Even though CBS (NYSE:CBS) airs The Amazing Race, it apparently knows that the real amazing race is taking place in cyberspace these days. The media conglomerate is hooking up with YouTube for a deal that finds both companies sharing in ad revenues on CBS content.

This isn't the first time that one of the major networks has hit up YouTube for support. Over the summer, General Electric's (NYSE:GE) NBC partnered with YouTube to help feature clips from shows like The Office and 30 Rock. Rather than pad its video streams with obtrusive video ads, YouTube has taken the more consumer-friendly approach of running conventional ads off to the side of its video player.

The new CBS deal is different than the one YouTube worked with NBC, which was mostly a promotional vehicle for NBC's fall prime-time lineup. CBS will have an incentive to provide compelling content because actual ad revenue lies in the balance.

CBS will also be the first network to tap into YouTube's technology that ferrets out unauthorized uploads of CBS-owned content. Last month, YouTube struck a deal with Warner Music Group (NYSE:WMG) to help monetize the exposure of Warner's record-label artists on the site. Here we have YouTube once again doing the right thing by presenting itself as an incremental revenue stream worth paddling, instead of letting itself be treated like some litigant pinata.

As we speculate about the merits of Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) possibly gobbling up YouTube, it's clear that YouTube is starting to broker deals as if it relishes its independence. Even if it means more mouths to feed, YouTube has aspirations of growing into an even beefier video-clip enabler. Google may soon discover that its biggest competitor in its bid for YouTube may be YouTube itself.

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz isn't a YouTube junkie, but he does find himself on the site more often than he would care to admit. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. The Fool has a disclosure policy.