But, and this is the big fat critical but, at the end of the day NetFlix works, works well, and delivers a hell of a lot of good programming for very, very little money. And does so in way that the DRM is simply not noticeable.
Not noticeable? So I can run it on the machine connected to my projector, that runs FreeBSD and happily plays content grabbed from iPlayer or DVDs? Oh, no, sorry, not supported. Well, at least I can play it back on my WebOS tablet. Oh, sorry, not supported. Well, I can at least copy a few films to watch on a mobile device while I'm travelling? Oh, sorry, not supported either.
Meanwhile, I'm paying Lovefilm (Amazon) a monthly fee to rent DVDs because I can take these with me (or rip them for a mobile device, as long as I delete them before I send them back) when I travel, and I can watch them on every device I own.
Now, technically, it would be possible for me to rip every single DVD I rent, but I don't do this because there's no point. The entire point of paying the monthly subscription is for someone else to be responsible for maintaining the large library of content and being able to watch some of it when I want. I'd end up spending a lot on hard disks if I ripped them all and 99% of what I watch I have no desire to re-watch anyway.
A system that let me download films in a DRM-free format and had a monthly cost proportional to the number that I downloaded (e.g. 50 hours for the cost of my current 3-DVD-at-a-time package) would solve the problem for me and would mean that there is no danger (from their perspective) of my downloading everything I might ever want to watch - a somewhat silly fear that is predicated on the idea that there will never be new releases that I want to see - and cancelling the subscription.