EXCLUSIVE: TV.com enters social-TV race with Relay

CBS Interactive service will get primetime promotion

CBS Interactive is giving television the Foursquare treatment.

The digital division is beta-testing TV.com Relay, a service that transplants Foursquare’s combination of user check-ins and badge rewards from brick-and-mortar venues to TV shows.

With Relay, you can check in on a particular program and make new friends chatting about your favorite shows or check out what your old friends are watching and pick up a new TV habit.

The goal: become the go-to digital companion for the live-TV experience important to a conglomerate that owns a broadcast network and wants to support its ad rates.

While TV.com Relay joins an increasingly crowded field of so-called social-TV services, its CBS affiliation will bring a huge advantage: on-air promotion in CBS primetime programming when Relay leaves beta mode in time for the fall season in September.

For more on TV.com Relay, go to THR blog Hollywood Rewired.