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?

  • espedair

    Your right to ask about iTunes? I’m not sure what thr deal is but for example I wanted to load some west wing onto my poid.. never seen it.. it was advertised as being on there.. it is but only series 2?! Why? Surely you’d want the first lot.
    Its a bit random for my liking.. and sure there are other cult goodies like the V series, but how far does that go? Not very is my answer!
    Why no films? Why no wide range of TV. I can see why people out on the interweb are tempted to covert thing themselves, right or wrong, give them more choice and maybe they wouldn’t.

  • The UK store is very anaemic compared to the US store. We’re not going to be getting the new movie rentals system, for one thing – at least not until they’ve tested it in the US.
    As for West Wing, V, etc, I suspect that’s Warner Bros being ponces. They probably reckon season two of The West Wing was the best (well, it did have Emily Procter as Ainsley in it) so figured that would sell the best. Not useful for anyone who hasn’t seen the show though.

  • That’s odd. I’ve just scanned the iTunes store on my Apple TV and they do have the first season of The West Wing, as well as the second. Clearly, they’ve been paying attention.