updated 10:20 am EST, Fri March 2, 2007
YouTube Deal With BBC
The BBC today announced that it had struck a landmark deal with YouTube to put a large amount of its content on the video streaming site. The first such international agreement of its kind will see the Google-owned network host short segments of the British broadcaster's programming that vary by channel, the BBC says. The already launched BBC channel will host show commentary and behind the scenes footage; an upcoming channel, BBC News, will in turn give viewers outside the UK an opportunity to see news reports previously available only on the BBC's website.
Most important of all, the company says, is BBC Worldwide. The Web channel will host segments of the TV operator's most popular shows, including Top Gear and Spooks (MI5 in the US) -- providing the first officially sanctioned means of watching the content outside of BBC World. However, the BBC would be much kinder than other content providers, technology director Ashley Highfield said: while the BBC would replace poor copies or help guard others' copyrights, it has no plans to remove bootlegs.
"We don't want to be overzealous," he said. "A lot of the material on YouTube is good promotional content for us."