British TV on iTunes – but not in the UK

A while ago, I complained that various British TV shows are being released on DVD overseas but not in the UK. Some of these gaps in our heritage have since been filled; some haven’t.

But now, the same thing’s happening with British TV on iTunes. You can now get At Last The 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set – both precursors to Monty Python – through the US iTunes store. In Britain, it’s not an option, although you can get them on DVD.

What’s up? Are rights issues so much easier to deal with in the US? Are US consumers just more likely to buy TV through iTunes, given it’s cheaper than in the UK? Or are the overseas distributors of British shows just more on the ball than the UK distributors?