Feeds

Big TV flips ad blockers the bird

Hulu says goodbye

Intelligent flash storage arrays

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
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Google opens Inbox – email for people too stupid to use email
Print this article out and give it to someone techy if you get stuck
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.