No More Free Hulu?

Published 4 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 4:27 pm,

hulu not for free logo No More Free Hulu?

Oh Internet, say it ain’t so!

Hulu – my utopia of free TV online – may soon become another run-of-the-buck paid subscription site (see header image)! (Sigh) It was only a matter of time, really…

Broadcasting & Cable brings us this chilling news, which supposedly originated from the mouth of News Corp. Deputy Chairman Chase Carey, who said during the Onscreen Media Summit that:

“It’s time to start getting paid for broadcast content online…I think a free model is a very difficult way to capture the value of our content. I think what we need to do is deliver that content to consumers in a way where they will appreciate the value. Hulu concurs with that, it needs to evolve to have a meaningful subscription model as part of its business.”

Aw heck, we all knew this day was coming when we’d hear those words spoken about our beloved Hulu – doesn’t it always happen that way with our favorite sites?

However… In my vast Internet experience our favorite sites stop being “our favorite sites” pretty soon after they start asking for membership fees. I know that more than a few of you out there have woken up one day to find your favorite online pop-in spot suddenly requiring you provide them a credit card number, sending you back to the search engine nexus typing in the words “free, streaming…”

…Aaaand I suspect that tradition won’t be changing for the small pool of TV shows and movies that  Hulu currently offers. Despite all those clever commercials with celebrities posing as aliens using Hulu to mush our brains, there’s still enough solid cerbral material left in this guy’s skull to determine that Hulu would need to expand its range of content much, much, wider for me to consider buying into the service. I’m talking:

  • More popular cable series (even some premium channel shows for “platinum” members who pay extra).
  • Every network primetime show of the current season.
  • More GOOD movies (Better picks of old films; same-day and direct-to-video releases (at discounted cost); premium channel releases for platinum members).
  • Same-day airings of primetime TV shows (with ads, if necessary).
  • Bigger TV show archives (for when I go on an Arrested Development or It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia binge).
  • Exclusive “first looks” for movie trailers and making of featurettes.
  • Music videos and Popular news clips added to the lineup.
  • Make all content accessible to any digital mobile device or game system (ipods, smart phones, Xbox Live).
  • Embed and sharing capabilities on all shows/movies (at least clips).
  • Everything in HD.

Now THAT – combined with Hulu’s great interface – would be a service I would pay for.

While I agree with Carey in the sense that it’s time for companies to have a fair shot at pursuing profits in the online market, I do think said companies are still floating  archaic ideas about how to convert their “digital dimes” into digi-dollars.

hulu logo No More Free Hulu?

The Internet has always been based on one fundamental principle: Accomplish a lot with little effort. So, if I can have access to a bunch of movies and shows I watch; get sneak peeks on the hottest music videos or movie trailers; keep up with reports on the latest news clips everyone is talking about; spend my rainy weekends marathoning through old favorites; see everything in crisp HD and share it all with my friends… Why not fork out a reasonable fee to accomplish all that?

Try selling me Hulu as it stands now, and I’m going to tell you the names of all the TV network sites where you can watch the same shows for free (hint: just throw a “.com” behind the name of your favorite network) – or maybe the names of sites that will stream old movie favorites, legally, for free. Basically, I’m going to tell you that I really don’t need Hulu all that much after all…

What about you – is Hulu something you’d pay to keep? Or does the notion of shelling out for it make you say “Thanks  but no thanks!”

Source: Broadcasting & Cable

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TAGS: 30 rock, dollhouse, flashforward, fringe, glee, house, lie to me, the office

53 Comments

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  1. @greenknight33

    “.. not enbough people care..”

    Ain’t that the truth. The best and clearest way to tel today just how badly informed the Amercian public is, can be shown in a few simple questions and the response you get.

    To tell if someone is a part of the conditioned masses ask them either or both of the following:

    “Hye, who won last wek on Look Whos Dancing Now”

    OR

    “Who won the game Saturday/Sunday between ..””

    Not only wil you get the answer but in the case of Look Whos dancing they’ll be able to tell you what most if not ever couple was wearing and for the game you will almost certainly be able to get a break down of the game and of course, game stats.

    Then ask them the following:

    “What do yo think about the President Delcaring a National Ermergency this weekend?”

    Don’t be suprised if the answer is sonething along thge lines of “huh? Uhhh, No that can be right b/c they didn’t cut in on any of my shows this weekend. You must of read one of them there conspiracy nut jobs. The ones who believe conspiracies are real.”

