February 18, 2009
Video aggregator phenom Boxee.tv (which counts me amongst its recent converts) was recently notified by Hulu that it must not include Hulu content on its platform.
At the source of the issue is NBC and Fox’s delicate but life-sustaining relationship with the major cable operators, who aren’t thrilled that the content for which they pay the networks hundreds of millions of dollars is, courtesy of Boxee, showing up on people’s TV screens for free, and in a much more usable and intuitive interface at that. And so, as Hulu CEO Jason Kilar posted earlier, NBC and Fox forced Hulu to take this action in order to avoid disrupting their own negotiations with the likes of Comcast and Time Warner.
For me, what is more interesting and newsworthy is the fact that the Hulu-Boxee brouhaha is currently the no. 1 topic on Twitter, and the comments are overwhelmingly angry at Hulu. This is pretty darn telling. Something tells me that, with the weight of adoption and support Boxee is seeing, they will ultimately prevail. But it will take time – and money. And I’ve spoken with one very high-ranking media exec today who agrees — on both counts.