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3/2/2007
03:43 PM
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Google Gets BBC Content For YouTube

The BBC hopes exposure on YouTube will encourage online video viewers to avail themselves of its proposed iPlayer service, which lets viewers see BBC shows on their computers for seven days after airing.

Even as major media companies like Viacom play coy about wanting their content shown on YouTube, Google continues to find partners keen on exhibitionism.

The British Broadcasting Corporation and Google today announced a partnership to bring BBC content to YouTube.

"We're delighted to be joining forces with the BBC to bring the best TV programming available to the YouTube community," said Eric Schmidt, CEO and chairman of Google, in a statement. "We will continue to invest in our platforms and technologies to help our partners make the most of the enormous opportunities presented by the billion people now online."

Practically speaking, that means Internet users worldwide will soon have access to selected clips and "specially commissioned promotional content" -- don't call them ads -- for series like Doctor Who and Life on Mars.

BBC World will offer some 30 clips a day of ad-supported news and analysis. And there will be an entertainment channel called BBC Worldwide that features clips from Top Gear, Spooks, The Catherine Tate Show, The Mighty Boosh and other shows you've probably never heard of unless you live in the U.K.

This being YouTube, viewers will get to post comments online, a decided improvement on more primitive forms of feedback such as shouting at the television.

The BBC hopes exposure on YouTube will encourage online video viewers to avail themselves of its proposed iPlayer service, Windows-only software that lets viewers view BBC shows on their computers for seven days after airing. The iPlayer is part of a broader BBC initiative to monetize its international audience.

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