    When you do, I know its tempting but you may shatter their world when you you provide them with the actual definition of a cosnpiracy, proving that not only are they real but that chances are high they been involved in at least 1 conspiracy in their life since it only takes 2 persons agreeing to do something in secret that is illegal to qualify as a conspiracy. So working with at least 1 other person to copy a CD/DVD, or download some movie without paying or even to agree with the spouse to not let the cable company know you are still getting service (for free) from where it wasn’t disconnected when the previous tenant moved out.

    Even the defition Conspiracy Theory, as listed at http://www.wisegeeks.com is explained not in an unbiased and literal way but with key words and phrases so as to leave teh reader with a visual image of a conspiracy theroy believer as an X-Files fan who thinks ALiens run the country and took out Kennedy. They don’t bother the moention the actual definition of a conspiracy. At least websters still lists this correctly.

  2. UPDATE:

    Sorry guys about the typ but that should be http://www.wisegeek.com. Please don;t click on the wrong link. Man I wish there was a way to edit an existing post you’ve made.

  3. @BlueCollarCritic, (nice to read your comments today btw, I’m glad more ppl are speaking out and waking up)

    I would like to sum up your assessment of tv and media if I may,,, I was thinking about this today,,,

    (IMO), Controled Media ie: tv shows, main stream news, bad movies, tmz, etc are all using lower vibrational states/frequencies to disconnect people from a higher state of awareness… This is what’s happening with reality tv and you can see why tptb are using it to keep us from learning the truth about our reality and our world…
    ^
    ^
    @GK333, the nwo can be defeated in an instant if people realize that they control there own destiny… This starts with the common soldier when he’s asked to defend a false leadership and carry out illegal orders. And this doesn’t end in violence if we all come together…

    I will never declare victory to these insecure negative scumbags…

  4. Read “Brave New World Revisited.” An interesting conversation I had on-line with a Person who helped author the latest Webster Dictionary. I took issue with a word that clearly meant one thing for better that 45 years. He responded with quotes from two recent popular magazine Op Eds sighting usage of the word that was shoe horned (sic)to mean something else. He said that more than justified the change! Society today has nothing on Huxley or Orwell…

  5. I don’t understand. Love film and TV, but refuse to pay for it? Film and TV cannot be made without it being paid for. If an audience refuses to pay, then where does the budget come from? Are we to have advertising breaks in the middle of films? Even then we could not raise the budget for a film. Do you guys have a solution?

  6. Its all part of the dumbing down process Old Man,,,

    “Conspiracy” is no longer a term describing a hidden plan done in secret by more than one person.

    The Media has turned “Conspiracy” into a word describing the fringe or the ufo fanatics…

  7. Oh yeah that and hundreds of other words. It’s all in Orwell and Huxley’s books.

  8. Old Man,,,
    Ironic how George Orwell’s novel “1984″ was challenged for being “Pro Communist” back 20 years ago…

  9. @Adam says “I don’t understand. Love film and TV, but refuse to pay for it? Film and TV cannot be made without it being paid for. If an audience refuses to pay, then where does the budget come from? Are we to have advertising breaks in the middle of films? Even then we could not raise the budget for a film. Do you guys have a solution?”

    They do have ways currently to pay for all of these even with the illegal downloading. Don’t believe the hype bout increased losses due to Piracy. Its not that Piracy doesn’t occur but that the Piracy method changes over time. Sure it is easier for people these days to download and use un-paid for copies of content but people still obtained pirated copies of content before the internet came about and even before the digital age and the CD Burner.

    When the cassette tape first hit teh market the Music Labels cried it would destroy them by heavily cutting into their profits yet Music Labels continued to make more money over the next few decades. The decreased level in sales these days has more to do with the economic situation then Piracy. Would there be more sells of music & video content if the illegal downloading was stopped by a total lock down of the internet? Sure it would but it would not be a one to one difference. The same number of downloads per year would not magically transfer to purchased copies of the same material.

    The Media Content Providers from Music Labels to Movie studios cry fowl and theft becuase for so long they were use to market manipulation and control and they just can’t grasp the idea that they shouldn’t still get whatever they want for whatever they are selling. If life were truly fair (as the reason they give for why internet access must be controlled to prevent file sharing and make it fair for them) then we would be able to sue them for wasting our time and money when they dupe us into buying some of the junk they market to us.

