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Clear Channel eyes Net distribution deals

Radio conglomerate is looking for as many distribution outlets as it can find for its programming.

NEW YORK--Clear Channel Communications could possibly ink distribution deals with Yahoo or Apple Computer's iTunes music service by next year, a senior executive said on Wednesday.

The U.S. radio conglomerate, which is seeking as many distribution outlets as possible for its programs, has been in talks with Apple, Yahoo and Microsoft during the past year, according to John Hogan, chief executive of Clear Channel's radio division.

"They have yielded more discussions," Hogan said at the Reuters Media and Advertising Summit in New York. "They (the companies) are interested in content."

He said it was possible that a deal could be reached in 2006. Hogan declined to give details about what might be included in any such deal.

This month, Clear Channel said it planned to offer 60-second video clips of radio personality Rush Limbaugh's show that could be played on Apple's iPod digital music and video player.

Based in San Antonio, Texas, Clear Channel operates more than 1,200 radio stations across the United States. The company faces competition from satellite radio services and Apple's iPod digital music player.