Thursday, December 13, 2007

This Content is Currently Not Available


Plucked out of New York I find myself at some crossroads. Luckily I brought my trusty laptop along for the ride to Denmark.

Each day there is a limited amount of sunlight, which translates to some minor constraints of lifestyle. I have to wake up early enough catch the first rays of light and be home by 4 pm in order to not get lost trying to find my way back. But once I do arrive home there is this big question surrounding "What do I do for the next seven hours?". I could read books, cook elaborate dinners, blog or construct the world's largest gingerbread home. I've decided to catch up on American television series that I don't have time to watch during the work week.

Two days ago I received my beta invite to Hulu, that new social video website, hosted by NBC U, News Corp and now CBS. Its supposed to help revolutionize how we view television content online. Well, as pleased as I was to finally receive my invite (it was requested a month ago), I was unable to access any of the content. Why? Probably because I am in Europe right now.

I attempted to access Joost, which gave me similar not working responses. However, I was able to access their TKO (Technical Knock Out Network) and the Sports Illustrated Network via Joost. Access to National Geographic via Joost was non-existent.

How am I supposed to become a dedicated user of these services when they do not function half the time? I find myself in a rural village in Northern Zealand, Denmark with access to weird Danish television series and all I want to do is watch Heroes. Yes, I should be soaking up the culture and that I am, but there is still some downtime and until I understand all the subtitles it will be worthwhile for me to have access to American programming.

I don't care if its packaged with local danish advertisements, but there should be some way for me to access this content. I have resorted to bit torrents and recently finished watching Kid Nation. 40 Kids, 40 Days, No adults and the New Mexico desert. We should try this out with politicians. 40 politicians, 40 days, No adults and the New Mexico desert.

I tried accessing Kid Nation from Veoh, but just like CBS.com, Hulu.com and Joost I was unable to access this content overseas. Stupid considering that I can just download them from bit torrents. These damn studios are shooting themselves in the foot by not providing content easily. Instead of getting some advertising revenues through legitimate means, they are getting zero revenues from me and anyone else in Europe or beyond who just downloads them from a competing service.

We live in a global economy. The internet should be the first place where laws, revenue shares and content distribution are being set up for mass global consumerism. I realize this is "uncharted" territory, but in the interest of companies responsible for content generation (which I respect and am willing to pay for) I say get with the times and make JV's/partnership deals with the rest of the world, so the US is not so far behind in the digital sphere.

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