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Hulu, Redlasso, and “Buckets of Sand”

hulu_10-20.jpgWe attended the “Media and Money” conference last week, and were interested in finding out more from one of the panelists, George Kliavkoff, Chief Digital Officer of NBC Universal.

Kliavkoff was the interim CEO of Hulu.com, and now sits of the Board. “I’m incredibly pleased by the growth and reception by consumers and how quickly they’ve become a top 10 video site,” Kliavkoff tells TVNewser.

Hulu is unique in its partnership between News Corp. and NBC Universal — two companies actively competing in the news divisions. News clips from both MSNBC and Fox News can be found in the Hulu News channel, and the networks have taken turns streaming their debate feed onto the site during the general election. “There are places where our companies compete,” Kliavkoff says, but notes the site was a “combined vision” of Jeff Zucker and Peter Chernin, and there has been “complete agreement” thus far.

redlasso_10-20.jpgWe also asked Kliavkoff about Redlasso, a site (used frequently here) that has been shut down since July after NBC and FOX filed suit against the company. During the panel, Kliavkoff said, “There are people trying to set us on fire and then sell us buckets of sand.”

Although he wouldn’t comment directly on Redlasso, he said, “We love working with people who respect copyright, who value the investment we make in our content and don’t steal it. And those are the companies that we want to work with.”

We asked Redlasso for an update as well. The company’s president and founder, Kevin O’Kane, tells us: “Redlasso continues to provide a solid content management solution to our ‘Radio2Web’ and ‘TV2Web’ clients. At the same time, we are advancing our conversations with content providers, with the goal of establishing formal partnerships that will quickly help us restore access to the Beta site.”

In the meantime, Kliavkoff thinks NBCU’s video offerings are ahead of the pack. “I don’t think there’s been any company more aggressive about distributing video directly and through partnership and allowing customers to parse it and embed it,” he said. “I think we’ve been the leader in allowing people to do it. Not just with Hulu, but with our news content.”

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