YouTube steps into the television pay-per-view ring.

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Sites like Hulu have been offering free streaming video of your favorite TV shows for a while now, so it’s no wonder that YouTube is getting into the act. But unlike Hulu, YouTube intends to charge for the service. According to Peter Kafka YouTube will be offering

something similar to what Apple and Amazon already offer: First-run shows, without commercials, for $1.99 an episode, available the day after they air on broadcast or cable.

The big difference with the YouTube model is that your favorite episodes will stream to your computer instead of downloading (Apple and Amazon let you download). Negotiating with the networks are still in the works. But what network wouldn’t love to charge for a streamed version of their shows instead of the Hulu model, where shows are readily available for free? One thing is certain, the Hulu free-for-all model is about to get a little fire under it’s digital ass.

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