Canwest fighting fragmentation with big-time streaming

The net has brought more value to its online offering by streaming an array of new shows, fan favourites and specialty programming on its websites.

Canwest announced yesterday that more than 50 top series – including Knight Rider, 90210, House, Heroes, The Office and Deal or No Deal – will be available for streaming on its network websites.

‘We understand that viewers aren’t always able to watch their favourite shows at the designated time, and our role as a broadcaster is to offer hit TV in more places and at more times than just a traditional schedule,’ says Barbara Williams, EVP content, Canwest Broadcasting.

Williams says advertisers are able to buy sponsorships of the programs as well as standard broadband ad opps, including seven-second opening billboards and 15- or 30-second commercial spots.

Canwest’s move is good news for advertisers, Rodney Perry, managing partner, director at Toronto’s MEC Interactive, tells MiC. ‘The Canwest broadband offering is a great way for us to potentially capture some lost TV ratings due to fragmentation, [as] we continue to struggle with the cost structure of broadband vs. TV and other digital media.’

‘When you look at the CPMs for broadband versus traditional TV, or even online media, broadband is priced at a premium,’ he adds. ‘Canwest and the other broadband operators will have to justify the premium.’

New programs like Knight Rider and 90210 will be making their way onto Canwest’s online properties this season. They’ll add to a list of popular shows already streaming on and, including House, Heroes, The Office and Deal or No Deal.

And debuting online in Canada are daytime soaps The Young and the Restless and Days of Our Lives.

Specialty TV shows also online include Damages, Weeds, The Shield and The L Word on; Sarah’s House, Colin and Justin’s Home Heist and Make it Right New Orleans on; Chef Abroad, Fresh and Chef School on; and Till Debt Do Us Part, Wedding S.O.S, Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood and Bulging Brides on

On top of full-episode streaming rights, Canwest has also secured a broadband asset package from NBC Universal, which includes behind-the-scenes footage as well as specially produced webisodes, blogs and games.