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Hulu Blocks Hotspot Shield Users

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Well, that was fast. Two days after reporting that folks outside of the United States were using Hotspot Shield to watch Hulu, the site now blocks Hotspot Shield users — even those within the U.S. I wasn’t the first one to mention it (not by a long shot), but if I am in fact to blame for alerting the company to the “problem,” I sincerely apologize. But you did know it was only a matter of time, right?


The good news is that Hotspot Shield isn’t the only VPN service out there, and if Hulu is simply blacklisting a series of IPs from that service, others should still work. And of course, those who still want to watch the programming on Hulu but can’t access it will probably just go somewhere else — torrent indexes and streaming sites like Megavideo, Supernovatube and, my personal favorite, Ninjavideo.

And of course none of those sites have pesky advertising. So Hulu, if you are reading, let me be the one to point out that you’re cutting off your nose to spite your face.

50 Responses to “Hulu Blocks Hotspot Shield Users”

  1. There seem to be a lot of uninformed people out here. Hulu aren’t Draconian. Do you really think they WANT to limit Hulu to only American users. They do it because they HAVE to or face legal action from their content providers and others.

    Think about it – who’s most likely to put a spanner in the works of the process of getting Hulu involved in the international market? Hulu or the numerous content providers?

    If Hulu comes to the UK bang goes a lot of the revenue that the content providers could get from TV licencing, Sky subscriptions, Virgin Media Subscriptions etc.

    Of course that’s in the short term and in the long term they have a lot to gain from something like Hulu (or, on the music front, Pandora which is another service that I’d otherwise not be able to get if it weren’t for Hotspot) but of course the likes of the RIAA and the MPAA (and associated international organisations) don’t see that.

    So stop moaning about Hulu and start complaining to someone (MPs – industry fat cats – artists who don’t get the massive cut that the fat cats do and are strong potential allies, especially in the music industry) about the stranglehold that the recording and movie industries have on their content which they use to stifle creativity and reasonable freedom of content.

    America has greater choice of what they can easily view on the Internet because Americans don’t take crap from anybody. In that respect we should learn from their example.

  2. Hulu is not blocking Hotspot, you gotta restart your internet and then it will work. Watching a bunch of hulu videos right now here in my apartment in the stockholm projects, love hotspot and Hulu have NOT blocked hotspot.


  3. I moved to Canada from the U.S. for University and never dreamed there would be an issue with watching Hulu in Canada. I have never had any issues with Hotspot Shield so I don’t know what this post is talking about. I have never received that message from Hulu.

  4. LOL, listen to all you people assuming he’s the reason this happened. Make him the scapegoat if you’d like, but you guys are flat-fuckin-wrong in saying he was the cause of the block.

    Let me explain from a network admin standpoint how easy this is for Hulu. Hulu only has to monitor incoming IP accesses. When they see a large number of accesses coming in from individual IPs, they will flag those addresses. A normal home user in the US will give only a handful of accesses to any given website they view, including Hulu. A highly used proxy server, on the other hand, may give THOUSANDS of accesses per second. This is incredibly easy to filter out. Then they take those addresses, resolve them back to their owner, find they are a proxy, and block them.

    The ONLY way you are going to permanently gain access to Hulu from outside the US is to find someone willing to setup a private proxy for you. I personally do this myself for non-filtered web access while I’m at work. There are many technical webpages that get blocked because of our aggressive blocking schemes, and so I just installed CopSSH (freely available) on my home computer and configure it to allow “AllowTcpForwarding” and “GatewayPorts”. I SSH into it using another free program named PuTTY, and tunnel using a dynamic tunnel. Then I setup my web browser to use a SOCKS v5 proxy with no username or password. BOOM! Online to everything as if I’m at home.

    You’re welcome.

    Stop crucifying this guy, he has very little to do with what actually happened from a very rapidly growing company that apparently is working damn hard to secure copyrighted material for their sponsors.

  5. “…it was only a matter of time.” We’re all going to die, too – it’s only a matter of time – but some of us like to put unpleasant stuff off as long as possible and not have other people hastening the inevitable.

  6. wallace

    hulu with hotspot shield continues to work on my old laptop, but, on my new laptop (just got it last week) it doesnt work. i wonder if someone can give some ideas.

  7. If you want to watch Hulu videos NOW. You can sign up for the HideMyNet VPN service. At only 5$/month, it’s a small price to pay to get access to all your favorite TV shows. Activation is instant, so you can get up and running within 5 minutes of completing payment. We have plenty of connections and bandwidth to go around. We’ll soon be opening multiple USA locations for your viewing pleasure.

  8. profamericain

    You write, “… others (vpn’s) should work.” Could you please give some examples. I haven’t been able to find any other free vpn’s.

  9. it doesn’t matter that you weren’t the first. clearly this post did it. fuck this blog, seriously.


    • the rest of the world
  10. patricksoon

    I live in Canada and was able to access Hulu videos. Hotspot Shield has now switched most of their servers to White Plains, NY (instead of Englewood, Colorado). After deleting all cookies in the relevant browser, restart HSS to watch Hulu again. Proxy detection works mostly through downloaded cookies. Without them, non-US users can still view Hulu content. Read more about this workaround method here.

  11. I think you meant “cut off your nose to satisfy contractual requirements from studios, networks and other outside content providers, thereby avoiding major lawsuits for streaming/distributing content in territories where Hulu does not legally have the right to do so.”

    That’s what you meant, right? ;)

  12. medusamorlock

    Hulu is unbelievably draconian — when will they get a clue? Just because they can’t figure out a business model that manages to satisfy their outdated notions, they persist in alienating the world. Somebody find a workaround!