Feeds

Big TV flips ad blockers the bird

Hulu says goodbye

Security for virtualized datacentres

At Hulu - the ad-driven streaming video site cooked up by media giants NBC and News Corp. - you can watch mainstream feature films and big-name TV shows without paying a penny. But you aren't welcome if you've installed an ad blocker.

Roughly a month ago, Hulu began serving this message to any user who dares equip their Firefox browser with an Adblock Plus plug-in:

Hulu AdBlock Attack

A hint from Hulu

And this missive may be triggered by other ad blockers as well. "Our detection method is 'ad blocking software' agnostic and should present the user with this message regardless of browser or software," a company spokesman told us. "While ad blocking software updates never end, we will continue to invest in methods to protect our Content, Distribution and Advertising Partners so we can continue to offer our users premium content with a solid experience."

Hulu insists it isn't actually preventing these users from viewing video. So the bit that says "if you see this message repeatedly, you may need to disable your software" is just FUD.

But we wouldn't be surprised if the company puts the block on ad blockers in the not-too-distant future. "Hulu is a legal service brought to users completely for free through the support of our advertising partners," that spokesman continued. "Our intention is to build a successful long-term business model in order to provide users with compelling premium online video."

The question is, How many other sites will join Hulu in its ad block crackdown? As more and more advertising moves to the web, more and more people are installing ad blockers. According to the latest numbers from Mozilla, makers of the Firefox browser, Adblock Plus has been downloaded by nearly 20 million people, and nearly four million are active daily users.

The other question is, How will the ad block crowd respond to such a crackdown? They may tell Hulu to shove it. But what happens when YouTube fires up a Hulu-like missive? Do those users uninstall their ad blockers - or do they leave? And if they leave, what happens over at Mozilla?

Remember, YouTube is owned by Google. And Google is Mozilla's sugardaddy. ®

Bootnote

A tip of the hat to Silicon Alley Insider.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.