Netflix/Qwikster: I guess this is good-bye

Qwikster

Dear Netflix,

We’ve had some good times together. I remember when your red envelopes first freed me from the authoritarian grasp of Blockbuster, where friendly employees were as abundant as NC-17 movies. One of the first films I ordered through your service was Battleship Potemkin, the 1925 silent classic that would have been impossible to find in a Blockbuster store that carried 125 copies of Van Helsing. That’s why we cinephiles gravitated toward Netflix — you offered films we couldn’t rent anywhere else, and you provided an experience that was simple and cool.

And then you had to go and ruin a beautiful thing.

First, you split your DVD and streaming services into separate plans, implementing a 60 percent price increase for subscribers who wanted both products. Users felt blindsided and burned by that decision, forcing many to choose between your large DVD library and the instant gratification of streaming a smaller selection of titles. I put my account on hold before the price increase, with the intention of returning to Netflix later this year to catch up on some 2011 movies I missed, such as the acclaimed Meek’s Cutoff.

But I won’t be coming back anytime soon. Not to Netflix, and not to Qwikster, the renamed DVD-mailing service you announced late Sunday night. My reasoning: By separating and renaming your DVD product, you’re no longer simple and cool.

Regarding simplicity, the creation of Qwikster makes your users do twice the amount of work: two accounts, two queues, two sets of ratings. Netflix was such an attractive product because it provided a single stop for all your movie-watching needs. Chances were always high that, between DVDs and streaming, Netflix had the film I was looking for. And I only had to go searching for that movie once. I could look up Rio Bravo, see that it was available on Blu-ray and via streaming, and decide which way I’d prefer to watch it.

Now, Netflix and Qwikster will exist as two separate sites that, according to your CEO Reed Hastings, will not integrate with one another. That means that if Rio Bravo wasn’t available for streaming on Netflix, I’d have to leave the Netflix page, sign in to Qwikster, and then search for Rio Bravo a second time to see if it’s available on DVD or Blu-ray. That may only sound like 10 extra seconds of work, but we’re an impatient bunch. In his apology note, Hastings claims that one advantage of separate websites “is simplicity for our members.” But I fail to see how having to maintain two distinct accounts makes life any easier for your users.

As for coolness, Netflix used to be the epitome of cool. We Netflix subscribers used to worship at your altar. As far as we were concerned, you could do no wrong. You pushed Blockbuster to bankruptcy because you offered a vastly superior product. Your brand name carried prestige and became a verb when we decided to skip a movie in theaters: “I’ll just Netflix it.” And when you added free streaming, you showed us the future of home entertainment without neglecting your DVD service — the product that catapulted you to stardom.

However, by creating Qwikster, you’re essentially mocking your DVD subscribers. First, there’s the pitiful name, which simultaneously brings to mind Nesquik and a pair of deteriorating online services: Napster and Friendster. “We chose the name Qwikster because it refers to quick delivery,” wrote Hastings, oblivious to the irony of calling the slower of his two products quick. The name is awkward to type, violating the “u after q” rule that elementary-school teachers hammered into our heads. And unlike Netflix, the name Qwikster doesn’t conjure the image of movies. Mailflix, as plain as that sounds, would have been better, especially since that Twitter handle doesn’t belong to a NSFW profanity-spewing stoner whose avatar was, as of yesterday, a photo of Elmo smoking a joint.

Yet as cringe-worthy as the name Qwikster may be, it’s the meaning behind the name change that’s the most disheartening. By retaining the Netflix name for your streaming service, you’re making a statement about where you’re placing your chips. Clearly, you believe that streaming represents the future of home entertainment, and in that regard, you’re correct. But did that belief necessitate a name change for your “lesser” product — a name change that’s going to make Qwikster users feel about as cool as HP TouchPad owners?

There’s nothing wrong with preferring Blu-rays and DVDs over streaming. Nerds like me may favor the assured 1080p quality of Blu-ray over the network-dependent quality of streaming. And even if it takes a day (or, heaven forbid, two!) for a disc to be delivered, that’s a reasonable sacrifice in exchange for the sheer size of your DVD library. But with Qwikster, you are intentionally digging a grave for your DVD plan. When it comes time to sell or dispose of your DVD service, it’ll be that much easier to do if it has a separate name like Qwikster. You are basically calling your DVD subscribers Luddites: “What, you’re still getting your movies by mail?” and “Oh my, you’re still using that silly-sounding website that doesn’t even integrate with Netflix?”

