Hulu Owners Looking To Make Hulu Even More Useless

from the you-can't-disrupt-yourself dept

It's been almost two years since we suggested it might be impossible for Hulu to survive, given that it was in a bit of a "rock and a hard place" situation. The only way for it to really succeed long-term online was to disrupt the existing TV business. Because, if it didn't do that, others could and would kill Hulu. However, Hulu is owned by the existing TV business, and that means the company can't do what it needs to do. The WSJ is reporting that NBC management is upset with the way Hulu is undercutting its current business model, and is now pushing to change Hulu entirely into an "online cable channel" rather than an aggregator and service for watching television shows. Of course, as many are pointing out, this would almost certainly kill off Hulu.

This is all pretty unfortunate. From a technical standpoint, Hulu appears to be a great service. The only thing really holding it back has been a bunch of owners and licensees who think that the path to the future is to apply all sorts of limitations on what can be done with their content. That's the exact opposite of the path to success these days. Putting limitations on content is not the solution. Enabling people to do more with your content is the solution. Hulu put in place a platform that could do that... but it's owners are choosing to go in a totally different direction, and they don't even seem to realize that they're making a huge mistake.

Filed Under: cable, disruption, innovation, internet, pay tv, tv
Companies: comcast, hulu, nbc universal


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Jan 2011 @ 11:42am

    Re: The pain tolerance of consumer is actually quite high.

    Personally, I prefer convenience. I could hardly care less about the amount of commercials in Hulu. I just like the fact that I can watch a show, instantly, without hassle. I don't torrent much mainly due to the fact that waiting even just 5 minutes to download a show is way too long. I actually think that Hulu offering even more content but with more ads is a valid way to go.

    In fact, most TV shows are basically set up to revolve around the fact that the consumer has a break at certain points of the show. It's actually more jarring to watch some shows without the little pauses which allow the consumer to breath a little and step away from the action.

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