YouTube to buy content production firm?


Video sharing site YouTube is in talks to buy US web video producer Next New Networks, according to US reports. The New York Times said a deal would be the Google-owned firm’s first foray into content production.

No terms have been disclosed, but the NYT quoted analysts applauding the potential acquisition. YouTube has sought to increase its share of professionally produced content as it faces competition from the likes of Hulu, a joint venture whose backers include media companies News Corp, Walt Disney Co's ABC, and NBC, controlled by General Electric.


Viacom Inc sued YouTube for $1 billion, accusing the video site of allowing copyrighted videos to play online without permission. Earlier this year, a New York federal judge threw out the lawsuit.

Fred Seibert, CEO and co-founder of Next New Networks, was a creative director at Viacom-owned MTV, but not when the company sued YouTube.

Next New Networks began in 2007 and is behind the Web comedy show Barely Political and the online cartoon network Channel Frederator.

During the 2008 U.S. presidential election, Barely Political won millions of online views of its comedy videos featuring "Obama Girl," a singing and dancing devotee of then presidential candidate Barack Obama.

This year, Next New Networks scored another online video hit with its parody "Bed Intruder Song," which was the top viewed entry of 2010 at YouTube.

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