It's being reported that Hulu, the American web-based TV catch-up service, has abandoned its plans to launch a UK version following the collapse of talks with British broadcasters.

Hulu's negotiating team are quoted by the Telegraph as saying they've been unable to get "any traction in the British TV market”, adding that the “market does not match their business expectations". The main issue for ITV was that it was too busy pushing its own nascent catchup service.

The broadcaster said: "Hulu is a major success in the US but the UK TV market is a different place. It is much more consolidated, which mean there are fewer online locations than in the US, which users need to visit to get access to their favourite content - therefore there is less need for aggregators".

Channel 4 and Five also rejected Hulu's advances because the company wanted to control the advertising inventory around the networks' content - something that it does in the US, but not a proposal that either network was prepared to agree to in Britain.

Perhaps one day there'll be a service that's able to offer free content from the BBC and ad-supported video from ITV, Channel 4, Five and other broadcasters. We can but hope. Until then, we suspect most people will continue to plunder filesharing sites for the content they're after.