For the first time for a live event, Hulu is enabling its Watch Party feature for ABC News’ Election Night coverage.
If you’re wishing you could watch the Election Night coverage with your friends and family, Hulu is here to make it happen. Thanks to their partnership with ABC News Live, Hulu will be bringing its Watch Party social viewing feature to subscribers tonight, according to Tech Crunch.
The streaming company announced their plans to roll out their Watch Party feature in time for the election earlier today, which will allow subscribers to watch ABC’s “Election 2020” coverage through the Hulu app with their friends and family. Tech Crunch reported there will also be a way for users to chat and react to what they’re watching in a chat interface. This feature should support up to eight people per session.
According to Tech Crunch, this is the first time Hulu has enabled Watch Party for a live event, though the feature was first debuted in May. It was originally meant to give those “No Ads” Hulu subscribers a chance to chat with friends and family while watching the same thing together. When the feature was launched, thousands of Hulu’s on-demand movies and shows available for use with the feature.
Hulu’s Watch Party feature is just one example of co-viewing platforms becoming available to the streaming public. Netflix, arguably one of Hulu’s biggest competitors, also offers a co-viewing feature in the form of Teleparty, formerly Netflix Party.
According to Mashable, it was originally a Google Chrome-exclusive extension, however the Netflix Party website tells us Teleparty now available with Microsoft Edge. It also offers many new ways to watch TV in a socially distant way, including co-viewing for Disney, Hulu, and HBO. They also note that over 10 million people are using Teleparty to “link up with friends and host long distance movie nights and watch parties.”
Co-viewing, or “co-watching” as it’s referred to by the MIT Technology Review, has become evermore popular thanks to the isolation we’ve all experienced thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. The MIT Technology Review says it allows a group of people to “watch saved, liked, or suggested photos and videos together.” They also make the point that “shared screens are allowing friends and family to watch a film together apart, sharing the experience while practicing social distancing.”
One of the common and highest costs we pay for protecting our health through social distancing and social isolation is depression and loneliness. In a report from the Cambridge University Press Public Health Emergency Collection, the toll of our new COVID-19 normal of isolation can have serious effects on our mental health, saying, “Loneliness and social isolation frequently co-occur and are all too common in older adults… Studies suggest that while loneliness and social isolation are not equal to each other, both can exert a detrimental effect on health…”
While things like Teleparty and Hulu’s Watch Party don’t put us physically in the same room with each other, they do allow us to share an experience with other people. During a time of so much uncertainty with the coronavirus pandemic and so much unrest from the election, it may feel just a little better to watch the results come in with those we love. Along with the mental health benefits of a shared experience, we can enjoy the support from our friends and family simply by watching some TV together.
Kasey is a mom to a bossy 1-year-old and a lover of animals. Born and raised in Utah, Kasey now lives in Las Vegas with her family. In her downtime, she enjoys knitting, reality TV, and milkshakes. She and her son love long walks in the park, dancing, and laughing.
Hulu, United States Presidential election, 2020, Joe Biden, Donald Trump, Hulu.com
World news – US – Hulu ‘Watch Party’ Could Let You Watch The Election With Your Friends And Family