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 Hefty Netflix price increase
John W McKelvey
Posted: Jul 16 2011, 07:49 PM


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QUOTE (Marty McKee @ Jul 16 2011, 10:14 AM)
I just decided to switch from my current 3-discs-plus-streaming account to a 2-discs-plus-streaming account, and I will pay one dollar less than I have been paying. Sure, I get one fewer DVD at a time, but I got plenty around here to watch anyway. It's not much of a hardship.

I have naturally assumed the reason Netflix is doing this is to encourage people to drop all their DVDs and go all-streaming. Judging from their actions the last year or so, I'm sure Netflix now hates DVDs and wants to get rid of them. And when they do totally abolish DVDs, I bet the company will enjoy firing thousands of workers.

Agree completely. This push to go all streaming wouldn't be as bad if they could muster a fraction of the selection. Netflix DVD is awesome (hopefully not about to be "was"), but I'm not so interested in Hulu2.

And unfortunately, I'd already jumped down to 2-discs before this increase, so no savings there.


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"I'm nostalgic for conversations I had yesterday. I've begun reminiscing events before they even occur. I'm reminiscing this right now. I can't go to the bar because I've already looked back on it in my memory... and I didn't have a good time."
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Bob Lindstrom
Posted: Jul 17 2011, 09:56 AM


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QUOTE
Agree completely. This push to go all streaming wouldn't be as bad if they could muster a fraction of the selection. Netflix DVD is awesome (hopefully not about to be "was"), but I'm not so interested in Hulu2.


Me too. Prompted by the price increase, I looked at Hulu Plus and found myself underwhelmed. It's already stuff I can get with my cable and TiVo. Even though I may pay more for it there, I find it more convenient.

However, another (blue sky) alternative occurred to me. I'd pay up to $20 a month if Vudu would offer a monthly subscription rate. Excellent 1080p resolution and multichannel sound. It's what video streaming ought to be.

Further, with this price increase, Netflix also needs to stop cutting exclusive distribution deals, such as the backroom bargaining that exclusively gave the Sony PS3 surround sound access and a superior interface. When customers are specifically paying for streaming, Netflix owes them the best possible interface and streaming quality that their access device will allow. (But perhaps they'll roll out improvements between now and Sept.)

By the way, James, I LIKE "latte exchange rate" smile.gif

This post has been edited by Bob Lindstrom on Jul 17 2011, 09:59 AM
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Bill Picard
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 05:15 PM


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On the day Netflix's price increase went into effect, the company announced they would not be renewing their contract with Starz, which they'd held since 2008. Besides losing the streaming rights to Starz content like Party Down, Netflix has also lost the streaming rights to Disney and Sony movies, which Starz controls. HBO, which has the streaming rights to new Fox, Universal and WB movies, has always refused to sign with Netflix, so streaming subscribers are down to choosing between MGM, Paramount and Lionsgate releases, all courtesy of the Epix channel, and outfits like Relativity Media.

Upon Friday's news of the non-renewal of their contract, Netflix stock fell 9%, prompting the company to quickly respond with a statement claiming Starz' content was only 4% of their streaming titles (and 8% of streaming hours) and declining and that they'd use the $30 million they'd be saving per year towards other things like improving performance and licensing from elsewhere. (By contrast, they currently pay Epix $200 million a year.)

I suspect most mobians utilize the streaming feature for its rare titles, but my friends with Xbox who like new movies have been generally annoyed by what they perceive (rightly or wrongly) as the decreasing availability of recent titles. Sony movies like The Social Network were pulled two months ago, and one of my friends claims Netflix is turning into Redbox--one or two recent good movies and the rest a lot of filler no one wants to see. In the long run this perception, to which the loss of Starz contributes, may be much more important than the loss of Starz' properties themselves, especially with competitors like amazon building strength in streaming. I don't have streaming anymore, nor do I watch many new movies, but I do find this interesting because which movies get distributed and how has always been a major determinant in how movie culture is shaped moving forward.
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John W McKelvey
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 05:21 PM


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Maybe they'll take this opportunity to revitalize their DVD service and get some more backstock and rare titles?


...Yeah, probably not. But it's nice to hope.


