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03-12-2009, 03:36 PM
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Hulu.com marked the one-year anniversary of its beta launch Thursday by adding new social networking features meant to encourage viewers to spend more time watching TV on the popular video site.
Hulu Friends further differentiates the viewing experience on the News Corp./NBC Universal joint venture from cable TV. Similar features are already available through online competitors CBS-owned TV.com and Joost.
Hulu Friends allows users to create a profile page, similar to Facebook, and then connect friends to share videos, track what they're watching and leave notes for each other. Users can find and connect with friends from Facebook, MySpace Gmail, Yahoo! mail and Hotmail.
Hulu.com's CEO told the Wall Street Journal Thursday the new features are meant to encourage increased viewing, driving ad sales. To use the new features, users have to create a Hulu account, which will help track who's watching what and allow advertisers to better target ads