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by Mike Zazaian November 7, 2006 - 1:27pm, 13 Comments

YouTube May Ink Deal With Verizon

A report in the Wall Street Journal suggests that content from internet video behemoth YouTube could show up on Verizon cell phone and television services in the near future.

Under the current terms of the agreement customers of Verizon Wireless would be able to view YouTube content through Verizon’s V Cast premium video service. The WSJ also said that Verizon would feature YouTube videos as part of an on-demand feature that will be available with Verizon’s new FiOS TV service will soon launch nationwide.

It remains to be seen, however, how the controversy over YouTube’s business model will effect Verizon and the launch of the upcoming TV service. While YouTube itself hasn’t been the victim of any copyright lawsuits, similar companies such as Grouper and Bolt.com have faced the wrath of media companies as a result of hosting copyrighted content uploaded by their users. While the enormity of the YouTube and its parent company Google seem to have deterred such lawsuits for now, Verizon could easily be sued for illegally hosting copyrighted content were YouTube to find their feet in the fire.

It’s unclear whether Verizon’s confidence in YouTube bodes well for both companies, or whether Verizon is getting itself in over its head. Whatever the case, YouTube-boosted TV programming will be massively appealing to media consumers, who have said that their biggest gripe with current digital cable packages is the inability to download internet video content. It may also be enough to make Verizon’s fledgling FiOS TV service a cable contender right from the get-go, which is no small feat considering the media giants such as Comcast that have had a stranglehold over the industry in recent years.

Via Reuters
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