Rumor Mill: 'Daily Show' headed back to Hulu?

Fans of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report may have a little good news coming their way: published reports say The Daily Show could be headed back to Hulu... maybe. The New York Times says Daily Show owner Comedy Central and Hulu were talking as recently as December, and were hopeful of coming to agreement.

The Comedy Central shows were pulled from Hulu in March by Viacom, which owns Comedy Central. The company believed allowing the shows to be viewed on the free, catch-up TV website diluted their value. Both shows drew a huge number of hits on Hulu before being pulled off the website, which is jointly owned by NBC Universal, News Corp. and Disney. Both remain available on Comedy Central's own website.

Hulu has since rolled out its subscription-based Hulu Plus service, which is a more likely landing place for either show than the free Hulu site.

This isn't the first time rumors have surfaced that Viacom was waffling on its Hulu boycott. In November, the shows were the center of rumors that they would be headed back to Hulu in some form, according to a Wall Street Journal story. The paper reported that Viacom CEO Phillippe Dauman said that the company was closely watching the "consumer acceptance" of Hulu Plus, and was weighing whether to put more of its content on Hulu, or onto other online video sites. Dauman has been an outspoken skeptic of online video, saying it has yet to exhibit a workable business model that adequately compensates content providers for their product.

For more:
- see this New York Times report

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