— Hulu’s 2009 resolutions : Hulu’s plans for 2009 don’t include fundraising or downloads, CEO Jason Kilar told Mediapost. Instead, the NBCU-News Corp (NYSE: NWS) JV will focus on developing better video search and ad targeting technology, personalization features like recommendation apps, and global expansion. Why skip downloads? Kilar explains: “The notion of downloading heavy files to a device that takes up a lot of space is something that had value several years ago when we were not connected all the time. So, the bigger opportunity for users is to focus on the streaming part of the business.” He also said that Hulu did not need to raise additional capital.
— *CBS* Interactive to launch college basketball-themed series “Heckle-U”: CBS Interactive (NYSE: CBS) will roll out “Heckle-U,” its latest original web series, in February. Tied to the network’s NCAA March Madness coverage, the 10-episode series centers on a slacker who takes pleasure in heckling players during games. The show, sponsored by P&G through product placement, stars Tom Arnold and “Punk’d” actor Owen Benjamin, according to THR. “Heckle-U” is produced by Nu Media Studios, the digital production house and management company launched by former ICM digital head Michael Kernan.
More on sports leagues after the jump…
— Sports leagues struggling with pirated game streams: Professional sports leagues once focused on keeping pirated photos and game clips offline, but the problem has shifted to streams of whole games, the NYT reports. Complicated deals between the leagues and the cable and broadcast networks often keep specific games off the air, leaving fans in the dark — and they’re increasingly turning to pirated streams to catch them. “We never felt that the jewel in our crown, the live games, would be vulnerable,