An Empty Vessel - Does Hulu Have Any Value ?

It seems that my observations regarding the value of Hulu have finally made some inroads with the mainstream media. This blog has pointed out time and again that Hulu has some subscribers and has some technology - but so did Beebo and MySpace in their day.

Hulu's service (and therefore audience and revenue base) is made up of a bunch of agreements to show other people's content. These agreements are currently reasonably solid since they're largely with Hulu's major shareholders, but if the company was to be unwound, or to be majority dominated by any of these shareholders such as Comcast or NewsCorp, then their  situation might become very difficult.

The reality is that it is the ability to negotiate and acquire rights that determines the value of any internet broadcaster (or, indeed, any broadcaster in the internet age).

More technology companies are realising that they are useless without rights (hence Google's move towards becoming a content owner and the launch of content based services from companies as diverse as Samsung and Rovi). It's hardly surprising that we're seeing more and more interest in the services Rights Tracker are providing, especially now that the company can manage digital video files as well as all the metadata and rights information about the programming.