Yes, Netflix, I still want to get my movies by mail, and no, I don’t want to be treated like an antiquated fool for doing so. Simply put, I don’t want to sign up for a service whose very purpose is to die. So I’ll be looking elsewhere. I hear GreenCine is a pleasant home for film lovers. Or maybe — just maybe — I’ll return to the company that drove me to Netflix in the first place. For one thing, Blockbuster Total Access has Meek’s Cutoff on Blu-ray, while Netflix Qwikster currently does not.

Sincerely,
John Young

Comments (427 total) Add your comment
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  • macy

    Couldn’t have said it better myself.

    • Jay

      I understand the frustration. i feel it, too, BUT….. why is there a blatent lie in the article? I didn’t have a 60% price increase.
      I have the 3 blu-ray plan. My price went from $23 a month to $27. A $4 price increase, or less than 20%.

      i dont see the big deal?

      • Viv

        If you have the one DVD and instant stream service you went from I believe 9.99 to 16.99 a month. I’m sure a more expensive plan from the get go wasn’t such a big increase but for people like me (college, student debt, soul crushingly bleak job prospects) an extra 6 or 7 dollars a month is a HUGE difference.

      • Jay

        OK, but the article is still inaccurate. It implies a 60% price hike across the board if you want “both services” and that is simply not true.

      • Joey G

        Depending on what plan you had before the price increase in terms of percentage was different. I had 1 blu-ray with streaming for $12. To get that service now it is $10 for blu-ray + $8 for streaming, a 50% increase. There’s probably one plan out there that hit a 60% increase and that’s the number the media has been using.

      • Jay

        I just got done browing the web for comperable services. There really isn’t much out there. There are other streaming services, but they cost more or dont have as much. There are other rental services, too, but Redbox is really the only thing that even comes close and THAT isn’t as good once you factor in late chrages, hassle of returing the things, and your selection being limited to whateever happens to be in the vending machine.

        You can jump ship if you want to, I’ll wave at you from the deck smiling. Now theres more Blu-rays for me :)

      • Ceppro

        John Young thinks he’s Don Draper writing that anti-cigarette campaign in the paper.
        Like someone else said, Netflix will realize this mistake and come back around. John Young will be the first one signing back on. That’s like these tools that state on here that they’re giving up their subscription to EW because of too many Twilight covers, yet they still subscribe.

      • Monty

        You guys forget the days of $5 dvd rentals. I used to work at a video store. Netflix/qwikster is stil by far the cheaper alternative (except for redbox) to the brick an mortor stores. Netflix is going to be able to license the big time movies now for streaming (because of increased fees), which was ALWAYS the wave of the future.

      • Thad

        Jay,

        The exact phrasing in the article is “First, you split your DVD and streaming services into separate plans, implementing a 60 percent price increase for subscribers who wanted both products.” There is no reference to Blu-Ray in that sentence whatsoever. There is no lie, “blatent” or otherwise.

      • Jean

        I agree – I dropped the streaming feature because I don’t have internet at my house, and my Netflix subscription actually dropped a few dollars.

      • @Jay

        It isn’t a lie – the 60% price hike was true for me.

      • Tom

        Let’s rename the split to something else. Maybe they won’t notice we doing this.

      • sydney

        I also did not receive a 60% price increase for my 3-disc blu-ray and streaming package. So while it may be true for some, it is just another example of the MSM running with the most extreme as the standard across the board. I don’t care, I will keep both especially now that “qwikster” is going to add video game rentals. I emailed Netflix every so often since I joined in 2000 to add video games. Sure I could go to gamefly but that wasn’t the point. This is a PR nightmare for them but they will recover and be stronger as a result.

      • KT

        I had both streaming and 1 DVD at a time, and if I wanted to continue, my cost went from $7 to $16…which is 60% increase; not cool!

      • Um, What?

        It’s 2011. How do you not have internet at your house?

