Originally Posted on Forbes

“Hear ye, hear ye, read all about it.” This phrase has been hawked loudly for well over 100 years to alert the public to big news (or sometimes not so big). “Extra, extra, read all about it”, is the same basic idea. Historically the content industry has promoted its stories and shows to encourage the public to check them out.

The Web and our digital services all seem to have notifications, alerts, promotions, etc. bringing important (and sometimes not so important) information to our attention. The news is everywhere, but letting the people know where to find the breaking news stories is a constant effort of search, notifications and alerts. While some people may complain about these alerts, others will tell you that they gather a good sense of the news, over the course of a day, from the alerts and notifications they receive from news sources, often on social media platforms.

CBS VIAC -0.2%N, the 24-hour news streaming service of CBS, has grown considerably since its launch in 2014 and now regularly has millions of viewers watching their breaking news stories. CBSN has had big peaks in their ratings during major live events, such as presidential debates, Covid briefings, and protests, as well as big news in the major local markets where CBS’ local TV stations program a locally-oriented CBSN feed.

CBSN has just launched a new service for the Roku connected TV platform, a major distribution platform for CBNS, called “Video Push Alerts,”. These alerts are a lot like what you would get on a mobile phone alert and promote live news events to CBSN viewers across the 12 major local CBS station news markets. The Video Push Alerts were tested, pre-launch, on the Apple TV system.

Hollywood Reporter announced this new feature from CBSN today. During an interview with Christy Tanner, executive vp and GM of CBS News Digital, she said to The Reporter, “Think of how ubiquitous mobile push alerts are. These are the same thing, for our CBS News app ecosystem. We are going to have the ability to alert you when something interesting newsworthy and live is happening in one of our 12 live streams.” The markets include: New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Boston, Los Angeles, the Bay Area, Denver, Chicago and Dallas-Fort Worth.

With the election approaching rapidly no doubt there will be many alerts about rallies, scandals, announcements, and controversies boiling the news’ waters.

In an email exchange with this contributor, Ms. Tanner expanded on her thoughts about the importance of local live programming, saying, “With video push alerts, CBSN continues to lead the marketplace in both editorial and technology innovation. Now, our producers can easily let viewers know when something is breaking on one of our 12 live streams, delivering on our mission of public service by putting the spotlight on our reporters’ excellent work.” 

“When we do research, we hear people say that their most trusted outlet is their local news,” Tanner says. “We recognize that value, and we wanted to be able to be the first mover in local streaming at a national level, so that people can stay connected to their communities, wherever they are.”

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