This, I have to say, is a bit of a milestone. Sony’s SoapCity.com is offering digital versions of two popular daytime programs over the Internet. Viewers can download commercial-free installments of “The Young and the Restless” and “As the World Turns” for $1.99 an episode and play them on their computers.
It’s the first time anyone has made a current TV series from a major network available online — at least in a legitimate, non-pirated fashion. The only other example I can think of is a similar service by T-Online Vision, which is the broadband portal for T-Online’s broadband service in Germany, is streaming one of the most popular German soaps five hours ahead of its broadcast on TV, again for a price.