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Author Topic: Hulu to start charging
Lyrhawn
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Subscription based service to begin next year

Any one plan to stick with Hulu after they start charging? Most of what I watch on there I can get by going directly to the site of the channel in question. It might make what few shows I watch harder to see, but I don't imagine I'll be paying for it.

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Sean Monahan
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How disappointing. I doubt I will stick with it. I mainly use it because I'm too lazy to program my VCR, but I will endeavor to do so if Hulu starts charging.

I'm not sure I understand what he means when he says, "I think a free model is a very difficult way to capture the value of our content."

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Samprimary
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The internet model of the google generation is "free or gtfo"  hulu either doesn't get this or realizes it but has no ability to keep providing for free and awaits the crash.
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Lyrhawn
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Hulu is really just a matter of convenience. A lot of the stuff on there is free on television when it first airs, Hulu just lets you watch it at your leisure.

Maybe they could charge for some of their obscure content that's hard to find, but for the stuff that just aired for free the day before? I don't think that's being unfairly demanding of free content.

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Valentine014
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quote:
Any one plan to stick with Hulu after they start charging?
Nope.

quote:
I mainly use it because I'm too lazy to program my VCR...
Sean, what year are you living in?
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Lyrhawn
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I still use my VCR too.
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J-Put
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Arrr, if Hulu starts chargin' I can always find some other way o' gettin' me entertainment without payin' fer 't...
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Blayne Bradley
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I cant even use it in Canada.
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scifibum
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I sort of figured the reason I was putting up with the frequent advertisements was so the watchin' would be free.

quote:
I'm not sure I understand what he means when he says, "I think a free model is a very difficult way to capture the value of our content."
It sounds awfully close to "if we don't charge for it, our users won't realize how awesome it is." But he probably means that they aren't making enough money.
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Jon Boy
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Yeah, it seemed to me that what he really meant was "I think a free model is a very difficult way to make money."
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Yeah, it seemed to me that what he really meant was "I think a free model is a very difficult way to make money."
This is not a repeat from ten years ago.
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Sean Monahan
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quote:
Originally posted by Valentine014:
quote:
I mainly use it because I'm too lazy to program my VCR...
Sean, what year are you living in?
Yeah, I know I should get a DVR, but I really watch so little tv that I can't justify it in good conscience.
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scifibum
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Here's a longer quote (bolding mine):

quote:
While speaking at a recent Broadcasting & Cable summit Carey announced his plans for Hulu: 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.
It looks like he is saying "if we don't charge for it, our users won't realize how awesome it is." I doubt that's what he really thinks, but it's kind of funny that he chose to try to spin it this way.
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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Blayne Bradley:
I cant even use it in Canada.

Nor in CZR- chances are now we'll never get it.
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scifibum
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Don't you people know how to use proxy servers?

Mostly kidding. I have done it to watch itv.com, but it was not worth it.

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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
It looks like he is saying "if we don't charge for it, our users won't realize how awesome it is." I doubt that's what he really thinks, but it's kind of funny that he chose to try to spin it this way.
Speaking generally, and not about this specific situation, there's a lot of truth to that idea. People do appreciate more what they have to sacrifice for.
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Carrie
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
Any one plan to stick with Hulu after they start charging?

No.
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scifibum
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
quote:
It looks like he is saying "if we don't charge for it, our users won't realize how awesome it is." I doubt that's what he really thinks, but it's kind of funny that he chose to try to spin it this way.
Speaking generally, and not about this specific situation, there's a lot of truth to that idea. People do appreciate more what they have to sacrifice for.
And maybe he's right about hulu.com, but the thing is, nobody should be trying to optimize user appreciation. [Smile]
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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by J-Put:
Arrr, if Hulu starts chargin' I can always find some other way o' gettin' me entertainment without payin' fer 't...

Do they even have Hulu in Scotland?
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Raymond Arnold
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http://mediamemo.allthingsd.com/20091023/how-much-will-you-have-to-pay-for-hulu-nothing-how-much-will-you-pay-for-hulu-plus-good-question/
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Orincoro
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Sounds like Hulu is actually planning to stay the same, but add a subscription model "premium" service on. I see no problem with that.
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Christine
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
Sounds like Hulu is actually planning to stay the same, but add a subscription model "premium" service on. I see no problem with that.

If that's the case, then I don't see the problem. Depending upon the fees, I might even be willing to pay for a *commercial free* subscription service.
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Goody Scrivener
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I watch shows on Hulu because I cannot afford digital television at all right now and felt like I was paying way too much for what little usable (IMHO) content I was receiving when I was able to pay for it. The DTV converter box is constantly losing access to local channels - often mid-program once I do get it retuned - and I generally don't have the energy to try and fight with it. I would love to have an a la carte option where I could pick and choose just the channels I would actually watch, but seeing as many of my desired channels have exclusive contracts with one delivery form (i.e. Comcast, Dish Network, etc), I don't see that ever happening. And until I'm hired again, I wouldn't be able to take advantage of it even if it were to become available.

