access our programming on a wide variety of platforms. We are very pleased that the titles offered through this deal will now also be made available to a whole new community through the terrific and convenient service that Netflix offers. We will continue to pursue additional non-exclusive distribution partners that are additive to our overall business.”

CBS has been willing to sell episode downloads through stores such like iTunes but has been reluctant to see any of its video go beyond its own website. The studio is the one holdout from Hulu after ABC/Disney, Fox and NBC all either helped start the site or put contain on it.

For Netflix, this follows a deal with ABC/Disney in December and is part of plan to make Internet streaming a core feature. Netflix is estimated to have over 20,000 movies and TV shows to watch, which still far from the number it offers thru physical rentals.

The shows wil start to appear on Netflix in early April for at least two-year in this non-exclusive licensing agreement. CBS retains an option to extend the agreement for up to two additional years

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