Nothing personal Hulu, but somebody needs to have their ass chewed out. And you’re the most visible. Please understand, I want you to get your act together…
So while watching Tekzilla today before work, the hosts mentioned their Freebie Download pick of the week, Hulu Desktop. This program is supposed to "give you the lean back viewing experience" that I am supposed to be wanting. If that is the case, then why is it short of hooking up my PC directly to my TV, is it so hard to watch Hulu on my personal "lean back viewing experience?"
This rant is coming from a simple desire to watch all of my streaming media on my gameroom TV. My PS3 has a built in web-browser so this would be a great use of it. I try to watch it and it doesn't work. I'm just thinking that I am an idiot. Not so much I found out. Turns out that Hulu has blocked the PS3 web browser specifically. As time goes on, I learn that Hulu has blocked other software that lets you use it outside of the way they think it should be used (ie hunched over your computer like a mongoloid Quasimodo.)
This would be a great thing for Hulu to get on board with. My wife, for example HATES Hulu with a passion for a multitude of reasons. One of those reasons is that she also hates sitting over her Macbook watching videos.
In the interest of full disclosure, she has been spoiled by Netflix, and so have I. At E3 2008, Microsoft announced that Netflix Instant Streaming was going to be a part of their Xbox 360 Console and that was the catalyst that got her onboard with us having a Netflix account again. Because of the simple act of watching streamed videos over the internet on our HDTV, she has gotten into shows such as The Dead Zone, King of the Hill, 30 Rock, and Lost. She now loves Lost so much that we are having a viewing party for the series finale. I hope Hurley lives. We have also bought the Roku HD Media Streaming set-top box so we can watch Netflix on that in the bedroom.
So one would think that the act of getting Hulu on a big screen would be as simple as pie. Again, not so much. For whatever stupid reason, Hulu has decided that if you don't sit your monkey ass down in front of a computer screen, then you can't use their service. First of all, I am well aware of the HTPC (Home Theatre PC) movement and I personally like it, but others don't want more crap under their TV. So using Hulu with something like TiVo or an Xbox 360 would be Ideal for those people. Secondly, the whole "sit your monkey ass down in front of a computer screen" movement for me is the worse possible idea they could do.
When watching TV or movies, I like my big ass TV, surround sound setup, and (don't hit me) my comfy ass couch. When I sit down in front of a computer, the last thing I want to do is watch anything. I am either working on something, in the middle of a game, or something else that I can't do while watching last night's Glee. I don't have that much free time and I have WAY too many options for things to do with that free time. Video games, hanging out with friends, YouTube, spending time with the wife, reading, and so on. So with all of those options, if I cannot get what I want when I want it, I will go do something else. I want to watch TV shows when I want to on my expensive TV. Because Hulu won't let me do that as it stands for reasons, unbeknownst to me, I guess I won't be using them.
That's too bad actually. Especially considering the rumors of Hulu becoming a pay service. Now they want me to give them money and still want to limit me with what I can do? Yeeaaahhhh. That won't be happening. I'm not adverse to paying money for access to content. I mentioned about our household love for Netflix and Major League Baseball's MLB.TV subscription is possibly the most badass thing I have seen in a while and I don't even like baseball.
I dunno, I just feel a little bad for TV networks and shows nowadays. It just seems like they watched the music industry damn near obliterated after the Weapon of Mass Destruction known as Napster hit em in the late 90s and yet they learned nothing from it. People will pay for the content if you let them consume it when and where they want. Convenience trumps piracy every single time, ask Apple how iTunes is working out for them. I just wish that the people that made some of my favorite TV shows knew this. But then again, I can watch The Guild, and Dr Horrible for free online. And on my PS3. Maybe we should just let these old farts die.