Powered by i.TV
October 1, 2014

Could the rest of the world get Hulu... or at least the U.K.?

by Danny Gallagher, posted May 25th 2009 9:02AM
Hulu.comA lot of readers outside of the United States regularly express their disgust with us over our use of Hulu's videos on some of our posts.

Well, I've got some good news ... for 1/100ths of the rest of the world.

Hulu could be coming to the United Kingdom and include more programming than what's available in the States. So if you Brits have been hankering for some Facts of Life but don't feel like the necessary humiliation of having people see you buy it at the local video store, you're in luck.

The Telegraph reports the service could launch as early as September and include more than just the American fare of your favorite television programming. Shows from the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 could be on board if the talks all go well.

So what's been the hold-up so far? Good ol' advertising revenues. They get in the way of everything on TV, don't they? If it weren't for advertising, we wouldn't have commercial breaks, show interruptions or that Burger King ad featuring Sir Mix-a-Lot that haunts my dreams and makes my brain wish it could leap out of my head.

Hulu wants control over Channel 4 and ITV's ad revenues on the site, and that model doesn't sit well with them, so talks are at a standstill. I hope the deal goes through and not just because everyone can join in the joy that is Hulu. If the deal is inked, that means we might get some of the Brit's programming in the States. Finally, I can enjoy shows like QI without having to sneak them through customs in uncomfortable places.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

12 Comments

Filter by:
chrome

What drives me crazy about the whining over geocaching is that people forget that Hulu exists because of advertising dollars. It's a free service that makes money by selling ads to U.S.-based companies. They make no money off non-American viewers because they can't use those page hit stats when selling ad space; in fact, they lose money via the high bandwidth costs. Does the whole model of internet video sharing need to be changed to accommodate worldwide audiences? Of course. A show like, say, Fringe has fans everywhere who want to watch. But advertising pays the bills -- both to produce the episodes and to stream them online -- and I won't blame Hulu for using things like geocaching to cut costs and make themselves more profitable.

And before someone throws an "ugly American" label my way ... I adore quite a few British shows like Doctor Who, but in the past (haven't tried lately) I've been blocked from watching bbc.co.uk's streaming video content. Makes sense to me. I have no inherent "right" to watch those videos and suck up bandwidth because I don't pay for the TV licence that helps fund the programming. ITV isn't obligated to make their shows freely available to me because I won't be buying any of the products their UK sponsors have paid to advertise.

May 25 2009 at 1:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to chrome's comment
WhoElseButME

Wait isn't UK the 52nd State?

How about some love for the rest of the world? Well, I guess that's why God created torrents!

May 25 2009 at 12:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ChaoZ

Canada next, please?

May 25 2009 at 12:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jim

Yay! The world can finally appreciate Arrested Development! It was left in the graveyard slots over here, and the DVDs are £30 ($50) per season, so while there is a huge appetite for it, and indeed loads of comedy fans here love it, the supply has been cut off. Here's to more fans!

May 25 2009 at 11:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bob Jones

Programming like the Facts of Life is what will make or break Hulu in the U.K. We can, as the above commenter said, already see all the BBC (without ads), ITV, C4 stuff that we want to.

Hulu U.K. should focus on more obscure American programming. Picket Fences is one show on the U.S. Hulu, that I'm dying to see again.

May 25 2009 at 10:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Bob Jones's comment
tingrin87

as an american, i'd prefer it if Hulu did highlight some UK shows, since torrents of said shows are not as popular or easy to find as US shows... and i already have a TV to watch the US shows.

May 25 2009 at 8:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Catherine

When will we be able to see UK TV content on Hulu? The UK has some fantastic programs and it is refreshing to see more realistic characters and complex plotlines in some of the British TV shows. Rather than make inferior remakes, please gives us the real thing.... Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes, The Eleventh Hour, The Bill, Inspector George Gently, The Fixer, Being Human, and many many more.

May 25 2009 at 10:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Catherine's comment
Jason B

The Bill? Please. That show is garbage.

May 27 2009 at 11:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Thomas

Having the BBC, Channel 4 and ITV on Hulu wouldn't mean much, we can watch them already. You can also watch some Sky, Five and others to varying degrees of quality. Admittedly having them all in one place might be more convenient, but what Hulu would really need is access to all those channels that don't have proper online viewing services. I can imagine the other main problem apart from advertising would be the rights.

I think the BBC are in the strongest position here, they produce the most new stuff and already have a high quality service which they can only add to, other companies are going to be fighting it out over who gets to show what. I'm not holding my breath.

May 25 2009 at 10:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Follow Us

From Our Partners