Thursday, July 24, 2008

The rise of Hulu

Something I didn't mention in my recent article for the Guild's magazine about the future of online drama is the launch of TV streaming site, Hulu.

hulu screengrab
Founded in March 2007 by NBC Universal and News Corp, and currently only available in the United States, it offers free streamed network TV shows (both full length and excerpts) and even full length movies.

Essentially, then, it's along the same lines as the BBC's iPlayer, and the success of both services has shown the willingness of the public to watch TV online.

In The L.A. Times, Scott Collins offers an assessment of Hulu and considers whether it is a threat to conventionally broadcast TV.

There's also a response to the article on the Writers Guild Of America West website.
If Collins misses anything it is in his contrast of Hulu on the computer with the TV set. These are not the competitors he poses, but rather stops along an evolutionary path. For replays of traditional media content, computer viewing is just the first incarnation of Internet delivery and it may not be the most significant one. As Apple TV and the new Roku Netflix set top box demonstrate (with pay television business models), the next step for the Internet is migration from the computer screen to the TV screen.

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