The News Corp./NBC Universal video portal finally has a name and a URL. The venture’s new CEO Jason Kilar writes they picked the moniker Hulu because it is “short, easy to spell, easy to pronounce and it rhymes with itself.” (Hulu means “feather/plumage” or “choice and precious” in Hawaiian, so perhaps it’s also a sly reference to the NBC peacock.)
The site displays a bookmark page for now, but it is accepting applications for an invite to participate in a private beta beginning in October. The venture recently closed on $100 million in equity financing, so expectations are high in the Web 2.0 world.
Many content providers have a combative relationship with YouTube and feel that the video-sharing site encourages the improper reuse of their copyrighted video. Hulu is intended to provide an alternative to watching TV programming online, in a way that’s supported by advertising and endorsed by copyright holders.
The site will initially feature programming from Fox shows like “24” and “Family Guy” as well as NBC shows like “30 Rock” and “The Office.” But other media partners may decide to join Hulu after a public trial run has been conducted. If you are interested, you can sign up to beta test the new site at Hulu.com. You will get an email from Hulu when the public trial begins.