During an interview at NCTA, Brian Lamb, the chairman and CEO of C-SPAN, spoke of the bandwidth costs and demands faced by the not-for-profit network’s increasing online activities. One option under discussion — a deal with Google Video — would include bandwidth and reduce the strain while offering ways to make money from some downloads or links back to DVD sales. The unexpected demand for Stephen Colbert’s controversial performance at the White House Correspondents Dinner gave the prospective partnership a chance for a test run. C-SPAN asked viral video sites iFilm and YouTube to pull the user-posted copyrighted material from their sites and, instead, chose Google Video as an non-exclusive provider. (The video already was available free on cspan.org and is still.) In exchange, Google agreed to offer the entire 95-minute, 17-sec. video intact for free alongside full excerpts of the most wanted segments — and to link back to C-SPAN’s front page as well as the cspanstore.org page where the dinner DVD is on sale for $24.95.
From a C-SPAN statement: “It is important for online video providers to understand that C-SPAN-produced programming is protected by copyright in the same way that the video of any other news network is protected. Our goal in enforcing our copyright has been and continues to be to ensure that C-SPAN’s reputation for unbiased coverage of the political process is maintained.”
Meanwhile, I just started the stream of C-SPAN’s coverage of a 43-minute speech by President Bush — unauthorized and uploaded by a political organization to Google Video.
Related: Brian Lamb, Chairman & CEO, C-SPAN: Exploring Online Money Making, Google An Option