Print 40 comment(s) - last by Wolfpup.. on Apr 26 at 11:21 PM

Hulu will be cutting users off from much of its content in May. To gain access to older content, they will now have to pay a subscription fee. More ads are coming soon, as well.
Customers will have to pony up $9.95 in order to see a comprehensive selection of the season's episodes; more ads coming, too

Since March 2008, Hulu has been offering guests a wealth of free TV episodes from parent companies NBC Universal (General Electric), Fox Entertainment Group (News Corp) and ABC Inc. (The Walt Disney Company).  Well, they're not totally free -- you have to watch the occasional ad.  Still, the premise has been a hit, rocketing Hulu to short list of elite websites that includes the likes of YouTube and Facebook.  

The last few months of 2009 were a happy one for Hulu -- it enjoyed its first profitable quarter.  Despite that success, early this year the reoccurring rumor popped up that Hulu was going to start charging subscriptions for at least some of its content.

The only difference is that this time the rumor appears to be true.  Starting in May, Hulu will reportedly air a $9.95 monthly subscription service.  It will continue to offer a bit of free content -- the five most recent episodes of popular shows like Fox's "Glee," "ABC's "Lost" or NBC's "Saturday Night Live".

The crucial difference will be that the current vast library of past episodes and content will be closed off from non-subscribers, accessible only if you pay the monthly fee.

That may be acceptable, considering the average Hulu episode has less commercials than the average TV episode.  But that's the other piece of bad news -- Hulu is reportedly considering upping its number of commercials in the near future as well.

Ultimately the subscription fee isn't horribly high.  However, it will certainly turn some away from the internet's second most popular video site.  And it will make it harder for users to share content, a major source of Hulu's popularity.  

The networks are intent on increasing their profits and bringing the Hulu revenue more in line with the cable offerings.  However, if they load the episodes with commercials, on top of the planned subscription fee, they just might find that internet users aren't quite as interested.

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Will use Hulu less...
By NullSubroutine on 4/22/2010 4:41:02 PM , Rating: 2
The problem with I have with Hulu is probably a result of the media corporations that wanted Hulu to not be "free" and wanted higher royalty rates.

I remember when I found out that there was a new Stargate (Stargate Universe) out and I had been missing it on TV. So what did I do? I went onto Hulu to catch up where I was and now I watch it every Friday night when I'm home. If it had not been for Hulu I would not have started watching the show. No one likes jumping into a show mid season.

Same thing with Lost, I'd never seen it before and starting in February I went on Hulu and watched every single episode (except some of the latest season which wasn't on there and had to watch elsewhere). Now I watch Lost every night it comes on.

By putting past content behind subscriptions the same thing cannot occur in the future. I will either not watch the show, or I will obtain it through another free means. I have no problem watching stuff online where I "pay" them by watching ads, but I am not going to pay money to them just because the media corporations are a bunch of whiny bitches that need to increase profits every quarter to get raises.

RE: Will use Hulu less...
By Reclaimer77 on 4/22/2010 5:03:29 PM , Rating: 1
I remember when I found out that there was a new Stargate (Stargate Universe) out and I had been missing it on TV.

Lol Trust me, you aren't missing much. It's terrible.

I watch it every Friday night when I'm home.

Wow... you're Friday nights are THAT bad huh ?

RE: Will use Hulu less...
By NullSubroutine on 4/23/2010 2:04:43 AM , Rating: 2
I actually like the new SGU, and yes, not being able to find a job makes Friday nights those sorts of things where it is most economical to stay where I'm living (which isn't my home) and not go and do things.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997

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