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Summary:

Hulu celebrates the one-year anniversary of its public launch today, and it’s getting social by adding Facebook and MySpace functionality. Many skeptics (*cough* Om *cough*) originally dismissed the joint venture between FOX and NBC as something that couldn’t work, but over the last year Hulu’s premium […]

Hulu celebrates the one-year anniversary of its public launch today, and it’s getting social by adding Facebook and MySpace functionality. Many skeptics (*cough* Om *cough*) originally dismissed the joint venture between FOX and NBC as something that couldn’t work, but over the last year Hulu’s premium content service has turned one-time critics into champions, and it’s now the No. 2 video site behind YouTube.

Past might not be prologue for the content provider, however. The online video world is vastly different now than it was when Hulu launched. Hulu may be a victim of its own success, as the premium content era it helped usher in is adopted by the competition. With media companies and cable cos getting into long-form video online, we at NewTeeVee ask the question: Do we need Hulu anymore?

  1. changes comes fast – and I expect Hulu is going to face some fierce competition. But I feel that they’ve done a great job building a strong presence, and they seem to “get it”. They’ve had some bluders in my opinon with the whole boxee snafu – but at the same time I feel I see hulu clips embedded on more and more websites, now they have nascent social features and they are reaching out to users in a variety of ways such as their hulu anywhere widget (http://tinyurl.com/hulu-mini-viewer). Seems they’ve opened a lead that others will have to work very hard to close.

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  2. Hulu has proven that a premium content experience can be both user and advertiser friendly. Kudos to them!

    But now the real work begins. Their content partners are locked in (but not for long). Their content partners are OK with deminimus payouts (and no min guarantees) from advertisers (but they won’t be when they’re competing with Comcast and DirectTV).

    Content partners simply can’t and won’t let their pay television business erode. Most of Hulu is substitutional not incremental.

    If they can lock in their users and bring on more content partners, they’ve got a good change of remaining relevant but I wouldn’t want to be Providence Equity Partners.

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