      • Tom

        I use Amazon Prime. I left Netflix as soon as they lost Starz, and still proceeded with a price increase. Supply = Demand. The stock plunged. This isn’t about 4 dollars, you better believe it. Whoever is running Netflix really screwed the pooch this time.

      • Rick G

        Sounds like a Netflix intern “blatently” posing as an actual human being per corporate edict, especially given the follow-up comments.

      • Phil

        Jay, I used to have netflix streaming for 7.99 with 1 at time unlimited DVD rentals. Then it went to 7.99 for just streaming and 9.99 to add on the 1 dvd at a time…Now it’s 15.99….So really…My price doubled for the same product that I had a year ago…So really My price went up about oh say 100%.

    • Meg – Chicago

      Netflix “qwikster” has turned greedy. I stopped using them and started using TVDevo for streaming TV and Movies. Also use Redbox for $1 per movie.

      • Jay

        Using netflix, I pay less than $1 per movie. Redbox would be a rip-off for me, PLUS there is the added cost of gas, and my wasted time renting/returning them.
        Sorry to say, but $1 a movie is too much. Netflix is cheaper

      • Mike

        I guess it depends in what phase of life you’re in. I can’t see watching 28 movies a month to get to your “less than $1 a movie”…comment (I’m going off your 27 dollar 3 disc plan you mentioned above). But, I could see me renting a movie a couple weekends a month adding up to 2 bucks or 3 bucks (if I did blu-rays). I still have netflix disc (reduced to 1 from 2 to keep my prices around the same with streaming)….but I cannot see your justification making any kind of logical sense. You’re probably factoring in the streaming somehow too but you’d still have to watch like 30 movies a month to justify your comment. And come on…price of gas to return a redbox? Please, they’re practically everywhere now! Even if you lived in the middle of nowhere, you could probably find one not far from your place of residence.

      • Jay

        @Mike: Its not just me watching these movies….. its me, my wife & my son. We go through at least 6 movies a week. The streaming (we use mostly for TV shows) is in addition to all those discs

      • Mike

        Ahhh..see? Still just me and the mrs. so I couldn’t comprehend! Hence, the “phase of life” comment! lol That makes a lot of sense. I’ll still argue the gas comment though! lol

      • @Jay

        How poor are you???? Get a real job son or don’t have kids if you think 1$ per movie is too much.

      • Jay

        I never said $21 per movie was “too much”. I said that Netflix is CHEAPER than $1 per rental.

        I’m guessing you never passed reading comprehension in school…

      • Jay

        Ignore my typo above…. ($21 = $1)

      • Thad

        …oh, I get it.

        Stop feeding the troll, guys.

      • AMERICA

        @Jay
        You say “I never said $21 per movie was “too much”.” In your first reply to this, though, you said those exact words… “Sorry to say, but $1 a movie is too much.”

      • Jay

        You guys ALL missed my point. Maybe I didn’t say it in the clearest manner.

        My point was that Netflix is CHEAPER then Redbox per rental (at least for me) as it averages less than $1 per rental. And thats not even accounting for the streaming views

      • Tom

        Without the Starz, I’m not going to subscribe to Netflix. Face it.

      • AMERICA

        @Jay
        I understand where you’re coming from, I just felt that I should call you out on saying you guess we never passed reading comprehension when we’re reading exactly what you said and you’re the one who can’t keep track of what you say.

      • googliezoo

        Redbox may be everywhere for you, but I live in a rural area. The closest one to me is a twenty minute drive. With the price of gas I try to limit my trips to the store to once a week. Netflix is definitely the better deal.

      • Mike

        Touche’ googliezoo. My wife is from a rural area and when we visit, we still see redboxes like 10-15 minutes from her house. And in both cases, urban/rural, they usually tend to be in places of convenience that you’re probably going to anyway. That’s usually the case with us, so we’d be spending the gas anyway. But the comparison of Netflix to Redbox isn’t a fair comparison anyway. Redbox has limited selections where Netflix has broad selections. They both have the “New Release + 30 day” rule they have to follow with Warner Bros. movies. But, I’ve found that I have used both in the past. Netflix requires more planning, Redbox can be a little more spontaneous, so sometimes we’ll see a movie we want to see and break open the piggy bank to get that $1 we need to rent a movie!

