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Comment: Re:I didn't leave WHAAAA. . ..? (Score 1) 325

by raresilk (#37850008) Attached to: Netflix Loses 800,000 Subscribers After Qwikster Gaffe

DarkOx, it's hard to believe your comment is based on any familiarity at all with Netflix's streaming content. I have been a subscriber to Netflix since the beginning. When they first instituted streaming, I eagerly adopted it. It was promoted as "Watch Instantly" which will always be streaming's biggest draw - no waiting for a DVD if you just suddenly have to watch some random film you just read about. Or you need to watch part of it to do some research, etc. And indeed, Netflix USED TO offer a large variety of streaming content. Contrary to your assertion, though, Netflix streaming has never been focused on the top-hit of the year, "Hollywood-A-list" movies. It was always the backlists and Criterion stuff that streaming was great for.

But now, that's mostly gone, because Netflix let most of its streaming licensing agreements expire about a year ago. Google the news and see for yourself. It was widely criticized in the financial press and was cause for criticism that Netflix's stock and prospects were wildly overvalued. Almost nothing is available on Netflix streaming now. It has nothing to do with "my recommendations algorithm" not getting fed. If I put a film title into Netflix's search engine, and it comes up as "DVD only," my recommendations didn't do that. Netflix did. The Criterions - gone. All of the indy houses - gone. Anime - virtually all gone.

The real dick move, and idiot move, was for Netflix NOT to raise its prices sooner. Having choked off by 50% or more the variety of content that subscribers could stream, to in rapid succession (1) make a price rise that was double for many people, and (2) indicate they'd lose their DVDs in the near future if they didn't subscribe to a separate service, made people who already felt very screwed over by the dramatic drop in streaming content even more screwed. If Netflix's CEOs had thought the slightest bit ahead, they would have instituted a series of modest price rises for DVD levels in the years leading up to the rollover date for their licensing agreements with Sony, etc. Then, they could have afforded to keep operating a streaming service that reasonably corresponded in breadth with their DVD service. Moreover, during that time period, Hulu, etc. had not emerged as serious alternatives. But once they'd lost most of the content that made streaming valuable, it felt like a complete buttfuck to get slapped with more-money-for-less-service. No, I didn't quit them entirely, but I dropped down to the lowest level and picked up Hulu Plus. Which still doesn't have a lot of the older, art-house and foreign stuff I want, so I'm stuck waiting for DVDs on those.

SCCS, the source motel! Programs check in and never check out! -- Ken Thompson

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