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Hulu, LLC
Type Joint Venture
Founded November 29, 2007
Headquarters Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Key people Jason Kilar [1], CEO
Eric Feng [1], Lead Developer
Owner NBC Universal and Fox Entertainment Group
Slogan Watch your favorites. Anytime. For free.
Type of site video on demand
Launched March 12, 2008

Hulu is a website that offers commercial-supported streaming video of TV shows and movies from NBC, Fox and many other networks and studios. Hulu videos are currently offered only to users in the United States. Hulu provides video in Flash Video format, including many films and shows that are available in 480p and high-definition. Hulu also provides web syndication services for other websites including AOL, MSN, MySpace, Yahoo! and Comcast's

Hulu is a joint venture of NBC Universal and Fox (News Corp), with funding by Providence Equity Partners, which made a USD$100 million equity investment and holds a 10% stake.[2]


[edit] Name

Look up 葫芦 in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

The name Hulu comes from two Mandarin Chinese words, hulu (simplified Chinese: 葫芦; traditional Chinese: 葫蘆; pinyin: húlú; Wade-Giles: hu-lu) "calabash, bottle gourd" and hulu (simplified Chinese: 互录; traditional Chinese: 互錄; pinyin: hùlù; Wade-Giles: hu-lu) "interactive recording". The company blog explains.

In Mandarin, Hulu has two interesting meanings, each highly relevant to our mission. The primary meaning interested us because it is used in an ancient Chinese proverb that describes the Hulu as the holder of precious things. It literally translates to "gourd," and in ancient times, the Hulu was hollowed out and used to hold precious things. The secondary meaning is "interactive recording." We saw both definitions as appropriate bookends and highly relevant to the mission of Hulu. [3] [4]

This Chinese "holder of precious things" expression baohulu 宝葫芦 "treasure/magic bottle gourd"[5] occurs in Zhang Tianyi's children's novel Baohulu de mimi 宝葫芦的秘密, translated as The Secret of the Magic Gourd.

[edit] History

The Hulu venture was announced in March 2007, with AOL, MSN, Facebook and Yahoo! planned as "initial distribution partners".[6] Jason Kilar was named the CEO in June.[7][8] The name Hulu was chosen in late August 2007, when the website went live, with an announcement only and no content. It invited users to leave their email addresses for the upcoming beta test.[9] In October, Hulu began the private beta testing by invitation, and later allowed users to invite friends.[10] Hulu launched for public access in the United States on March 12, 2008.[11] Hulu began an advertising campaign during NBC's broadcast of Super Bowl XLIII with an initial ad starring Alec Baldwin titled Alec in Hululand, intended to humorously reveal the shocking "secret behind Hulu", portraying the site as being an "evil plot to destroy the world"[12]. Advertisements have since aired featuring Eliza Dushku and Seth MacFarlane.

[edit] Features

Hulu distributes video both on its own web site and syndicates its hosting to other sites,[13] and allows users to embed Hulu clips on their websites.[11] In addition to NBC and FOX programs and movies, Hulu carries shows from other networks such as Comedy Central, PBS, USA Network, Bravo, Fuel TV, FX, SPEED Channel, Sci Fi, Style, Sundance, E!, G4, Versus, and Oxygen.

[edit] Availability

Currently, Hulu's content is only available in the United States with licensing reasons cited.[11] An exception to this was Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, which was made available without regional restrictions for a limited time on Hulu, and was since added to the iTunes Store.[14] As of February 2009, Hulu has pulled its content from CBS Corp.'s, and from Boxee, a software firm that makes Internet video suitable for viewing on a large screen, like a television connected to a PC.[15]

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^
  2. ^ Shirley Brady (2007-08-29). "NBC and Fox Jump Through Hulu Hoop". Retrieved on 2007-08-29. 
  3. ^ Kilar, Jason (2008-05-14), What's in a Name?,, retrieved on 2009-03-29 
  4. ^ Tim Stack (2008-03-28). "Hulu: Five Burning Questions". Entertainment Weekly.,,20185419,00.html. Retrieved on 2008-03-27. 
  5. ^ John DeFrancis, ABC Chinese-English Comprehensive Dictionary, University of Hawaii Press, 2003, p. 27, secondarily meaning "a small bottle-gourd-shaped hammer".
  6. ^ "Why Hulu Is Winning the Online Video Race | Newsweek Daniel Lyons | Techtonic Shifts |". 
  7. ^ Hulu (2007-03-22). NBC Universal and News Corp. Accounce New Online Video Venture. Press release. Retrieved on 2008-03-28. 
  8. ^ Nat Worden (2007-03-22). "Google's Still on Top". Retrieved on 2007-08-29. 
  9. ^ Nat Worden (2007-08-29). "Google's New Foe: Hulu". Retrieved on 2007-08-29. 
  10. ^ Hulu (2007-10-29). Hulu Debuts Via Private Beta. Press release. Retrieved on 2008-03-28. 
  11. ^ a b c Hulu (2007-03-12). Opens to Public. Press release. Retrieved on 2008-03-28. 
  12. ^ McCarthy, Caroline (January 26th, 2009). "Hulu to shock the world with Super Bowl ad". CNET News. Retrieved on 2009-02-02. 
  13. ^ Rebecca Dana and Emily Steel (2008-03-11). "Can Hulu Find Its Mojo With Viewers?". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved on 2008-03-19. 
  14. ^ Sharma, Arjun (2008-07-29). "‘Dr. Horrible’ Free Again on Hulu, Shortly After Fourth Part Confirmed". Tubefilter. Retrieved on 2008-07-29. 
  15. ^ Holmes, Elizabeth (February 19th, 2009). "Hulu Withdraws its content from, Boxee". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved on 2009-02-19. 

[edit] External links

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