The British Broadcasting Corporation is launching a service, allowing users to pay to own the Corporation's content. According to paidContent, the BBC is calling this endeavour, Project Barcelona and intends to put up all of its catalog, including programming created and broadcasted 80 years ago, online. The BBC already makes available its current content online, through its iPlayer, for streaming till 30 days after the episode has been aired. This content is viewable in multiple countries outside the United Kingdom. The report says that the BBC hopes to compete with iTunes on this project and that they will make download-to-own shows available for £1.89 per show (Rs.147 approx). They have been negotiating with some of the independent producers that have created the shows over the years. The corporation is stating that this project could not only create a new revenue stream, but also help out in the battle against piracy.  

Project Barcelona coming to you from London

Project Barcelona coming to you from London

After the 30 days of streaming new content is up, the rights to the content either goes to the commercial unit of the corporation, BBC Worldwide, or go back to the producers who then license the rights to other commercial ventures like iTunes. The BBC wants to give producers an incentive to pass the rights to the content, back to the corporation by offering a better revenue share to the producers. The report says that the network will offer producers £0.40 (Rs.31 approx) for every £1.89 show downloaded. The iTunes model would bring producers £0.28 on the shows at the same price (going by Apple's 30 percent policy). Operating costs, like encoding shows will be met by the BBC. They further added that independent producers do not have to sign over the rights exclusively to Project Barcelona, and that they can continue to license with iTunes, simultaneously.

However, Project Barcelona is only reported to be applied to the UK, that is, shows will be available to buy, so far only in the United Kingdom. On the other hand, for the most part, shows on iTunes can be downloaded the world over. BBC has made a statement on the matter saying, “In addition to BBC iPlayer, the BBC already makes some of its content available on a download-to-own basis. Any proposal to extend this facility would require not just the support of the industry but formal approval by the BBC Executive and the BBC Trust.

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