Fox, Viacom, CBS and NBC Universal have been in talks over the last few months, according to the source, who asked to remain anonymous. "We are approaching it seriously," the source said. "They are ongoing and preliminary discussions... Everybody wants to figure out the right (online business) model."
Spokespeople from the four networks either did not return calls seeking comment or declined to comment on the talks, which were first reported Saturday by The Wall Street Journal.
The talks deal with complicated matters for the networks--how to put programming on the Internet without cannibalizing TV efforts; how to do that quickly enough to prevent YouTube from profiting; and how to avoid ceding control or branding to partners. ABC parent Walt Disney is not participating in the talks, preferring to go it alone, while the group snubbed a proposal from News Corp., which also owns Fox, to use its MySpace social-networking site as the host of the video, the source said.
in June that allows the video sharing site to host promotional video clips of some NBC shows and with YouTube in October.