--------------------
"I'm nostalgic for conversations I had yesterday. I've begun reminiscing events before they even occur. I'm reminiscing this right now. I can't go to the bar because I've already looked back on it in my memory... and I didn't have a good time."
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James Cheney
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 05:44 PM


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Starz dropped out because they figured partnership with Netflix would undermine profitability of their cable franchise, which costs more to access than either Netflix plan and doesn't afford the freedom to pick and choose what content of theirs you watch. Screw them and cable generally! Netflix may seem expensive but it looks good compared to cable with all its tiers and old junk dressed up as premium content stuck behind a paywall -what an extortion racket!
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Lenny Moore
Posted: Sep 3 2011, 08:13 PM


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Lenny Moore
Posted: Sep 15 2011, 12:14 PM


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James Cheney
Posted: Sep 15 2011, 03:55 PM


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Here's an interesting and possibly ominous bit:

QUOTE
In July, the company said it expected that it would end the third quarter with 22 million subscribers to the streaming service, 12 million of whom would also opt for the DVD-by-mail service. It expected back then that 3 million would opt only for the DVD service. Now, it's expecting that just 2.2 million will opt only for DVDs, a drop of 800,000.


They never give you enough numbers in these news stories. Did the 12 million streaming-plus-DVD estimate hold, for example. Oh, here's the answer sort of:

QUOTE
It still expects 12 million of those streaming subscribers to also pay for DVD-by-mail, helping it to generate more revenue overall.


What exactly leads them to continue expecting the 12 million while revising downward expectations for the 3 million? Based on cancellations to date or what?

Methodology aside, it appears dvd-s are continuing to fade, and that fewer people than expected are opting for dvd-only. I've been dithering on my decision and remain in the probably large group who still gets both streaming and discs for the simple reason we just haven't gotten around yet to opting out of one, the other, or both. I'm pretty sure that streaming's what I'll stick with along with cable stripped down to basic, and high speed internet. The home entertainment profile's looking rather spartan in this household. I notice I haven't bought a new dvd in over a year and that we watch way more PD stuff over the net than I'd have ever expected to. Book reading via the library is way up as well. How does this snapshot compare to what you all are doing entertainment-wise?

This post has been edited by James Cheney on Sep 15 2011, 03:57 PM
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Marc McCloud
Posted: Sep 15 2011, 04:56 PM


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QUOTE (James Cheney @ Sep 15 2011, 03:55 PM)
How does this snapshot compare to what you all are doing entertainment-wise?

I have seen people returning to my stores that I haven't seen in YEARS. This has been bittersweet for me though. While I appreciate the uptick in business, I'm a little upset that it took Netflix's price increase to make them come back... despite my time spent trying to differentiate ourselves from them. I live in a town that prides themselves in supporting small business, but in the end, it's all about the convenience and money.

Unless I'm mistaken, the physical dvd customers are the money makers for Netflix and the streaming is hitting them for a loss. I'm sure they are biting their nails watching the drama at the Postal Service. What will happen when Saturday deliveries are cut out, postage rates increased or at worst, no mail service at all?

Still, I see this as a small window of opportunity. We are going ahead with Video Store Day on October 15th. Hopefully people will eventually realize our worth in their communities.
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Lisa Larkin
Posted: Sep 15 2011, 08:04 PM


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One of Lenny's links led me to the following obnoxious bit of news:

Fox pulls free shows from Fox.com, Hulu

angry.gif I love how they blame the tv providers for their own extortionate actions:

QUOTE
Fox is using its pay wall to encourage viewers to push their local cable provider to reach agreements with the network to give them access to the site. Viewers who subscribe to Dish Network will see this message when they attempt to access full-length episodes: "Frustrated? Join your fellow subscribers and let your TV provider know that you want access to all full episodes on FOX.com. We will send an email when your provider's status changes."
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Marc McCloud
Posted: Sep 15 2011, 08:22 PM


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QUOTE (Lisa Larkin @ Sep 15 2011, 08:04 PM)
One of Lenny's links led me to the following obnoxious bit of news:

Fox pulls free shows from Fox.com, Hulu

angry.gif I love how they blame the tv providers for their own extortionate actions:


Didn't Fox create Hulu?
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James Cheney
Posted: Sep 16 2011, 12:01 AM


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I like the possibility of video stores making a comeback as the pay walls spring up and undo the inexpensive convenience. It does seem that the anything you want at a price you can afford allure of the web is fading just a bit lately. Owner-publishers of goodies have shared them pretty freely till now and having hooked us would like to reel us in. Cable TV-like packages with entertainment tiers, etc. may eventually result as the old analog model gets retooled for digital...or so I fantasize.
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John W McKelvey
Posted: Sep 16 2011, 07:01 AM


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Streaming... big price increase, dwindling of supply and reports suggest it's going to get a lot worse with loss of deals. I'm surprised the results aren't worse, although I guess most people aren't as concerned with a a large selection because they don't watch nearly as much as we mobians do. wink.gif

My movie watching habits (buying DVDs of my faves, renting most of the rest from Netflix - DVDs, not streaming - and the occasional download of something that isn't otherwise available) actually haven't changed at all. I do miss the free Netflix streaming, but it was never a staple.


