Google and BBC to join forces for international iPlayer

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new-design-iplayer copy.jpgThe BBC is in talks with Google to launch an international edition of the BBC iPlayer, supported by Google owned YouTube.

The sticking point seems to be the need to acquire international rights for the content shown on the UK iPlayer.

Separate negotiations are also in progress between the BBC’s commercial arm – BBC Worldwide and YouTube, with a view to making the BBC’s archive content, for which international rights have already been acquired, available on YouTube.

It is currently possible to watch some BBC content on YouTube but only in short format; trailers and clips as opposed to entire shows and episodes.

A BBC spokesperson said: “There are a significant number of obstacles to extending this commercially to other countries, including international rights clearance. These obstacles present significant difficulties and for this reason there are no firm plans for a specific international BBC iPlayer, but audiences can watch BBC content outside the UK through numerous BBC Worldwide content deals with online partners such as iTunes.”

The news of these negotiations might scupper talks designed to offer a consolidated VoD service for UK content if NewsCorp deems the international iPlayer a significant enough threat to it’s part owned US-based Hulu VoD.

(Via Telegraph)

Oli Jones

2 comments

  • It won’t cost you anything, Google would pay for the content, bringing revenue into the BBC. Unless the government stick their interfering oar in, again.

  • I don’t really understand how this is being allowed with regard to the current TV License laws.

    You need a License to watch live tv through a television. However, if you have the Internet, you can watch most tv programs across all the on demand services for free, and no license is required. TV License payers have essentially been funding the development of the iPlayer over the past few years, giving people who don’t have a license the ability to watch tv for free!

    They are now planning to extend this out across the world, giving out free programmes, so what’s the point of even bothering with a license anymore if you have an internet connection? Or should everyone in the UK with the internet be forced to buy a license?

    The legislation is massvily outdated and this really needs sorting out. I don’t believe my tv license fee (tax) should go toward giving the rest of the world access to watch programs for free, which I have to pay for.

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