NBC to let other Web sites link to NBC video

News anchor Brian Williams arrives for the NBC All-Star Event party at the Hard Rock Cafe in the Universal City area of Los Angeles January 21, 2005. General Electric Co' NBC Universal unit said on Wednesday it will launch "widgets" of television shows like "Meet the Press" and "NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams", allowing users to post NBC content on blogs and Web sites. REUTERS/Lee Celano

NEW YORK (Reuters) - General Electric Co.’s NBC Universal said on Wednesday it will allow personal Web sites to link to video snippets of NBC programs such as “Access Hollywood”, underscoring the Internet as a growing destination for video entertainment.

Independent Web site and blog owners can embed software widgets -- small bits of code that function as dynamic applications when installed on a Web page -- linked to text and video clips from its shows.

Other media companies including Viacom Inc., CBS Corp. and the New York Times Co. also let Web enthusiasts post their programs or content.

Widgets based on television shows initially offered include “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” and “Dateline”, as well as programming from NBC Sports, and, NBC Universal said.

NBC’s widget system is being supported by Clearspring Technologies.

Previously, NBC let users post some of its video shows such as “Saturday Night Live” and “Heroes” onto their own Web sites as part of an overall media industry move to seek new viewers wherever they spend time -- even if it is on a friend’s blog.

To add a particular widget -- also sometimes called a “gadget” -- to a Web page, users can with a few clicks locate the HTML source code of the program and insert it into their own Web sites using standard Web publishing tools.

Widgets have been popularized by Web companies such as Google Inc., Apple Inc., Yahoo Inc. and Microsoft Corp.