Sony launches rival to YouTube

Sony is to launch a video-sharing rival to YouTube tomorrow, the consumer goods giant has said.

Sony will initially launch the site in Japan, making PlayStation3 maker Sony the latest to challenge the Google-owned YouTube.

Last month, News Corporation and NBC Universal agreed to form a partnership to take on YouTube. The two US media giants plan to make thousands of hours of programming, movies and clips available from the extensive back catalogue of TV shows and films that the two own.

After launching the service in Japan, Sony said it planned to roll it out internationally after gauging its initial impact in its home market.

YouTube is currently under fire from all sides. In early March, Viacom said it was to sue Google and the content sharing site for over $1bn (£517m), claiming the search engine firm has committed "massive copyright infringement".

In a statement, Viacom claims that around 160,000 unauthorised clips of Viacom programmes, including 'The Daily Show' and 'South Park', have been made available for free through YouTube and have been viewed around 1.5bn times in total.

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