BBC Starts Sharing Video with Commercial Newspapers

Last week one SEO reported that the BBC showed some improvements in its search engine rankings, with pages appearing more often for generic search terms (much like with Wikipedia). This is good news for the BBC, as for years it has been producing high quality journalistic content on a wide range of subjects. It is also regularly updated its website, adding new features and improving the design, to ensure that it is kept fresh and modern. It added video clips to its news channel a few years ago, which really revolutionised how to read news online. The online medium has become much like an on demand news service. Now, in a bold step, the BBC is going to share its videos with British newspapers (the online version obviously).

The lucky papers chosen are the Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, Guardian and Independent, and as the BBC is a public service company, the videos will be shown free of charge. The BBC said that it believes that this is the best way to maintain its high quality publish news service. Of course, SEO professionals are keen to see if each video provides a valuable link back to the BBC. Maybe this is another project to boost its ranking in the search engines. Maybe the BBC archives will soon rival those of Wikipedia?

The Telegraph said it was a step in the right direction after complaints by newspapers that the BBC had stifled their attempts to expand online. They have criticised the BBC for using the licence fee to break into new media, while their own businesses are suffering from a downturn in advertising. The BBC’s media correspondent Torin Douglas said the agreement, which begins on Tuesday, marked something of a thaw in relations between the Corporation and commercially-funded media. Other newspaper websites could sign up later, he said. Source: BBC News

This is not the first time the BBC has ventured into the commercial sector though. The Beeb already has a video sharing agreement with Google’s Youtube, where short clips from the BBC are shown. The BBC then receives a share of the advertising revenue generated by Google’s Adsense adverts. As the BBC is a public service company, it cannot show adverts on its own website – it is funded entirely by licence payers. However, there is little to stop the BBC sharing its content, and then receiving a payment back – much in the same way that it sells documentaries and television shows to many other countries.

It is thought that this new initiative is also intended to finance government proposals to invest 3.5% of the licence fee to other broadcasters, including ITV, to pay for more regional news and children’s programming.

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