updated 1/23/2008 7:28:28 PM ET 2008-01-24T00:28:28

The online community MySpace is partnering with the BBC to bring some of the British broadcaster's programs to a worldwide audience in the site's first content deal involving a major network.

The move, to be announced Thursday, continues MySpace's push to become a hub for video, music and other content and more similar to Internet portals like Yahoo Inc.

By contrast, MySpace's chief rival, Facebook, has largely focused on messaging, networking and other social tools.

MySpace, owned by media conglomerate News Corp., will present selected BBC programs through its video platform, MySpaceTV. The clips are to include interviews with celebrities, comedy sketches and classic series such as "Doctor Who" and "Robin Hood."

The BBC already has a deal with Google Inc.'s YouTube allowing the popular video-sharing site to show excerpts of news and entertainment programs.

Visitors to MySpace will be able to share clips with friends through such means as embedding them into their personal profile pages.

"With the global nature of the deal, this is a great opportunity to put the best shows from the BBC in front of new audiences," Simon Danker, director of digital media for BBC Worldwide, said in a statement.

The British Broadcasting Corp. and MySpace will share advertising revenue under the deal.

Jeff Berman, MySpace's executive vice president for marketing and content, said the deal "reflects a fast-approaching Internet future defined by co-operation between corporations."

The BBC, funded with a fee paid by all TV users in Britain, tries to generate additional revenue through such distribution deals around the world. In the United States, it operates BBC America through cable and satellite systems.

MySpace has localized versions of MySpaceTV in seven languages and 27 countries or regions.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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