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4:51 am - 10/24/2009

BBC plans for paid 'global iPlayer'

BBC plans for paid 'global iPlayer'

The BBC is planning to launch a paid for international version of the iPlayer which would allow global audiences to watch programmes like Doctor Who, Torchwood and Top Gear.


BBC Worldwide, the profit making arm of the corporation, said that a global iPlayer would enable the business to raise its prices for its premium content.

Executive say that global audiences would be prepared to pay $10 for an episode of hit programmes like Torchwood, the Doctor Who spin-off starring John Barrowman.

The global iPlayer would also host “premium catalogue material” including historical material from the BBC’s archives and catch-up material from overseas channels.


It would not show the BBC’s domestic iPlayer content because of international rights clearance required.

However, it could host programmes shown by other UK broadcasters such as Channel 4.

The focus is expected to be on America, where 20 million of BBC.com’s 50 million users are registered.

Luke Bradley Jones, who heads BBC Worldwide’s digital operations in the US and managing director of BBC.com, told PaidContent that the global iPlayer would enable the business to raise its prices.

He said: “Millions of people love Torchwood and would probably pay 10 bucks an episode rather than two bucks,” he said, referring to the price-ceiling imposed by iTunes.

The BBC iPlayer allows viewers to watch popular BBC programmes for up to seven days after they were first broadcast. It has received over 500 million requests to view BBC television programmes, like EastEnders, since its launch in 2007.

The international iPlayer plans, reportedly six months in development, will first require approval from the BBC Trust, the Corporation's governing arm.

In the meantime, BBC Worldwide intends to sell applications on several mobile platforms, where it sees "a much higher willingness to pay for content." Mr Bradley-Jones added that commercial BBC mobile apps will likely cost around $2 and arrive in the next few months.

source

I have wanted this forever, but $10 an episode? Sorry, no thanks. The ridiculous DVD prices already kill my wallet.

Ignoring the price, what British TV shows would you guys like to see on a global iPlayer?
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ricour 24th-Oct-2009 12:19 pm (UTC)
well, it shouldn't be free. unless international audiences are willing to pay the extortionate licence fee as well.
ohohyes 24th-Oct-2009 12:21 pm (UTC)
mte
jennybenz 24th-Oct-2009 12:33 pm (UTC)
It definitely shouldn't be free, but $10 an episode is insane. Apply that to Torchwood season 3 for example: $50 for 5 episodes, which is over twice the cost I paid for the DVD. I don't think that's a smart business plan at all. Personally, I think it should be a monthly subscription type thing.
rustlemybustle 24th-Oct-2009 01:18 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I think they should pay like a £13 a month subscription, as it's basically a months TV license. I know they want to make a profit but they've got to realise people know what torrenting is, haha.
___unluckystars 24th-Oct-2009 01:38 pm (UTC)
i don't even own a fucking tv and i still get threatening letters about being taken to court over not paying the licence fee. it's a joke.
daisymay_tr 24th-Oct-2009 03:18 pm (UTC)
Same thing happened to me and they told me it was because I own a computer and a computer is capable of receiving live tv. So freaking unacceptable.
milkradio 24th-Oct-2009 03:48 pm (UTC)
IKR same shit happened to me when I lived in university accommodation in Edinburgh. I was like "Wait, what the hell is this!? I haven't downloaded shit or used their live streaming at all, WHAT DID I DO?!" and I was worried I would get investigated and be deported or something lol and my Scottish friend just went "Oh, that's just BS they do to scare people, don't even bother worrying about it." Yeah, it was obnoxious and stressful because I didn't know about TV licensing fees before I moved to the UK :/
edgeofwhatever 24th-Oct-2009 04:28 pm (UTC)
This is a genuine question, not a rhetorical device: are you able to watch stuff on Hulu or US network sites like cbs.com in the UK?
ru_ki 24th-Oct-2009 08:13 pm (UTC)
I'd happily pay the full license fee for the same access to the BBC websites as the UK gets. But I won't pay $10 an episode. That's crazytalk.
jennybenz 24th-Oct-2009 02:15 pm (UTC)
I've never seen Peep Show, but I'm sorely tempted to make myself download it because I loooove David Mitchell.

[edited because that sounded really weird before... I need sleep.]

Edited at 2009-10-24 02:16 pm (UTC)
phonicphile 24th-Oct-2009 02:46 pm (UTC)
They have the first series on Hulu I think.
postwar_dream 24th-Oct-2009 07:54 pm (UTC)
Please watch it. It's so good.
sodahands 24th-Oct-2009 12:24 pm (UTC)
Hm $10 an episode or download the episodes for free?
GOD IT'S LIKE SOPHIE'S CHOICE!
peiyu 24th-Oct-2009 12:48 pm (UTC)
It's like the Hulu thing tbh.
sodahands 24th-Oct-2009 12:51 pm (UTC)
But isn't Hulu free though?
milkradio 24th-Oct-2009 03:49 pm (UTC)
I thought the Hulu article said they'd have a paid system and a free option as well? and the paid option is like a subscription, not a per episode fee...? Idk, I'd consider doing this BBC iPlayer thing if it was $10 a month or something (MAYBE), but per episode?! That is insane.
jxcka 24th-Oct-2009 12:28 pm (UTC)
eastenders? haha really?
ricour 24th-Oct-2009 12:39 pm (UTC)
ngl, i'm abroad for a while, and missing eastenders is killing me. darren miller and heather trott producing spawn is something only that show can pull off.
jxcka 24th-Oct-2009 02:06 pm (UTC)
hmm darren... you mean to say the little squirt who just got engaged to the other gir?? holy fuck!!!!!! mind. blown.
thrillho 24th-Oct-2009 02:23 pm (UTC)
OMG, what was his reason for sleeping with her? Or was it given yet? I don't even watch this show, but the coverage of this story has me interested.
telegram_ 24th-Oct-2009 01:44 pm (UTC)
HDU
8hrs 24th-Oct-2009 12:31 pm (UTC)
Whether the price is something they've calculated as reasonable (for them) or not, assuming anyone would be willing to pay $10 to watch one episode today is FOOLISH.

