Report: NBC to sell TV shows via Apple’s iTunes Store in UK

NBC Universal is close to signing a deal to sell TV shows through Apple’s iTunes Store in the UK, according to a report from C21Media.

C21Media reports that NBC plans to test the UK market with a handful of sci-fi series, a genre they fell is most likely to be popular with early adopters. TV Shows would include “Surface,” “Battlestar Galactica,” and “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.”

According to the report, an Apple spokesperson said the company had “no new news” about launching TV Shows via their iTunes Store in the UK.

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Tommy Boy” for the heads up.]

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  1. YES! Where are the Canadian annoucements! You’d think they’d get Canada the content before the UK! Canadian laws probably making it too difficult. This is what keeps me from buying the video iPod. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”cool grin” style=”border:0;” />

  2. The reason it has to be done one country at a time is that there are different producers, lawyers, publishers, lawyers, distributors, lawyers, authors, lawyers, actors, lawyers, unions, lawyers, rights-holders, lawyers, etc., lawyers, etc. that have to be dealt with in each country. Few agreements are worldwide, thus you have a musician on Virgin in the UK, Warner in the US, and Sony BMG in Japan. Similarly a TV show may be distributed by Universal in the USA, by Sony in the UK. All of the other groups who get a cut out of any pie must agree on their share from each country of distribution.

    And with Canada, thanks to Canadian Content, you’ll never get any videos until the CBC signs a distribution agreement with Apple. God I can’t wait to download that Gordon Lightfoot Variety Hour.

  3. It’s quite easy to see the cause of the delay. In the US, NBC, ABC etc. are both provider and broadcaster. In other countries, the American companies, acting as providers, have to sell the rights to broadcast the shows to third party networks, who then for a period of time get exclusivity on the content for that territory.

    Legally, it’s only when this period of time expires that the providers can offer the content on iTMS.

    So the only way we’re going to really get the benefit of iTMS TV here is if Apple make deals with UK providers, for example Channel 4 or any of the independent program makers. Although I would like to see the BBC involved, their own digital distribution plans added to their need to remain non-commercial may prohibit it.

    Lastly, with regards to the shows mentioned in the article, Battlestar Galactica is great, but I think the existing deal to show it on Sky will probably mean we only get the 2003 mini-series to begin with.

  4. In the words of Steve Ballmer
    ‘,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers ,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers,Lawyers’

  5. Why on earth should Canada get content before the UK or indeed any other (English speaking) country. If there is logic in that comment it is beyond me especially in light of the problems establishing the music store there.

    One presumes on a more general tack that programmes being produced now will have download stores taken into consideration when distribution agreements (especially abroard) are discussed whereever they are produced. However Dave H is absolutely right about the complexitry of existing programming which only time or hard bargaining with local channels can solve. In the uk cable companies are having the same problems with content shown initially on all the comercial channels with their ‘replay’ services. Only Bravo and a few others offer content at present. Ironically it is the BBC that offers the bulk of the content here and makes the service worth while, so it seems deals can be done although I don’t know the nature of ithat particular deal as it stands. I can presume perhaps that it is primarily the advertising powers that be that are the major sticking point here in negotiations though I have been told that they continue with ITV and Channel 4 to include content from them.

  6. Thank you, at last! I don’t have a television because the terrestrial content isn’t, in general, worth the license fee, and it works out cheaper to buy DVD sets of the few TV shows I might be interested in (or rent them from Blockbuster–£5 for a 22 episode season is very good value). This will give me the opportunity to try out lesser-known series to see if they’re worth buying in general, and will also enable me to download programmes to my laptop to watch on holidays when I don’t want to be carting DVDs around (or having to go to the bother of ripping them).

  7. Thanks Tommy Boy… I agree with everything you’ve said. Damn, Canadian Content rules foster an environment for mediocre Canadian content. People aren’t pushed to do their best work because they know they’ll get air time because they have to.

    I wonder who we can turn the screws on to get them moving on this. So, frustrating!

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