    For many years we paid an artifically high price for Musci CDs and Video DVD’s and in the cas eof music albums, we often got only a few good songe and a lot of fluff for that money. If that were not the case then music singles be they cassette singles or CD singles would not cost so much.

  10. @Old man says “Read “Brave New World Revisited.” An interesting conversation I had on-line with a Person who helped author the latest Webster Dictionary. I took issue with a word that clearly meant one thing for better that 45 years. He responded with quotes from two recent popular magazine Op Eds sighting usage of the word that was shoe horned (sic)to mean something else. He said that more than justified the change! Society today has nothing on Huxley or Orwell…”

    Truly unbelievable. So the only criteria tehse days for defining a word are how it’s used in the common pop culture.

  11. BlueCollarCritic,

    Bingo. Social use of words or socially acceptable use of means seem to redefine how things are perceived these days.

    What the old school approach would call cheating, stealing or improper use seems to have present day momentum on it’s side and we are just left in its dust.

    Take a look at how people address each other these days… I’ve always used,
    persons name,

    But Twitter has changed that so people are using
    @persons name…

    at least I think it came from Twitter.. that’s where I first saw it. Now it seems, that even in email, everyone is using “@person” rather than the classic method…

    That’s been my experience to date. Eh… Bruce shoulder shrugs and goes about his day now… off into the old-school sunset.

  12. Yeah 790 Orwell was a far, far better critic than political solution provider. I never looked around to see what he thought of Stalin after all the purges.

  13. I’m cudgeling my brain to come up with a single example of a *free* website that successfully converted itself into a viable *subscriber* website. . . .and I simply can’t.

    I can think of any number of sites that have *failed* to manage that trick. . . *that* list includes about 50% of the media companies on Earth, ranging from the New York Times on down to Napster.

    Frankly, if NBC and FOX want to turn Hulu into a subscriber-funded enterprise, then. . . really, the only thing I can think of that might feasibly work for them is. . . PORN!

    Not *literal* porn, of course. . . that’s a bit too tawdry even for Fox; and too desperate even for NBC; but I think that their best bet is to shoot sexier, more violent, uncensored and extended “R-Rated versions” of their existing shows, and put *THOSE* behind a subscriber wall.

    Think it won’t work? Then ask yourself: how much would you pay to see Eliza Dushku and Summer Glau in an episode of Dollhouse? Do I hear you saying “nothing, because I can see it for free on TV?” Well and good–now: how much would you pay to see Eliza Dushku and Summer Glau *topless*, in the *extended director’s cut* of the same episode?

  14. I like Hulu for the ability to tune into episodes of some of my favorite shows which are no longer on. Also I like catching episodes of current shows that I may have missed at my leisure. But if they want to charge – then I have to agree – they are going to have to kick it up several notches as far as content and quality. Otherwise it’s on to the next “Free Site” Peace Out Hulu!

  15. I have to say, you hit the nail right on the head. If I have to pay for online viewing, I'll go back to Blockbuster or watch video On Demand on cable which I already pay for. Thanks, but no thanks.

  16. I have to say, you hit the nail right on the head. If I have to pay for online viewing, I'll go back to Blockbuster or watch video On Demand on cable which I already pay for. Thanks, but no thanks.

  17. I can’t wait for more Visitors episodes it has to be one of the best shows from ABC!

  18. I went back to Hulu after an absence of a few months and now I can only watch 90 sec previews-mo more free movies.

    Buh bye Hulu.

  19. Oh well, I guess it is bye bye to HULU for me, used it occasionally and did enjoy it.

  20. What’s up, every time i used to check webpage posts here early in the break of day, since i like to gain knowledge of more and more.

  21. I often go and check out Hulu to see if there’s a show there that Netflix hasn’t got… then I remember that basically every decent show worth watching needs a subscription and I am further reminded that even if I do pay the membership subscription fee there is STILL advertisements… as you say, there are plenty of free places to find these shows to stream.. just not as reliable.

    I’d happily pay a monthly sub but not if it’s going to have adverts..

  22. you don;t get something for nothing in the long run. Since everyone is charging a fee
    maybe an antenna is an alternative you can pull in a lot of free channels with movies and lots of extra local channels etc.. you can buy indoor and outdoor also attic antennas ,most are reasonable.
    I am pricing them now .I don.t want to pay for satellite anymore.the movies for the most part is all repeats .We will be saving a lot of $.

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