        Anyway, Netflix still has a hold on me for now because there are TV shows I want to catch up on and it’s still the best deal for that. But, I think the competition is going to start taking advantage of all this negative press towards them. We’ll see where the chips fall!

    • nodnarb

      Other than the name change, this is all blatant speculation. The 2 sites and your queues could quite easily be integrated. They are most likely going to be accessing the same customer databases on the back-end.

      • Matthew B

        It seems obvious that they COULD be quite easily integrated – however the letter from Reed Hastings (CEO of Netflix) said they wouldn’t be – you should read that letter if you haven’t… this is not mere speculation, it comes straight from the CEO of the company. This means if you write a review or rate a film on Qwikster it won’t appear on Netflix – and vice versa. Similarly, like this article indicates, if you are looking for a specific film you need to look it up on each site individually. Subscribers will also be charged for each service separately – rather than one bundled charge. Another issue I foresee is that unlike now when you add a film on DVD to your queue and it becomes available for streaming, then it can be easily migrated. No longer. I’m struggling because most of the DVD films on my queue are smaller underground films or classics that wouldn’t be found through other services. Certainly not at a RedBox which only stocks a limited number of films.

      • nodnarb

        His letter only speaks at a high level. The details are all quite speculation.

      • @nodnarb

        The letter references the blog, which is more in-depth and specifically points out things that will not be integrated. It’s not just speculation. He explicitly says the two sites will not be integrated AT ALL.

      • Fiona

        It’s not mere speculation. Both in the blog post, and in his follow up answers in the comments the CEO explicitly states that they *will not* be integrated.

        There are hundreds of comments that remind him the integration would be technically trivial and that it’s a huge dent in the ease and usability of Netflix, but it’s clear that despite that fact, this is the plan they’re going with.

        The obvious conclusion is that this, along with the re branding, makes it easier to sell Qwikster as a separate entity later on.

    • Janet

      Very well said – exactly my feelings as well.

      • Starr

        Agreed. Perfectly stated on many fronts. I really hope Netflicks gets this. There is no shame in admitting a mistake (OK minor shame), still, I want it back together. There are few companies I have real respect for and Netflicks was one.

    • J. Brugel

      We did have a fantastic thing going, enjoyed it tremendously while it lasted.

    • Liza

      I agree that this article perfectly encapsulates the issues surrounding the new Netflix plans for the future. Splitting into two is moronic and only makes things confusing. The new name is clunky and amateurish. I only have streaming right now. I dropped the mail plan after the price hike because I wasn’t using so much anyway. Like the writer said I only used it for hard to find titles and Blu Ray. My boyfriend works at a grocery store that has a Red Box inside so if we wanted we just rented a movie that just came out for a dollar and bring it back the next day.
      If Netflix could expand their streaming library to include new releases and many many more older titles in every category including television and documentary than I could understand they switch but until then they are jumping the gun.
      By the way it might seem overly long but until it’s only streaming they need to change the names to:
      Netflix Instant and Netflix by Mail.

    • whocare

      You may try to change your life now even the life before is well. But many people want to have another new found, a new kind of d-atin-g fe-eli-ng
      ~~ βlαckwhitеHub. СòM ~~ is a great pl-ace for sing-les to get to know each other, and talk about religion, work, sports, life, relat-ionsh\ip, or more. I can assure you that your will be ha-ppy he-re

    • ty

      I canceled my netflix account when the price increased. But I would sign up again if and when the streaming options increase. Honestly I’d be willing to pay more for streaming if there were better options and new releases. For right now what they’re offering isn’t a good value for me but I’m open to coming back.

    • JET

      This article was dead on. Said everything I thought when I got the email notice about the name change. Said to be referred to as a second class citizen and asked to pay more for the priviledge.
      RIP Netlix/Qwikster!!

  • Jill

    Thank you. You just talked me out of ever having Netflix or Qwikster or whatever.

    Currently, my local library has a brilliant selection of movies, and I’ll stick with that.

    • pie thrower

      I echo your sentiments Jill. I either borrow movies from friends (and I loan out as well), or I visit the library. My other option is ON DEMAND.

      I think the Netflix idea was a brilliant campaign, but they just pooped the bed. I never used it and I never will.

