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YouTube cuts three content deals

Universal, Sony BMG and CBS have joined Warner in offering the legal use of their content for YouTube videos.

YouTube announced on Monday partnerships with Universal Music Group, Sony BMG Music Entertainment and CBS that let their artists' music and videos be included in original content posted on YouTube's site.

The media groups will authorize the use of their copyright-protected content through three separate revenue deals with YouTube.

As part of its deal with Universal Music Group, the video-sharing site has agreed to use new technology to filter out any unauthorized content. Universal Music Group owns multiple record labels, including Island Def Jam Music Group, Geffen Records and Verve Music Group.

Monday's announcement did not make clear when the Universal Music Group content will be available for purchase or how much it will cost. Neither YouTube nor Universal Music Group was immediately available for comment.

The Sony BMG deal will be tied to streaming ad revenue.

YouTube's deal with CBS will let people use content such as news, sports and prime-time programming from its CBS brand television channels. The deal covers technology that will allow CBS to find unauthorized content on YouTube and remove it--or choose to keep the content up and stream advertising next to it.

In mid-September, Warner Music Group signed a deal with YouTube to allow use of its music, video content, artist interviews and other original programming. Under that deal, revenue will come from ads streaming next to the videos.

Separately on Monday, Google announced that it signed a deal with Sony BMG and Warner Music Group to offer music video content via ad-supported streaming. Warner Music Group will also allow Google to offer a purchase-for-download option.

YouTube's agreement with Universal Music Group, Sony BMG and CBS comes amid a flurry of to companies such as Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Viacom and News Corp.

YouTube is valued for the vast number of viewers it has managed to attract, in much the same way social-networking site MySpace, owned by News Corp., has developed a large user base. However, YouTube's growing popularity has been accompanied by scrutiny over the unauthorized inclusion of copyright content in many of the videos posted to the site. Concern over copyright issues has led many analysts to question YouTube's long-term viability.