Robert Cringely writes:
Hiro Media thinks we simply ought to add commercials to Internet TV shows and movies, thereby changing both the associated business model AND the balance of power. If shows come with ads attached in such a way that they can’t be easily removed or skipped, why would their creators be opposed to copying and sharing? In fact, copying and sharing should be ENCOURAGED, because they lower the overall cost of distribution, increasing market share.
Internet users in many countries can already watch TV episodes on the web, often with commercials. But that is different from what Hiro is doing. If you watch 30 Rock at nbc.com, for example, the episodes are cut into sections and commercials are added between the sections. If you want to start watching a new section of the show you first have to watch a pre-roll commercial. There are no true interstitial spots like you find on television. And these NBC shows generally play the same commercial over and over and the commercial doesn’t seem to be tied to any information about the viewer.