CBS is looking to have a staff of around 60 people for the launch, including interactive, technical and editorial, many plucked from current cable TV news ranks.News of this new venture broke almost a year ago at the end of last October. Peter Lauria of BuzzFeed said at the time that:
- the service would be distinct from other CBS News-branded shows, websites and apps
- the service was a coalition between CBS News and CBS Interactive (CNet etc.)
- it would be available for "streaming for smartphones and tablets, on game consoles like Microsoft’s Xbox or Sony’s Playstation, on over-the-top TV distribution services such as Roku or Apple TV, and on online video platforms like Hulu Plus or YouTube"
- Even though CBS News has an older demographic, this service is still important for them to launch because older viewers are moving to digital platforms just as rapidly as younger viewers.
Brian Stelter, then a media reporter for the New York Times, also reported that the name of the service would be "CBS News Stream" although there is no official word yet from CBS News as to whether this is still the case. Stelter described the channel by saying:
Plans for the Internet channel might be best likened to a 24-hour news radio station, which intersperses live updates with prerecorded interviews and features. The channel would have video clips from news broadcasts like “CBS This Morning” and “60 Minutes,” as well as additional material that did not make it onto television, presented in both a linear format like a normal cable channel and an on-demand format like a website.It isn't known whether this is how the company will continue to run this operation. Lauria reported in his piece that CBS would consider adding staff to create original content but it's unconfirmed whether the 60 people that CBS is currently hiring will be creating that content or if they'll simply be providing technological support to make sure the project functions the way it is supposed to.
The only hire which I am aware of so far is a former news producer/multimedia journalist for Al Jazeera America and an NABJ member who was hired to be an associate producer. The Washington Post's Wesley Lowery confirmed CBS' hiring of Dexter Mullins on his Twitter page during the NABJ Convention which took place in Boston 2 weeks ago. Mullins wrote trendy stories for AJAM's website.
What do I personally expect to see on this network? Most likely it'll be similar to what ABC News Live offers which is live newscasts throughout the day, extended breaking news coverage of stories which can't be covered on ABC live and clips from segments of various shows. I also expect CBS This Morning's BuzzFeed Brews to be streamed live on the network and I wouldn't be surprised to see clips from PBS's The Charlie Rose Show on the network as well (it's just a hunch).