John Smith, head of the corporation's commercial outfit, BBC Worldwide, said it had developed iPlayer all on its own and suggested that UK broadcasters join in and submit content for the service before some upstart like Apple comes along and exploits the business opportunity.
The record companies had been caught napping by the likes of Apple, he warned, and if broadcasters weren't careful they could find themselves out in the cold as well.
Smith told the Financial Times digital media conference: "Imagine some third party controlling the positions and pricing of all our content on the web so we might get, say, 50% of £1.99 whether it's Planet Earth that costs millions to produce or daytime cookery shows that cost thousands."
Smith said he wanted the Beeb's iPlayer to become the platform for delivering video content over the Web. "We would be delighted if other major UK broadcasters wanted to join us and make it a pan-UK service," he said. µ
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