NBC and Fox Go Hulu-ing Together
November 1, 2007 11:19 AM
House's Dr. Allison Cameron says "Men should grow up." (Occam's Razor, Season 1)
The diagnosis is: a new service that offers on demand television on the internet, for free.
NBC-Universal and News Corp.'s Fox
announced this week
that their new service Hulu is beginning its beta test.
This service will aim to broadcast television and movies on the Internet, as they would be on TV, with revenues paid for by advertising spots.
Popular shows such as “House,” “The Simpsons” and “The Office” will all be available to watch.
You can sign up for an account and get in on the hulu-balu
Besides free access to movies and TV, the services aims to allows users to repost content outside the main site, similar to YouTube. Users will have full legal permission to either embed an entire clip in a link or on the web, or embedded a specific clip from the content.
This more open permissions will likely lead to less headaches on Fox and NBC's part. YouTube, which doesn't have such permissions and Google Video have both been blasted for piracy,
in a recent
Google was sued by Viacom earlier this year, for allegedly knowingly
allowing the posting
on its video websites of certain clips from TV networks such as Comedy Central.
Likely, the clips will cost more in order to make them this open, but Hulu only offers a small selection of premium television and cinema content, whereas YouTube offers some TV clips, but also offers a deluge quirky home videos. The markets, while easily mistaken, are quite different, so the business model of advertising spot revenue for more open content seems to make sense.
The site will soon also be receiving support from Sony and MGM who have promised their own movie and TV content.
Some say that NBC's strong push to launch this service is an attempt to retaliate at Apple over their failed iTunes contract negotiations. It was
that NBC was hoping to get a cut of every iPod sold, as Apple "sold them on [NBC's] back".
Fox, however is for the most part pleased with its iTunes contract, by all indications. It is simply hoping to expand its offerings and reach a broader audience.
readers may be excited by the inclusion of NBC's Chuck, and soon Sci-fi Channel shows, such as Lost in Space.
Whether Hulu becomes a hit is yet to be seen, but the concept is certainly intriguing.
"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet. A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
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