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YouTube eyes streaming rental agreement

YouTube wants to offer rentals of full-length films at roughly the same time studios release them on DVD.

It’s possible that the studio response will amount to, “How’s does it feel to want?” But it’s worth noting that Warner Bros., Universal and others have begun testing the simultaneous release of films on DVD and cable pay-per-view.

So it wouldn’t be much of a stretch for studios to allow YouTube to stream new-release titles as well — provided the traditionally free Web site would pay for them. Cable companies generally offer movies for $3.99 a viewing, with studios getting a cut of PPV proceeds under their revenue-sharing agreements with Comcast, Time Warner Cable and others.

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