BBC Worldwide has struck a deal with MySpace to make short clips of Dr Who, Top Gear and other BBC-produced content available to users of the site.

The deal is only the second time the BBC has agreed to host its content on websites owned by third-parties. Last year the BBC launched its own YouTube channel on the Google-owned video hosting site.

Tuning in to BBC MySpace

Under the terms of the agreement the BBC will set up its own channel on MySpace's dedicated video service, MySpace TV. It's estimated that up to 150 clips will be made available.

Users will be able to view these videos on the dedicated BBC Worldwide channel or embed them into their own pages and share them with friends. The BBC and MySpace will reportedly be sharing the advertising revenue collected as a result of the venture.

Content for the site will be pulled from across the BBC spectrum and divided up into seven individual categories: Comedy; Drama; Sci-fi; Weird and Wonderful; Love Earth; Famous Faces; and Top Gear.

People expecting whole episodes are likely to be disappointed though. Due to 'first rights' licensing constraints the BBC has said that each posted clip will last no longer than two minutes.

Social TV advertising?

Although it sounds suspiciously like TV advertising, there seems little doubt that cult and youth-orientated BBC programmes like The Mighty Boosh, The Catherine Tate Show and even Top Gear will prove popular with MySpace's predominantly young user-base. The viewing stats on the BBC's YouTube channel confirm as much.

However, if the BBC move is about enhancing its reputation with the 'MySpace generation' as well as securing additional advertising revenue, then one can only hope that Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps doesn't make the cut.