Within months, the Google unit will start offering full-length, time-delayed TV shows and archived hits from the British broadcaster
Channel Four Television has signed a deal with YouTube to bring its flagship shows to the video-sharing site.
The agreement will see programming from Channel 4's catch up service, 4oD, made available for free through YouTube, a unit of Google (GOOG).
The broadcaster's best-known shows such as Skins, Hollyoaks, The Inbetweeners and Peep Show will all feature on YouTube, along with around 3,000 hours of full-length programming such as Teachers and Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares from the Channel 4 archive.
The first Channel 4 content will begin appearing on YouTube in the coming months—shortly after the programs appear on TV — with a full service available by early 2010.
The partnership will initially run for three years and the two parties will share advertising revenues.
Under the terms of the deal, Channel 4 will have a branded presence on YouTube and will be able to sell advertising around its own content, as well as around some non-Channel 4 content on the site.
The broadcaster hopes that syndicating its programs on a non-exclusive basis will help 4oD to expand its market share.
"Syndication deals are key to Channel 4's strategy for monetizing on-demand audiences," said a spokeswoman for Channel 4. "YouTube already has 20 million users in the UK and we believe it is certain to be a major player in the UK [video on demand] market."
While the Channel 4 deal may be the first time a broadcaster has put its catch-up service on YouTube, it seems unlikely to be the last. "We look forward to other similar agreements to come," YouTube's director of partnerships Patrick Walker said in a statement.
Channel 4's original programs are already available over the internet via its own on-demand 4oD platform, which it launched at the end of 2006. According to the broadcaster, the 4oD platform had more than 10 million views of long form content in September — a year-on-year increase of 204 per cent.
Source: http://www.businessweek.com and silicon.com
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