Viewers flock to Paralympics coverage

An estimated 5.3 million people tuned into at least part of CBC Television’s coverage of the first three days of the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, the public broadcaster said this week. The CBC-led Canadian Paralympic Committee Broadcast and Digital Media Consortium is airing 90 hours of TV broadcast and 250 hours of digital streaming […]

An estimated 5.3 million people tuned into at least part of CBC Television’s coverage of the first three days of the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, the public broadcaster said this week.

The CBC-led Canadian Paralympic Committee Broadcast and Digital Media Consortium is airing 90 hours of TV broadcast and 250 hours of digital streaming coverage of the Paralympics, which run through this Sunday.

Sportsnet and Accessible Media Inc. are also partnering with CBC on broadcast coverage, while Yahoo Sports Canada and Victoria-based SendtoNews are providing additional coverage.

In a separate release, SendtoNews, which packages sports highlights, player interviews and other fan-interest content for both online and broadcast distribution, said that its News Partnership Network delivered 7.6 and 3.8 million broadcast impressions via CTV and Global Television respectively through the first days of competition.

The News Partnership Network is comprised of leading national, regional and local sports broadcasters and online publishers (partners include AOL, FOX, Postmedia, Hearst Corporation and The McClatchy Company) that provide guaranteed content distribution in exchange for a share of ad revenues.

The four-year-old SendtoNews, which owns short-form rights to several marquee sports properties including the PGA Tour, NASCAR, and the NFL in Canada, is making athlete interviews and competition footage available in the immediate aftermath of key Paralympics events, including the closing ceremonies.

SendtoNews has about 32 million active viewers per month for its various digital streams – which include newspaper websites and purely digital companies. None of its content is available via online ad networks. “We believe in owning the relationship between the brand, the advertising agency and the sponsor, to grow the value of our content rights over time,” said CEO Greg Bobolo.

Canadian Olympic Committee sponsors, including CIBC, are among SendtoNews’ advertising partners for its Paralympic coverage, with their logo laid atop the SendtoNews video package. “It’s a pretty impressive ad unit, because it almost looks like they own that Sochi content,” said Bobolo.

The Consortium is making 90 hours of TV coverage and more than 250 hours of digital streaming available across its various platforms, including four separate venue feeds offering live streaming of alpine and Nordic skiing, sledge hockey and curling. CBC News Network, as well as local CBC News programs and CBC Radio are also providing daily competition updates.

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