Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Hulu Keeps Adding Commercials - Where Is The End Point?

A 22 minute television show on broadcast has about 8 minutes of commercials.  An hour-long TV program will have 16 minutes of commercials.  And very very few people want to watch all those ads.  Right now, Hulu is running between 4 to 6 commercials for an full length program.

In the past, they used to be reliably 30 seconds or less - and just one of them.  Now, we're seeing more and more commercials, up to two back-to-back 30 second commercials or one full minute ad.  The total is about 1/3 of the comparable advertising to on-air, but the trend is not encouraging.

There is one possibility of a silver lining: perhaps there will be fewer commercials on cable in the future.  Today, cable subscribers pay (heftily) for TV that is loaded with ads.  They may lose their tolerance for all those commercials.   And the result could a better cable TV experience.  But let's not get our hopes up.

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