Here's where things get sticky: The BBC posted clips of its Top Gear and BBC Food programs on its YouTube channel, each clip less than ten minutes. According to The Telegraph, it didn't check with ATVOD about as to its obligations. The ATVOD checked out the clips and said 'these are television-like, so you owe us £2,900 for each channel (that's about $4,600 USD).' The BBC said that clips of less than ten minutes – a fraction of the length of the program on television – are short-form content being watched by people on the move, and thus not television-like.
The ATVOD responded to this by basically saying "bollocks." Since the BBC content in question satisfies the ATVOD's entire checklist for matters it regulates, the clips in question are "television-like" enough to justify the fee. The BBC joins a long line of media outlets including newspapers and magazines questioning ATVOD decisions, such as rulings that a company that makes a show is responsible for the editorial content of an on-demand show and needs to pay ATVOD as opposed to the broadcaster of the show paying ATVOD. It isn't just big guns that ATVOD goes after, either, its call for licensing fees having shut down more than one independent site offering content like amateur short films. The BBC is appealing, and it looks like clarification will have to come from the UK courts.