Home  › Media › Video

Hulu-Disney: Watching for the Deal's Winners, Losers

  |  May 12, 2009   |  Comments

Disney's decision to acquire a stake in the online video site could have fallout on other businesses.

A lot of digital ink has been spilled in parsing the recent Disney-Hulu deal, most of it laudatory for the young company. And hat's off to Hulu CEO Jason Kilar and his team for pulling it off. In addition to Hulu's solid base -- due to having content from Fox and NBC -- the online video site gets further validation in the form of Disney ABC's "Lost," "Desperate Housewives," and "Grey's Anatomy." This will help Hulu's model and hopefully bring much needed advertising revenue.

Here are a few other things to think about when examining this major announcement.

What does it mean for Move Networks and Microsoft's Silverlight?

For the first time, ABC is allowing its content to be shown using somebody else's player. Prior to the Hulu deal, Disney's ABC had always insisted that its content be viewed through its player, citing its commitment to the user experience. The ABC.com player is powered by Move Networks whose CEO recently stepped down; the company has been struggling to find its way after establishing a leadership position as the home of quality video streaming. Move Networks had been working with ABC and Fox to stream shows, but the Hulu deal now brings into question its relationship with ABC and Fox because it seems redundant (and possibly pricey) to have two separate technology solutions to deliver the same content.

Then, there's Silverlight, which Microsoft is pushing as a competitor to the ubiquitous Adobe Flash player at the center of Hulu.com. Silverlight has made solid inroads in sports programming, partnering with NBC last year to broadcast the Olympics and with CBS this year to stream the NCAA's Final Four basketball competition. But with Flash -- which powers YouTube, the defacto online leader in terms of traffic -- now getting even more premium content validation by this deal, it becomes increasingly unlikely that the folks from Redmond, WA can unseat the category leader. (What's more, Flash is migrating to TVs and devices everywhere.)

What Does It Mean for the Advertising Model?

A side note to the deal is that The Pool, an initiative from the VivaKi Nerve Center to pioneer online advertising, now has one more content participant to help craft new online advertising models. CBS Interactive, Discovery, and Hulu as well as Microsoft, Platform A, Yahoo, and Broadband Enterprises were already participating. With Disney now having a stake in Hulu, it too will have the opportunity and incentive to create a sustainable advertising ecosystem.

What Does It Mean for the Future of Hulu?

Lastly, while certainly a positive for two-year-old company, adding Disney to the fold also brings to mind another player from a bygone era -- the once mighty @Home network. The product of several cable companies -- Cox, Comcast, and AT&T -- @home was positioned to be the premier provider of high-speed connectivity. Well, after being one of the darling high-fliers of the late '90s boom, @home fell hard and fast.

One can't help but see some of parallels between @Home and Hulu -- companies made up of natural competitors working to be the innovative solution that helps bridge the old and the new. Problem is, when the new gets big how will these natural competitors (ABC, NBC, Fox) really get along?

ClickZ Live San Francisco This Year's Premier Digital Marketing Event is #CZLSF
ClickZ Live San Francisco (Aug 11-14) brings together the industry's leading practitioners and marketing strategists to deliver 4 days of educational sessions and training workshops. From Data-Driven Marketing to Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email, this year's comprehensive agenda will help you maximize your marketing efforts and ROI. Register today!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Todd Krieger

Todd Krieger is a creative thinker, a connector, and a believer in the power of a good idea. He likes playing among the diverse, and sometimes converging, worlds of publishing, entertainment, technology, and advertising and figuring out how best to leverage each for the benefit of the other.

His bona fides include stints at Microsoft, Yahoo, and Denuo (a boutique consultancy within Publicis). In that time he's produced hundreds of hours of award-winning interactive TV content, including NCAA Final Four Interactive and CSI Interactive. He also relaunched the broadway.yahoo.com vertical in tandem with American Express and helped bring to market the Internet's number one gossip site, omg.yahoo.com. While at Denuo, he worked with "The New York Times," Fox.com, and Condé Nast on how to transition their core print and broadcast assets into the digital world.

Todd has spoken around the world on issues of copyright, technology, and interactivity and has been published in "The New York Times," "Wired," "Premiere," "SPIN," and elsewhere. His book, "The Portable Pundit : A Crash Course in Cocktail Party Conversation" can still be found on Amazon. He lives in Venice, California.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get ClickZ Media newsletters delivered right to your inbox. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

BigDoor: The Marketers Guide to Customer Loyalty

The Marketer's Guide to Customer Loyalty
Customer loyalty is imperative to success, but fostering and maintaining loyalty takes a lot of work. This guide is here to help marketers build, execute, and maintain a successful loyalty initiative.

Marin Software: The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising

The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising
Latest research reveals 68% higher revenue per conversion for marketers who integrate their search & social advertising. In addition to the research results, this whitepaper also outlines 5 strategies and 15 tactics you can use to better integrate your search and social campaigns.

WEBINARS

Jobs

    • Internet Marketing Campaign Manager
      Internet Marketing Campaign Manager (Straight North, LLC) - Fort MillWe are looking for a talented Internet Marketing Campaign Manager to join the...
    • Online Marketing Coordinator
      Online Marketing Coordinator (NewMarket Health) - BaltimoreWant to learn marketing from the best minds in the business? NewMarket Health, a subsidiary...
    • Call Center Manager
      Call Center Manager (Common Sense Publishing) - Delray BeachWanted: Dynamic Call Center Manager with a Proven Track Record of Improving Response...