Blog Post

TV Producers Will Oppose BBC iPlayer For UK Travelers

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!

Independent television producers have vowed to block making BBC iPlayer accessible to UK license payers whilst abroad, just hours after BBC director-general Mark Thompson announced the intention.

This has not been agreed with the BBC and we will resist this,” John McVay, CEO of the sector’s trade group Pact, told paidContent:UK.

“The terms of trade DO NOT allow for the iPlayer to be accessed outside of the UK as this cuts across the commercial rights of independent producers.”

In 2004, Pact brokered terms of trade with the BBC as a template for commissioning contracts.

In 2006, an additional agreement concerning video on-demand was struck which allows producers to commercialise their own programmes through VOD aggregators after an initial period of BBC exclusivity.

But that agreement concerns rights “in the UK”. Even if the BBC develops a way to authenticate UK license payers whilst they are overseas, this could stretch the limits of the agreement…

Indeed, the TV rights business is highly dependent on windowing on a national boundary basis. That’s why iPlayer can only be accessed in the UK.

Thompson appeared to acknowledge the potential niggle when he announced the idea in his MacTaggart Lecture at the MediaGuardian Edinburgh International Television Festival on Friday night: “It

7 Responses to “TV Producers Will Oppose BBC iPlayer For UK Travelers”

  1. The article states “Even if the BBC develops a way to authenticate UK license payers whilst they are overseas, this could stretch the limits of the agreement…” However, the reality is that one does not need to be a license fee payer in the UK to access the iPlayer (or other networks’ equivalents). Growing numbers of people are watching television programming exclusively online (both BBC and commercial networks). They don’t own TVs, just computers, and they don’t pay the license fee. The BBC needs to move with the times and work out a way to make iPlayer programming available to everyone, everywhere for a fair price.

  2. Independent television producers your fools, your simply shooting your self in the foot !

    I know you have plans to block VPN by using “Preferred Partners ” In the UK e.g.: BT, Virgin , yes that will work nicely by blocking all UK data centres but for how long?

    STOP this madness and go GLOBAL !

  3. davedcdc21

    What a bunch of prissy idiots the British are. Everyone I know over here uses a VPN to watch the Beeb, though most of the time it’s no better than local TV. Why do the British think they’re so important? The BBC spend vast amounts of stolen cash trying to impose regional restrictions via IP filtering – if they spent it more wisely they may not need to steal so much money by force from the British public.

  4. So while John McVay fiddles – the rest of us will just continue to download BBC shows as we’ve done before that will guarantee no revenue goes back to those ‘independent producers’.