--------------------
"I'm nostalgic for conversations I had yesterday. I've begun reminiscing events before they even occur. I'm reminiscing this right now. I can't go to the bar because I've already looked back on it in my memory... and I didn't have a good time."
Top
Marc McCloud
Posted: Sep 16 2011, 11:49 AM


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QUOTE (John W McKelvey @ Sep 16 2011, 07:01 AM)
Streaming... big price increase, dwindling of supply and reports suggest it's going to get a lot worse with loss of deals. I'm surprised the results aren't worse, although I guess most people aren't as concerned with a a large selection because they don't watch nearly as much as we mobians do. wink.gif

My movie watching habits (buying DVDs of my faves, renting most of the rest from Netflix - DVDs, not streaming - and the occasional download of something that isn't otherwise available) actually haven't changed at all. I do miss the free Netflix streaming, but it was never a staple.

For millions it is, and what I always see is eventually they burn through what they want to watch fairly quickly. The question is will there be stores around to meet that demand when they want to watch something specific.
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Wade Sowers
Posted: Sep 16 2011, 05:01 PM


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QUOTE (James Cheney @ Sep 15 2011, 03:55 PM)
I'm pretty sure that streaming's what I'll stick with along with cable stripped down to basic, and high speed internet. The home entertainment profile's looking rather spartan in this household. I notice I haven't bought a new dvd in over a year and that we watch way more PD stuff over the net than I'd have ever expected to. Book reading via the library is way up as well. How does this snapshot compare to what you all are doing entertainment-wise?

. . . well, in the words of the old song, we live in two different worlds - we do enjoy high speed internet service, but we get HBO, SHOWTIME, Expanded Basic, all of the HD channels, still buy lots of books at a local store (although we do get some stuff from Amazon now and then), have no library card, never watch any streaming movies, do not belong to Netflix, actually we never did rent DVDs, always bought, now we probably buy more DVDs then ever what with all of the MOD programs finally digging into the studio vaults and bringing out the more interesting, less well known stuff . . . typical compulsive/collector/owner personality, I suppose . . . perhaps one of these days we will evolve into the brave new world, but I suspect the only way they will take our Blus/DVDs/books away is to pry them out of our cold dead fingers . . .

This post has been edited by Wade Sowers on Sep 16 2011, 05:16 PM
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Marc McCloud
Posted: Sep 19 2011, 05:30 AM


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Ah man... I'm speechless. Actually, I'm not. I had to comment.


http://blog.netflix.com/2011/09/explanatio...ment#f29518d838
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William S. Wilson
Posted: Sep 19 2011, 07:16 AM


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QUOTE (Marc McCloud @ Sep 19 2011, 05:30 AM)
Ah man... I'm speechless.  Actually, I'm not.  I had to comment.


http://blog.netflix.com/2011/09/explanatio...ment#f29518d838

I for one welcome our new Qwikster overlords. Seriously, Qwikster? I loved drinking it as a kid, I guess.

This post has been edited by William S. Wilson on Sep 19 2011, 07:24 AM


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James Cheney
Posted: Sep 19 2011, 08:26 AM


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You allude to this

So he's sorry. So there's a new company with a funny name. What does this mean for us?
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Bill Picard
Posted: Sep 19 2011, 08:42 AM


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My guess is that this is his unofficial way of putting the mail-delivery part of their business on the market.
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Brian Camp
Posted: Sep 19 2011, 09:08 AM


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QUOTE (Marc McCloud @ Sep 19 2011, 05:30 AM)
Ah man... I'm speechless.  Actually, I'm not.  I had to comment.


http://blog.netflix.com/2011/09/explanatio...ment#f29518d838

Interesting quote from Mr. Hastings:

QUOTE
Many members love our DVD service, as I do, because nearly every movie ever made is published on DVD, plus lots of TV series.


Even he understands how untrue that statement is. If he had said, "nearly every movie being made will be published on DVD..." that might be somewhat less untrue.

This post has been edited by Brian Camp on Sep 19 2011, 09:09 AM


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