Hulu Got Less Funny – and Possibly Less Profitable’s three-year-old platform for watching online media has turned into one of the most successful attempts to bring TV to the web – even if its advertising platform has often struggled to keep up with demand as viewers surged from 580 million to 1.01 billion in the short span of time between September and December of 2009.

Looks like that advertising problem might have been the dealbreaker for Viacom. The company announced that it would pull its extremely popular comedy shows “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and “The Colbert Report” from, and carried through on its intentions on March 9th, after warning Hulu viewers that their shows would no longer be available on the website.

There’s no word on whether Hulu will take a hit in advertising revenue from this split; the two shows were some of the most-watched on the website, and users have already been expressing dismay at their removal.

Both Hulu and Viacom sources are claiming that the split was completely amicable, and that they are in talks for some future deals. That may be so; after all, Hulu is directing viewers to Viacom’s websites, where full episodes of both shows are still streaming live.

However, until the advertising problem can be worked out, it’s likely that Hulu will be a little less funny for the foreseeable future.

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