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NBC Universal to Bow Content on P2P

17 Nov, 2005 By: Erik Gruenwedel

NBC Universal announced it would make select movies and TV programs available on demand to Peer Impact, a peer-to-peer service owned by Wurld Media.

This deal would mark the first content agreement between a major studio and a file-sharing service — the latter a heretofore legal and copyright infringement thorn in the side of the entertainment industry.

Titles would be available for rent for an undisclosed price over a 24-hour period. It is unclear whether Peer Impact users could share the content with other registered users, a typical mainstay of P2P services.

The service will offer such recent Universal releases as The Skeleton Key (with Kate Hudson), Cinderella Man and The 40-Year-Old Virgin; NBC TV programs; and such Universal catalog titles as Ray, The Motorcycle Diaries, Meet the Fockers and The Bourne Supremacy.A Universal source said the P2P service has nothing to do with the home entertainment division. “Think of it as a VOD deal,” the source said, “with typical VOD windows.” Most films will be available on Peer Impact 45 days after they bow on DVD, with about 10 percent coming out sooner, generally after 30 days.

In a statement, Bob Wright, vice chairman of parent GE and chairman and CEO of NBC Universal, said the deal with Wurld Media represents “a significant step forward” in the company goal to capitalize on the “myriad possibilities” of new digital media.

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