Even more so if iPlayer is service that's either streaming or not allowing one to watch the episode on a player of their choice and burn it on a disc or something.
cmm1982 24th-Oct-2009 06:43 pm (UTC)
I totally agree!!! They must be mad!!! I can understand something like 40 dollars a month maybe less but not 10 bucks per episode!
mandlebars 25th-Oct-2009 12:38 am (UTC)
I'm not paying for my TV license so everywhere else can watch it for free.
8hrs 25th-Oct-2009 09:30 am (UTC)
...But you're foolish if you think online people abroad will pay $10 per episode. :|

How's the tv license in UK anyhow? Is there any way to not pay it?
neversquare 24th-Oct-2009 12:35 pm (UTC)
OT-ish but: Is The Inbetweeners on in the US yet?
peiyu 24th-Oct-2009 12:48 pm (UTC)
Download bb.
neversquare 24th-Oct-2009 12:48 pm (UTC)
Oh no I'm British I'm just really intrigued to know what Americans think of it.
ex_rogerpit 24th-Oct-2009 12:36 pm (UTC)
$10 an episode? That's beyond insane. A DVD boxset of Doctor Who costs around $70, I think - and that's 13 episodes plus the Confidentials.

And they wonder why so many people use BitTorrent...
sodahands 24th-Oct-2009 12:56 pm (UTC)
In Canada they cost over a $100 D:
imemine69 24th-Oct-2009 02:52 pm (UTC)
I just got series 2 for like, 67 bucks. Bestbuy was having a sale! But yeah. It's usually ridiculous.

I went to find Top Gear series 10 to buy - 120$. Fucks sakes. I'd rather spend my time downloading and figuring out how to put it on a disc myself than pay that much for dvds.
milkradio 24th-Oct-2009 03:52 pm (UTC)
IKR IT'S CRAZY. I want to buy Black Books on DVD, but fuck if I can afford $150 or some shit for 18 episodes. My friend who was on exchange with me last year ended up buying the UK DVDs because they were so much cheaper and she's just going to watch them on her friends' multi-region DVD player when she went back to Vancouver.
lovedforaday 24th-Oct-2009 01:46 pm (UTC)
wait a about a six months to a year to buy them. I saw season 4 of Doctor Who used on Amazon for about $23 this summer.
mischief89 24th-Oct-2009 03:12 pm (UTC)
I saw the FIRST season of Doctor Who in FYE and it was $200! :| Which is just crazy
lisaee 24th-Oct-2009 12:38 pm (UTC)
No, it shouldn't be free outside of the UK (yes, I'm still bitter about Hulu), but $10 an episode? That's extortionate, espcially considering the low quality of iPlayer.
shellme 24th-Oct-2009 12:40 pm (UTC)
$10?! Tell them they're dreamin'.
drop_and_roll 24th-Oct-2009 12:43 pm (UTC)
I &hearts iPlayer but they should have more stuff from the archives like 4oD does.
dinosaur 24th-Oct-2009 12:44 pm (UTC)
$10? What a rip off.
standingtrial 24th-Oct-2009 12:47 pm (UTC)
I'm going abroad winter break and will miss my NMTB and Top Gear :(
standingtrial 24th-Oct-2009 12:48 pm (UTC)
oh actually no, downloads will save the day :D
jennybenz 24th-Oct-2009 12:50 pm (UTC)
I was about to ask if you'd have access to a laptop + internet lol
imemine69 24th-Oct-2009 02:54 pm (UTC)
youtube and streetfire.net. <--- awesome Top Gear website. Everything is on it and it's fast and really high quality!
nuravecunt 24th-Oct-2009 12:54 pm (UTC)
$10? no ty.
peiyu 24th-Oct-2009 01:03 pm (UTC)
Well, it's been said that it is good for them to have Nick Griffin on as a matter of freedom of speech. If he said anything bigotry, BBC would be responsible as well? Or something.
theantipoet 24th-Oct-2009 01:09 pm (UTC)
the question shouldn't be "is an episode worth $10," but rather, "is the convenience of watching something via the BBC player worth $10 per episode rather than taking 10 seconds to find a torrent and click on a link."

the answer to which for me is no.

I mean, really? that would be $100 to watch a 10-episode season of a show you could OWN on dvd for $20
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