If Hulu sets up a subscription program that requires payment to watch current content (i.e. this week's broadcast TV episodes), I'll walk away. I simply cannot afford a pay-to-watch structure. I would not object to them increasing the number or duration of commercial breaks within reason if that would increase their revenues enough to not require a subscription fee.

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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
quote:
It looks like he is saying "if we don't charge for it, our users won't realize how awesome it is." I doubt that's what he really thinks, but it's kind of funny that he chose to try to spin it this way.
Speaking generally, and not about this specific situation, there's a lot of truth to that idea. People do appreciate more what they have to sacrifice for.
True story, the doctor I worked under out of charity offered a free seminar on mental health, and nobody came. A few months later she offered the exact same seminar and charged admission, loads of people showed up.

----

I'm not sure if this is happening because Hulu isn't making much money, if any, or if they think that now that it's super popular people will love it enough to pay a subscription fee.

I use Hulu all the time and I recognize the commercials are essential for the site to continue, I don't find Hulu to be fantastic enough to warrant paying a subscription fee, that's why I have a cable bill included in my rent.

I wonder if Hulu offered PPV or HBO programming if that might not make it more palatable.

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Raymond Arnold
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I will note that I do NOT have cable and do not plan on having it ever, because I can get everything I want for free online in one form of another. If there was one website that had all TV shows available the SAME DAY they came out (instead of the next day), and was priced reasonably, and had no ads, I could be persuaded to pay for it. I'm not sure how much I'd be willing to pay but it would definitely be a service worth paying for.
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
True story, the doctor I worked under out of charity offered a free seminar on mental health, and nobody came. A few months later she offered the exact same seminar and charged admission, loads of people showed up.
That sounds very believable.
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Lisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I still use my VCR too.

Video... capture... I give up. What is it?
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Christine
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
quote:
True story, the doctor I worked under out of charity offered a free seminar on mental health, and nobody came. A few months later she offered the exact same seminar and charged admission, loads of people showed up.
That sounds very believable.
A few years ago my husband and I had a garage sale. Among the items for sale was a TV that we marked for $10, but were perfectly willing to give away. As noon approached and no one had taken it, we latched onto an older man who was looking purposefully at the large TV (that we didn't want to have to throw away or move) and told him he could have it for free. Instantly, he was suspicious and wanted to know what was wrong with it. Nothing...If nothing's wrong with it, how much do you want for it? So we told him $15 (it said $10 on the sign) and he happily paid it.
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Lisa:
quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I still use my VCR too.

Video... capture... I give up. What is it?
I think I saw it at IKEA, its like a little stand you use to raise up your other electronics.
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katharina
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If Hulu had content I wanted, then i wouldn't mind paying a little bit, as long as I could pay piecemeal.

I am perfectly happy to pay little bit and get only content I want rather than pay a huge amount and get a lot of crap I don't (Hello there, cable!). So, that's fine.

Hulu's main problem is that they don't have The Big Bang Theory, Gilmore Girls, The West Wing, Northern Exposure, any of the British shows, and their House episodes show up eight days late. If those things were rectified, the quality was good enough I could watch them on my television, and Hulu started charging for each episode, I'd happily pay it.

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Christine:
Nothing...If nothing's wrong with it, how much do you want for it? So we told him $15 (it said $10 on the sign) and he happily paid it.

Reminds me of Czechs- they won't take anything for free. They're still cheap, but nothing's free- ketchup at McDonald's costs 25 cents a packet, for example.
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Christine
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I haven't paid for cable in years and I haven't missed it. I actually can't believe we (the consumers) are continuing to let ourselves get ripped off by those companies...selling us hundreds of channels with nothing on for an outrageous price. Four years ago, when I had cable, I calculated that I was roughly spending $40 a month for 2 hours a week of TV -- that's $5 an hour. And that was one of those introductory cushy deals. They were about to double that and cut some of my channels. Forget it!

Oh, and then to top it off, they show commercials.

Why does anyone pay for cable?

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katharina
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Sports. Without live games, cable would die.
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Christine
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Still seems like an outrageous price to pay for sports. Maybe if we all put our feet down at the same time and canceled, they'd consider a fairer pricing structure to woo us all back.
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katharina
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I don't watch sports, so my boycott would mean nothing. For those who do, it seems to be worth it.

