The British Broadcasting Corporation has announced the launch of a deal to provide content through three channels on the web’s most popular video aggregator – Google’s YouTube. This move adds weight to the argument that the BBC is moving away from its position as a publicly funded broadcaster and becoming a more commercially-focused organization.
The British Broadcasting Corporation has revealed that it is to offer content via YouTube.
The BBC has announced the current availability of two branded entertainment channels providing short clips of the UK public service broadcaster’s content and the intention to launch a news-oriented channel later in 2007.
The deal – which is non-exclusive and set to run for several years – will aim to expand the BBC’s audience reach through YouTube’s monthly audience of around 70 million, as well as generate profits from a revenue share scheme. Two of the channels – BBC Worldwide and BBC news – will carry ads, with the remaining channel avoiding any advertisements to remain in line with the BBC’s public service remit.
The move will be mutually beneficial to both parties. The BBC will gain advantages from utilizing alternative distribution points to promote content, derive revenue from advertisements on two of its channels and, with the partnership, drive online traffic back to BBC websites. In addition, the move is expected to ultimately benefit Google through the expansion of its high-end content portfolio. This will add value to its service as the competitive environment for the online video sharing market intensifies.
As premium content is not available at launch, the primary motives for the partnership for the BBC at present are to use the platform as a promotions vehicle rather than as a platform to generate substantial revenue. However, the move also reinforces the argument that the BBC is moving away from its position as a publicly funded broadcaster and becoming a more commercially-focused organization.
The move might also help push the BBC brand into markets where it has not had a large foothold – such as in North America – where YouTube’s presence online is considerably strong.