So any notion that Hulu might be finally moving in the right direction, even after they put themselves up for sale can just be tossed out the window. The video-streaming service hit another roadblock this week, as their Facebook integration launch ended in failure, at least for now. Logging into your Facebook account to connect your Hulu account to it would sometimes result in you seeing some other users' information, like profile photo and email address. I guess if you're into the whole live someone else's life kind of thing, it's not such a bad feature, but for everyone else, we'd prefer to see our own information.
The good news here is that Hulu says it was not the doing of a hack attempt, instead it was simply a coding error.
Richard Tom, VP of platform technology spoke on this in a blog post this week.
When we launched our Facebook Connect feature early this morning, we discovered that a small number of users weren't seeing their own Hulu account information upon login. We're still drilling down on the precise nature of the issue, but we know that it was a coding and configuration error on Hulu's side, and not the result of hacking, or other third party actions, or a vulnerability in Facebook Connect.
For more on what happens now for Hulu and to see if the problem has been resolved, click the break.
We've been able to confirm approximately 50 affected users whose profile data, including email addresses, could have been accessed. But no one gained access to Hulu systems or highly sensitive user information such as passwords or credit card numbers.
In response to the error, Hulu disabled the Facebook Connect option. For those who were able to successfully link their two accounts during the time where the coding error existed, Hulu upgraded the privacy settings on those accounts to the most restrictive settings.
Hulu did update their blog post on Thursday to say that since the shutdown early in the week, they have rapidly fixed the problem and Hulu/Facebook Connect is back up and running.
They must be living off of the adage "all's well that ends well". At this point, some of the on-the-fence users have probably lost trust in the service, at a time where more users on the service means more valuation when it comes time for the potential buyer to cut a check. We'll see what happens from here.