So, the Internetz are all abuzz today about NBC/Universal’s new Hulu video site going beta yesterday. Most people lucky (or connected) enough to get invites are saying it’s not nearly as bad as they’d expect a service from a major media corporation to be. Some are actually saying Hulu will seriously threaten sales at Apple’s iTunes Store. Meanwhile, the smart people realize that this is no iTunes killer, nor is it a YouTube killer.
Matt Worden penned an article at TheStreet.com yesterday that suggests Hulu’s real victim will be Cable TV, itself. Worden says that Hulu provides a way around having to bother with the hassle of having cable TV at all. Which is something not many people are addressing. However, it’s obvious that this is precisely what will happen. Why pay for cable when you have DSL and can watch just what you want without paying a dime more?
Also, if you look at the big picture you can see that even if every network started offering up their shows online, the real trend here isn’t simply just a network’s migration from the old delivery system to a new one. It’s a move that is a desperate cry for help in a world where TV networks are needed less and less each day. In today’s world, if you’re looking for something interesting or entertaining to watch, you don’t need to bother with anything a giant corporation has created. You can just sit down in front of your computer, iPod or other media-player-of-choice and watch any number of worthwhile, quality videos. You can also watch worthless, low-quality videos if you’re entertained by them. There is room for all niches and all interests on the Internet and that scares the crap out of old media companies.
NBC wants to cling to their livelihood and they’re doing it by offering up their shows online. Their plan makes sense, but with video technology so inexpensive anyone can literally have a show and an audience with very little cash spent.
With that in mind, how can you not wonder why NBC doesn’t just sell it’s holdings and close up shop? They’d be leading the trend!