For those for whom it isn't worth it, I applaud the arrival of Netflix et al. and welcome Hulu to their ranks.

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FlyingCow
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Sports is a big reason. I probably watch 2 hours of ESPN/ESPN2 per day... and that's when there isn't a game on. Throw in 2-3 games per week, and you're up over 20+ hours per week (at least during college football/basketball seasons), just on sports stations.

Throw in Comedy Central, Discovery, and History... and I'm set.

Outside of that, I don't generally watch the 100+ other cable channels.

Then again, I don't use Hulu, so a pay model doesn't bother me much.

As an aside, the cable "triple play" option in our area is not bad - cable/phone/internet/DVR for $100/month, plus two free movie tickets per week (which works out to about $70+/month if you use them)

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katharina
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I have a BlackBerry and no land line, so the triple play wouldn't help me there. Instead of cable, I have internet only ($20) and Netflix ($18). This works out great for me. I could add up to $60 a month on custom content from Hulu and still be winning.
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FlyingCow
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True. (depending on what Blackberry charges you ring up, of course. [Razz] )

I like having a land line (though I don't like the fact that if my power/cable goes out, so does my phone... although we still have our cell phones, too).

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katharina
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I haven't had a land line for about eight years, and I don't miss it at all. My first land line in my name starting ringing with phone selling people (oh my stars...I can't remember what they are called) within 24 of getting the line, and it didn't stop. I am THRILLED to not have that be a problem in my life.
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Luna 9
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NO. I will not stand for this bullshark. Hulu is where I can watch Scare Tactics and Family Guy and The Brak Show without having to stay up on school nights or go back in time before the cancellation of The Brak Show in 2001. I DON'T HAVE ANY MONEY, HULU. I AM BUT A LOWLY PEASANT.
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rivka
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Poor Raymond. You seem to be the invisible one today/yesterday.
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Dogbreath
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
Reminds me of Czechs- they won't take anything for free. They're still cheap, but nothing's free- ketchup at McDonald's costs 25 cents a packet, for example.

Are they the 10 g ketchup packets we have here, or are they larger? I can't imagine paying that much for so little ketchup.
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FlyingCow
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I haven't had any problems with telemarketers... but the Do Not Call registry also debuted since the time you had your landline, and it's cut a lot of that out.

The only people I get on my landline are family and individuals that I give the number to so they don't bother me on my cell phone during the day. It's also great that I don't have to worry about peak/non-peak hours.

Not saying that anyone *needs* a landline, but I kind of like having one.

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katharina
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Telemarketers! Thank you!

I am happy for options, and if Hulu wants to up their offerings to the stuff I want when I want it and then charge for it, I am all for it.

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FlyingCow
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I wonder if cable companies will start competing by offering television shows "on demand" like they do movies.

They already have the mechanism in place, I'd imagine.

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Vadon
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quote:
Originally posted by FlyingCow:
I wonder if cable companies will start competing by offering television shows "on demand" like they do movies.

They already have the mechanism in place, I'd imagine.

I know Verizon has some television shows available free on demand. The interface is pretty awful, and the selection isn't much better. But they have some.
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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by FlyingCow:
I wonder if cable companies will start competing by offering television shows "on demand" like they do movies.

They already have the mechanism in place, I'd imagine.

A lot of them already do. Comcast, around here, offers a lot of shows on demand.
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Sterling
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I only watch a handful of shows on Hulu, and for most, it's a matter of convenience, not necessity. If Hulu is going to make it obnoxious to use their service, I'll probably fire up the DVD recorder. I don't subscribe to cable; watching the occasional commercial is a necessary evil, but about as much necessary evil as I'm willing to put up with.

For an expanded selection of on-demand things that I actually wanted to watch and not having to put up with commercials, I might be willing to shell out as much as $5 a month. If they just hope to start charging for what they're offering now for free, they really haven't been paying attention to this whole "Web" thing.

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FlyingCow
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quote:
they just hope to start charging for what they're offering now for free, they really haven't been paying attention to this whole "Web" thing.
That's not entirely true.

There has been some success going from a free to a profit model (Napster to iTunes, subscriptions to certain news sites, etc).

I'd be curious if they'd offer, say, first episodes for free, but charge a fee to watch the rest of the series (like ESPN's "Insider", give a taste and some generic content, but charge for more premium stuff).

Would also be curious if they did it as a subscription model (like Insider/NetFlix) or a micropayment model (like iTunes/Amazon ebooks)... and if a person could "own" the episode after they paid for it (iTunes/Amazon), or if they were simply paying to view it (NetFlix).

I'm pretty curious to see how it plays out.

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Ron Lambert
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I guess it's time for the aliens to eat, now that our brains have been properly slurried.
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