Changes to ABC Streaming and Hulu

Undoubtedly most Hulu users have seen at least one comment complaining about a show's license, if not several. Brace yourself for another round because starting January 6th, everything ABC and ABC Family went on an eight-day delay for free streams.

Paid Hulu Plus subscribers will still be able to watch shows from the Disney-owned nets the next day, as can authenticated customers of a few cable systems via the network's websites. Everyone else has to wait eight days, the same delay Fox puts on many of their shows.

As a practical matter for myself, I've been a Hulu user since the service was in beta and you needed an invitation to participate. Last year, I bought a paid subscription to Hulu Plus for the family, but because they don't have profiles and I wanted a clean way to keep up with my children's viewing, plus I wanted them to have a queue not cluttered with stuff they shouldn't watch, I put the Plus on a second account.

What I had been doing with Fox programming was waiting the eight days to watch through my own account, but sometime during the fall I started "cheating" by watching some Fox the next day with our Hulu Plus and right now, I'm sitting here next-day streaming Revenge.

I'll probably do the same with Castle, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., etc.

They can't really control the licensing allowed by the networks and though an eight-day delay makes no sense — if you miss an episode in a serial, you can't catch up before the next week — you can't really blame the network for wanting to drive more viewers to live, while they still can, but for the sake of households and families, Hulu could at least offer profiles.