I can’t imagine that anyone would opt to watch the Super Bowl online, and not on television, but CBS is petitioning the NFL to get them to add the game on the web. According to Business Week, NBC’s online streaming of Sunday Night Football is going to used as a template….

A big attraction for advertisers: Fans generally want to watch sporting events in real time, rather than storing them on digital video-recording services like TiVo (TIVO). While streaming viewers for other types of content chafe at watching online ads, says Screen Digest’s Amel, sports sites can jam them into timeouts with little or no backlash.

And online streaming may come yet to the granddaddy of sports events, the Super Bowl. CBS hopes to entice the NFL to allow it to stream the game in February, when the network has the rights to telecast it from Miami, according to Smith. The NFL hasn’t said yes, although it claims a success last year when it jointly streamed 17 games online with NBC as a test. The online streaming, which numbered in the millions, didn’t cannibalize TV viewing of the Sunday night games, says Brian Rolapp, the NFL’s senior vice-president for media strategy. He says 80% of viewers turned to the streams to complement TV watching, as the Internet version offered four alternative camera angles to supplement NBC’s primary picture.

Rolapp says the league hasn’t decided whether to stream games again this year, and would be open to discussing CBS’s Super Bowl request. Says CBS’s Smith: “They may say no. But there’s night watchmen out there who can’t get to a Super Bowl party.”

I don’t know if anyone saw CBS’ online stream of the Masters, but it was by far the most amazing video quality, I’ve ever seen online. Again, I think the Super Bowl might not garner that many online viewers, but it’s certainly worth a try.

CBS Cleans Up on the Sports Fans (Business Week)

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