Hulu has dominated the internet television and movie industry ever since it began, offering a legitimate home for shows that couldn’t be shut down by copyright laws. It was great. It meant late nights would be complete, with an episode of Arrested Development to go along with the Cheerios when you need a break from writing a paper.
Hulu’s expanded immensely since it started, too, with it’s alien-themed ads featuring Alec Baldwin and other actors from their most successful shows. It’s started showing movies, too, adding to the awesomeness that is free media.
Now YouTube, a Google company, is attempting to play off that by featuring shows and movies on its website.
It seems surprising that it wasn’t there that the whole trend started, though, as a part of Google and an influential company in its own right, and now it’s second to the plate. I have always been impressed with both the search engine’s and the video website’s abilities to foresee media trends and to capitalize on that, but YouTube might have missed the ball on this one. It’s shows are not quite up to par with Hulu’s. Neither are it’s movies. It’s going to take some serious work on their part to correctly advertise it.
And of course, YouTube is in theory a website about the average viewer posting their own material. Anything copyrighted has had to be removed, for the most part, and the major focus is on public work.
That being said, it remains to question to see if Google and its partner can compete with Hulu and actually get some traffic to that, but first it will need to sign on some key shows to sweeten the deal. Great things come in pairs, after all. Sunny and Cher. Paul and John. Transformers and Transformers 2.
We’ll see if this will play out well, and if YouTube can keep its status as the progressive media company, or if it will fall behind quicker mediums.