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Yahoo Inks 3 Yr Exclusive Content Deal With ICC; How Exclusive Is Exclusive?

Yahoo announced a 3 year deal with the International Cricket Council today, covering exclusive content from ICC events – ICC World, Twenty20, ICC Champions Trophy and ICC Cricket World Cup.  But what does Yahoo mean by exclusive? We tried to find out, in an interview with Gopal Krishna, Acting Country Head and VP and Head of Audience (Emerging Markets) for Yahoo.

It’s a 3 year long relationship. We have just launched a brand new cricket site – http://cricket.yahoo.com, and through this relationship, during the time of any major ICC event, the front page of http://cricket.yahoo.com will convert into a co-branded site, and http://iccevents.yahoo.com, which is the official url, will point to it. There we will get all the exclusive images, videos, interviews and player interviews. The intent is to create the destination for cricket lovers to go and get the best content you can get. If Yuvraj Singh hits six sixes in an over, within a very short period, you can play it back on this site.

Have you got the live streaming rights?

We are not doing live streaming, but we are getting live snippets, which will officially be given to Yahoo. This is a global deal, signed by Yahoo India.

How exclusive is this exclusive deal? Is a Cricinfo, Rediff or Indiatimes prevented from carrying any ICC content?

The rights of this type of content will only be with Yahoo. In the past we’ve seen the other side, with videos posted on YouTube. That’s a different matter. Covering the event is anybodys prerogative, that is not under question. The question is – if there are videos given and copyrighted by ICC, those should not be used by other media.

Will you be doing the reportage, or will ICC do the entire setup for you?

Those are matter of details, depending on the event. How do we get access to player interviews etc is a matter of detail…

What I’m wondering is – will you be bearing the cost of content creation as well?

I don’t think we can comment on that. From your vantage point, it’s about two great brands – the ICC which has the rights to major tournaments, and access to best content, and Yahoo, that has perhaps the largest reach, coming together and building a site and an online experience which changes the way people consume Cricket online.

So would I be wrong if I say that it’s primarily a marketing deal, because the website you create will be promoted, and the cost of exclusive content creation..could be yours..and exclusivity is only for the content which the ICC creates for you, and other media players can also come into play. It’s not really exclusivity in terms of content…

No I wouldn’t agree with that. Here’s the reason why – because, if the movie gets released on Friday evening, every reviewer as the right to post it. But, can anybody go and take a copy of that movie? That’s where the distinction. The content is legally available only to us.

Is there a timespan, wherein others will not be allowed to publish content?

I’m not aware of that.

Is there a minimum guarantee deal, or a revenue share involved? If you look at it, in case of Live Current Media and the IPL, it was a $50 million dollar deal over 10 years.

ICC and Yahoo are not commenting on the details of the deal.

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