Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Hulu CEO Jason Kilar Is Still Standing: The Full Dive Into Media Interview (Video)

Hulu isn’t supposed to be a success. And Jason Kilar isn’t supposed to have a job.

But the Hulu CEO is still running his site, a full year after angering his owners/bosses with a “Jerry Maguire” manifesto. And Hulu itself generated more than $400 million in revenue last year — just a few years after all the smart money was sure that the “ClownCo” would never work.

So what was Kilar thinking when he published that memo, anyway? And more important, what’s next for him and his site? We got to ask him directly at D: Dive Into Media last week — his first onstage interview in a very long time.

You can watch the full interview here, but you’re also going to want to watch Hulu carefully in the next few months. That’s because its strategic owners — Comcast, Disney and News Corp., which also owns this site — still don’t seem to have figured out what they want to do with the joint venture. And financial backer Providence Equity has a chance to get its money out this spring, which could directly impact Kilar’s plans, too.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work