Jason Kilar, Hulu CEO: we screwed up royally

by Stefanos Kofopoulos • On 17-01-2009 • AT 7:44 pm • 3 ΣΧΟΛΙΑ

Jason Kilar, Hulu CEO: we screwed up royally

Είναι εξαιρετικά σπάνιες οι στιγμές που ο CEO επιτυχημένης εταιρείας όχι απλά παραδέχεται το λάθος αλλά δηλώνει ευθέως οτι τα κάνατε σαλάτα, για να χρησιμοποιήσω ότι πιο κοντινό και ευγενικό υπάρχει. Το Hulu ξεκίνησε ως συνεργασία του NBC Universal και της News Corp για να προσφέρει on demand premium video στην Αμερική. Αυτό σημαίνει υψηλής ποιότητας βίντεο, ταινίες, τηλεοπτικές σειρές δωρεάν για όσους ικανοποιούν τους περιορισμούς που θέτουν τα πνευματικά δικαιώματα εκτός Αμερικής. Το Hulu πηγαίνει πολύ καλά αλλά για κάποιο περίεργο λόγο πριν από μερικές μέρες αποφάσισαν να αφαιρέσουν από το site τα επισόδεια του sitcom It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia χωρίς να ειδοποιήσουν τους χρήστες.

Τα παράπονα άρχισαν να πέφτουν βροχή και ο Jason Kilar, CEO του Hulu δηλώνει “we screwed up royally” αλλά και “The team at Hulu is doing our best to make lemonade out of lemons on this one, but it’s not easy given how poorly we executed here”. Ολόκληρο το blog post ακολουθεί αλλά αυτό που έχει σημασία είναι ο τρόπος που ο Kilar διαχειρίστηκε το λάθος και το σθένος να παραδεχθεί ότι έκαναν κάτι εξαιρετικά απαραδέκτο. Θέλει δύναμη και τόλμη όταν διαχειρίζεσαι το βάρος $100 εκατομμυρίων επένδυσης και συνεργασίες με Comedy Central, PBS, USA Network, Bravo, Fuel TV, FX, SPEED Channel, Sci Fi, Style, Sundance, E!, G4, Versus, Noggin TV, Nick Jr., PBS KIDS Sprout, Disney Channel, Oxygen.

On January 9, we removed nearly 3 seasons of full episodes of ”It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” We did this at the request of the content owner. Despite Hulu’s opinion and position on such content removals (which we share liberally with all of our content partners), these things do happen and will continue to happen on the Hulu service with regards to some television series. As power users of Hulu have seen, we’ve added a large amount of content to the library each month, and every once in a while we are required to remove some content as well.

This note, however, is not about the fact that episodes of ”It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” were taken down. Rather, this note is to communicate to our users that we screwed up royally with regards to _how_ we handled this specific content removal and to apologize for our lack of strong execution. We gave effectively no notice to our users that these ”Sunny” episodes would be coming off the service. We handled this in precisely the opposite way that we should have. We believe that our users deserve the decency of a reasonable warning before content is taken down from the Hulu service. Please accept our apologies.

Given the very reasonable user feedback that we have received on this topic (we read every twitter, email and post), we have just re-posted all of the episodes that we had previously removed. I’d like to point out to our users that the content owner in this case – FX Networks – was very quick to say yes to our request to give users reasonable advance notice here, despite the fact that it was the Hulu team that dropped the ball. We have re-posted all of the episodes in the interest of giving people advance notice before the episodes will be taken down two weeks from today. The episodes will be taken down on January 25, 2009. Unfortunately we do not have the permission to keep the specific episodes up on Hulu beyond that. We hope that the additional two weeks of availability will help to address some of the frustration that was felt over the past few days.

The team at Hulu is doing our best to make lemonade out of lemons on this one, but it’s not easy given how poorly we executed here. Please know that we will do our best to learn from this mistake such that the Hulu user experience benefits in other ways down the road.


Jason Kilar, CEO, Hulu


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