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Google to Viacom: Be More Like BBC, We’re Not Slowing Down

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Google has come out with a bullish defence against Viacom’s $1 billion copyright lawsuit. The Guardian quotes Google’s head of video content partnerships, Patrick Walker, speaking in London: “Viacom took one approach, and people like the BBC have taken another approach. We’re not slowing down in any way. It goes to tell that the usage of YouTube has grown significantly from the Viacom announcement. We don’t see it impacting our business.”
The BBC signed a carriage and ad revenue-share deal with the video sharing site last month that places short program clips on three YouTube channels. Viacom, on the other hand, served a lawsuit claiming a massive copyright abuse over YouTube’s use of some 150,000 clips. The two companies operate in different markets, of course – BBC has been charged with adding more commercial revenue streams though its content is owned by the British public, while Viacom’s material is its own to monetize.
More on Youtube-Rivals JV: Fox, NBC and Sony; Distribution on MySpace, MSN and Yahoo
BBC In Clips Deal With YouTube; Ad Rev Share; UK Blackout On News Clip
Viacom Sues Google-YouTube: Wants More Than $1 Billion In Damages, Injunction

One Response to “Google to Viacom: Be More Like BBC, We’re Not Slowing Down”

  1. Actually it's a general miss-conception that the British public own the content that is shown on the BBC — although it's a myth that has certainly been inferred by the BBC in the past and now in the digital age has come back to bite it.

    The BBC is mainly an aggregator of programming, with *some* (read: little) of the content produced by the BBC. However it is the aggregator that the public (I guess) owns. Fame Academy is owned by Endomol, for example (although why that example came to my head I don't know!).

    I think Viacom were wise to avoid YouTube as they are big enough to produce their own video sharing site that more tightly integrates into their existing brands and promotes upsell into the video download/DVD sale market. Of course, the BBC is also big enough to do this itself, which is why I'm surprised the BBC entered into this deal. Clearly the short-term win of some ad revenue appeased some accountant somewhere who was charged with developing revenues for the BBC internationally (where it must compete commercially as per it's Charter). However it's a short-term strategy that misses such a longer-term opportunity