Streaming Services

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The following are legal ways to access media online as an alternative to illegal downloading.

Video

  • Netflix is an online streaming service that allows users to access its library of movies and television shows as well as rent DVDs or Blu-Rays to be sent and returned by shipment. Netflix only allows paid users to access its library.
  • Hulu is a free online subscription service that also allows users to stream through a library of media, but is mostly for up-to-date recent television shows. Hulu also hosts a variety of movies from the entirety of the Criterion Collection, a collection of classic, contemporary, and cult films from around the world. While Hulu allows free accounts to access some of its library by using paid advertisements, it also offers its subscription of Hulu Plus for more selection and extra features.
  • Crackle is another free online streaming service that has a wide selection of television shows and movies. Like Hulu, it allows for more features with a paid subscription.
  • Crunchyroll is a free streaming service dedicated to Asian television shows and Anime. More features are available with a paid subscription.
  • YouTube is one of the largest video hosting websites in the world and has a large assortment of free personal and professionally created content. YouTube accounts are always free and usually connected to a Google account (Gmail, Google+, Google Drive, etc).

Music

  • Spotify is a free ad-based service that allows users to listen to a large library of music from old to newest releases. Spotify accounts can be created from a Facebook account or with an email.
  • Pandora is a free ad-based radio streaming service that allows users to input their favorite bands, songs, or genres and listen to music. Based on responses given by the listening user, Pandora will play music most similar to what the listener enjoys. Paid subscriptions offer more services.
  • Last.fm is a free radio streaming service and social network that provides personal recommendations based on what you enjoy listening to. Premium subscriptions offer more services to use.