hulu-logo-755364Hulu.com is an incredible resource for tons of high quality TV programming, streaming for free. Info from the site: “Founded in March 2007, Hulu is co-owned by NBC Universal, News Corp. and Providence Equity Partners. Hulu brings together a large selection of videos from more than 130 content providers, including FOX, NBC Universal, MGM, Sony Pictures Television, Warner Bros. and more. Users can choose from more than 1000 current primetime TV hits such as The SimpsonsThe Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Office the morning after they air, classics like Buffy the Vampire SlayerThe A TeamAirwolf and Married…with Children, movies like Men in Black,Ghostbusters, and The Karate Kid, and clips from Saturday Night LiveFriends and other popular TV shows and movies.”

Currently, it has one major flaw: it’s content can only be viewed in the United States of America. Shit. When you visit the site from Canada, and try to view any of the videos, you get this lovely message:

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Well, I did find a “work around” to be able to view all the content from Canada. Basically, you have to “trick” the internet into thinking you’re visiting the site from within the US. This is where http://www.Hotspotshield.com comes in.

Here’s a general description, from their website: “Hotspot Shield creates a virtual private network (VPN) between your laptop or iPhone and our Internet gateway. This impenetrable tunnel prevents snoopers and hackers from viewing your email, instant messages, credit card information or anything else you send over the network. Hotspot Shield security application is free to download, employs the latest VPN technology, and is easy to install and use.”

It is free to download, but is ad supported, so any site you visit, while you have Hotspot running, will have any extra ad banner on the top of you page. You do have the option to close the banner, so it is not really that big of a hotspotoffdeal. The software works with Windows and OS X. I’m using it on a Mac, and I have a little shield icon on my menu bar. Anytime I want to check out something on Hulu.com, I simply right click the shield icon, select connect, and that’s it! There is a bit of a delay when viewing the content hotspoton1on Hulu, as it to, is ad supported. The ads probably target whatever area you are viewing from, and because Hulu can’t figure out where you are, you’ll get a message saying “We can’t find content from our supporters at this time”, or something like that. Then you have to wait about 30 seconds for the video to start.

Now that Hotspot is active I can view all the shows I may have missed during the week, or revisit some classics:

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Eventually, Hulu will be available in more countries, but this should get you in for now. Enjoy.

UPDATE (May 6th, 2009): Hulu is on to us! This method does not work anymore. After a comment from one of my readers, Kerri, saying they were having issues using this method, I tried it out for myself, and sure enough, we are blocked, once again. I tried to watch something today, and I got this message:

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Damn it! I don’t get what the big deal is. If more people could access this site, more people could see all the ads! More people seeing the ads makes the sponsors happy. Happy sponsors = more money!! WTF?!

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