Media

Hulu secures exclusive $80M deal with South Park, throws content behind a paywall

Image Credit: South Park
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Web streaming giant Hulu has landed a major deal with the creators of South Park, securing exclusive rights to the TV show’s massive content backlog.

Since 2008, South Parks’ creators have made nearly every episode of their show available for free on SouthPark.com. When the ad-supported service first launched, it was seen as a game-changing move to curb piracy.

The new deal, announced yesterday and valued at $80 million according to the NY Times, will push much of South Park’s 240 episodes behind a paywall. Now only recently aired episodes of the series will be made available for free on Hulu and SouthPark.com. To access the show’s full catalog, fans must sign up for Hulu’s premium service — joining the company’s 6 million existing paid subscribers.

Hulu’s South Park deal is the latest in a cult comedy land grab among the Web’s biggest media firms; from Netflix’s move to commission new episodes of Arrested Development and a Wet Hot American Summer TV show, to Vimeo’s funding of viral mini-series High Maintenance, to the rebirth of Community on Yahoo — following NBC’s cancellation of the series earlier this year.

With all these exclusive deals, new media players like Hulu have made two things crystal clear: that original content is king, and that sometimes fans will have to pay for it.

More about the companies and people from this article:

With more than 25 million members in the United States, Canada and Latin America, Netflix, Inc. [Nasdaq: NFLX] is the world's leading Internet subscription service for enjoying movies and TV shows. For US$7.99 a month, Netflix members ... read more »

Yahoo! is the premier digital media company. Founded in 1994 by Stanford PhD candidates David Filo and Jerry Yang as a way for them to keep track of their personal interests on the Internet, Yahoo! has grown into a company that hel... read more »

ounded in March 2007, Hulu is operated independently by a dedicated management team with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Seattle and Beijing. NBC Universal, News Corporation, as of April 2009, Disney, Providence Equity Partn... read more »

Vimeo is a cleanly-designed video sharing website that allows people to publish their videos for public consumption or just for friends and family. Vimeo launched support for high definition video in October 2007, further establishing ... read more »

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38 comments
Matt Garlock
Matt Garlock

Hutch Moragne looks like your Hulu/Commercial subscription might be worth it

James Gluz
James Gluz

If you make me like the show, I can undo this!

Ryan M Bertoldi
Ryan M Bertoldi

Right?? I cancelled cable and have Hulu and Netflix for $12 a month..what more do you need? ..to use your tablet or phone as a remote too in case you loose it...got that ;)

Ryan M Bertoldi
Ryan M Bertoldi

And for those that arent aware, it is the 21st century, if youre in another country and want access to your Netflix or Hulu download Hola Internet Proxy and put yourself back in the USA:

Lauren Lever
Lauren Lever

Hulu plus is super cheap compared to cable, though. I get wanting stuff for free if you are a broke college student, but producing content does cost money, so don't be a cheapass!

Devin Christy
Devin Christy

2 easy steps. 1. bing.com 2. Full episodes of south park free streaming . Nuff said

madurai kk
madurai kk

I highly recommend you never leave the normal work, however i also feel this is wonderful!!

William Su
William Su

probably the worst investment they could have done. Might take a while to make that back

MrFester *
MrFester *

People still use #Hulu -Horrible service?

Jack S Wolfie
Jack S Wolfie

Or you can stream them all commercial free from other places.. just be sure to put you browser condom on.

VentureBeat
VentureBeat

False. In order to stream all episodes, not just the most recent ones, you need to pay for a Hulu Plus membership. Please read the article, Mark Gregory Valente

Jared Zimmermann
Jared Zimmermann

Southpark studios is gone now? O well ill have to use the other free sites

Mark Gregory Valente
Mark Gregory Valente

All the episodes, even though the streaming is powered by HULU, seem to all stream for free with 3 commercial points throughout playback of each episode. Doesn't seem to be too far off of the operation of the previous non-HULU powered site. So all-in-all there doesn't seem to be much difference, and this article is just stirring people up without relaying the facts

Jit Bhattacharjee
Jit Bhattacharjee

Sad news for fans in countries where fuckin' Hulu decides not to broadcast!!! oh wait, we are Indians and we will continue to pirate till its fixed... muhahahah (btw we too love streaming tv shows, if needed for a fair price)

Peter Philip LoPresti
Peter Philip LoPresti

Fuck Hulu. They are easily the shittiest out of Netflix, HBOGO, and Hulu Plus.

Al Jungle
Al Jungle

Streaming sucks, private trackers ftmfw.

Chung Yang
Chung Yang

I guess I will stop watching South Park. That is too bad. I had enjoyed the show.

Joe Martin
Joe Martin

So Southparkstudios.com will be off soon?

Nick Dodson
Nick Dodson

All true South Park fans decide to wait until DVD release, everyone else decides to torrent episodes in protest.