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02 Mar

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YouTube pays labels for pirated songs, cuts content deals with BBC

March 2, 2007 | By |

A lot’s been happening around YouTube during the last couple of days. First there were news about YouTube paying labels and content owners a share of the ad revenue generated by pirated unlicensed music:

Google Inc.’s YouTube has announced a deal with Wind-up Entertainment, an independent label, to pay it a share of revenue from advertising beside pages carrying video with Wind-up’s songs in the background, says VentureBeat. It is notable because it provides a glimpse at YouTube’s emerging strategy for compensating record labels, many of them pissed off at YouTube’s slowness to arrive at a solution for stopping piracy. Many users upload vidoes with copyrighted music playing the background. Now that Google can identify the songs with signature technology (yet to be fully announced), even the songs are pirated, this appears to be a workable resolution.

Looks like the deal with Wind-up Entertainment is initially limited to just about two hundred something songs, but let’s see how it goes. More in the press release.

Then today, the BBC – always good for a surprise and just so much more internet-savvy than German public media – and Google cut a deal to show short clips of BBC content on YouTube, all legit:

The partnership, which will build over time, comprises three elements: From the BBC: Clips of new shows and specially commissioned promotional content linked to popular series such as Doctor Who and Life On Mars. At launch, the YouTube community will be able to enjoy a range of specially- created video diaries including David Tennant and Freema Agyeman, who’ll take viewers around the set of Doctor Who; John Simm going back in time for Life On Mars; and Clive Myrie on the streets of the red zone of Baghdad From BBC Worldwide: An entertainment channel called “BBC Worldwide” showing clips from material such as Top Gear, Spooks, The Catherine Tate Show, The Mighty Boosh and a range of factual programmes including those presented by David Attenborough. The channel will include a limited amount of advertising. From BBC World, the BBC’s international commercial television channel: Around 30 news clips per day will be offered, with up-to-the-minute news and analysis from around the world. The advertising-funded clips will be available to users outside the UK only.

(To demonstrate just how tech-savvy they are, the BBC’s director of Future Media and Technology, Ashley Highfield, explains the benefits of the YouTube deal in a brief video, too.)

Again, check out the details in BBC’s press release, if you can stand the marketing lingo.

Now this is a lot of stuff right there, and good news for YouTube. (Much more so than for the BBC, who demonstrate openness, but I’m not sure they really need the additional users as much as YouTube will need some legit content in case the lawyers home in.) More importantly, though, it shows that more and more big players in the content market arrive a the mindset (eventually!) that allows them to embrace the net. And that’s something we all profit from.

Also, it’s something the big German stations, namely ARD and ZDF, should take as an example for how things could be done.

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Comments

  1. i fucking hate the BBC trying to boycott my generation with their pathetic PR plan. I think we should start a revelation to fill the BBC with young minds instead of middleclass borign old farts : )

  2. You reckon? So bad, huh? :) Dunno, for me the whole BBC&youtube thing looks like some odd wannabe action if you just look at it isolatedly. But looking at the big picture, it seems like they’re at least trying. Honestly, look at the German stations – basically the same structure in terms of who pays for it, and how (some differences in the details, but…), but compared to them, the BBC is leaps ahead. Then again, a revelation never hurts ;-)