      • Nancy

        And yet you have cable. With the money I saved cutting cable, I could afford the Netflix price hike that amounted to about $4 for me. I’ll probably be able to subscribe to Qwikster, too.

    • Karen

      I’m all about the library.

    • AliB

      I almost wanted Netflix, but now I’ll be sticking my good ol’ NY Public Library. Longer wait, but free movies.

    • Jay

      My library doesn’t have Blu-rays…… so, this is not a solution for me

      • ree

        Bummer. My library does!!

    • Tom

      Public Libraries have all these movies for free. Really, can you compete with that? No, I don’t think anybody can. That’s a fact.

      • Hannah

        If you have a very large, rich library system, sure. But mine’s not.

      • Ana

        You must have access to one heck of a library if you can get all these movies for free. Not to mention tv shows.

      • Heather P

        My local library’s DVD selection is much less, and much less current than Netflix’s streaming selection. Not that I’m happy with Netflix at the moment.

      • Helen

        Yeah, my library (which has become obsessed with money-making) charges $3 to check out a movie for 3 days. Definitely not the best deal

      • Diane

        You also forget, libraries tend to get fewer copies of movies, and rarely buy replacements. So if you want to rent Iron Man, a movie that has been rented by countless people since its release, you’d better prepare for skips and jumps due to scratches.

        Don’t get me wrong, I love my library, they’ve got a great selection, but its somewhat less reliable than Netflix for DVD’s and independent movies.

  • Brian

    If Netflix is the biggest thing you have to complain about, your life is pretty good.

    • Mike

      Would you rather them complain about the state of the economy on an entertainment site? Nice try at being all self-righteous though…

      • ger

        Or you could talk about both the economy and entertainment by talking about all of those lost Blockbuster jobs for which companies like Netflix are responsible.

      • Ac

        After blockbuster put all of the locally run video stores out of business in the 90′s, they kind of had it coming

      • Mike

        Just the cost of doing business.

      • Brian

        Right, how dare I try to simply bring a little perspective into the conversation. I’ll try to avoid that in the future since it’s so self-righteous. I’m so sorry to offend you. Complain away.

      • Liza

        It’s not fair to blame Netflix for all the lost Blockbuster jobs. Once I was old enough to get my own account I never found anything worth renting. Their selection was horrible. My town had four Blockbusters just a few years ago and now there’s only one. They were too big and offered too little. I also found the customer service lacking. I once talked to a guy there who didn’t know what 2001: A Space Odyssey was. At first I thought he was joking, and he was the assistant manager. That’s just not right.

      • Tom

        Liza is accruate. I went into Blockbuster over the last 5 years, and I couldn’t find anything I wanted to watch. I just assumed that all movies lately were crap. That’s not entirely true. There are plenty of good movies, but Blockbuster never carried any of them.

      • Mike

        Brian, that was not “PERSPECTIVE” you were trying to bring to the conversation. No one here said that netflix is the biggest issue in their life. But, the author of this column got paid to write a column about an issue that many are having with an entertainment company. He used a little creativity with that paycheck and decided to write the column in the form of a letter. He complained and complained because that is what he is paid to do, not because it’s the biggest issue in his life. Then, the people either at work or just interested in entertainment news or gossip came to this website and saw an article that he was paid to write. In their escapism from the torment of the issues of this world, they identified with the man who was paid to write this column. They thought, “hmmm….this isn’t the biggest issue in my life but I totally hear you!!” and then, since that’s what the topic of this column is all about, they decided to unleash everything they felt about the topic. Now….if they wrote a column called “Obama uses the Media to his advantage to brainwash the United States of America. Oh and he’s not really American either.”….you’d see some very different comments on here! And they’d probably range from Anti-Bush comments to Anti-Obama comments…and I’m sure a few Tea Party comments would be made too. I don’t think you’d see one person just randomly posting “ARGHHHH…I can’t stand this new Netflix billing structure!!!” And what is QWICKSTER!?!?!” So…let me ask you. What perspective were you trying to bring here? (Disclaimer: I randomly made up the political statement above as an example. This is not a confirmation that I subscribe to that philosophy. lol)

      • Brian

        Mike, what are you so mad at? You haven’t told me how my statement isn’t true. You’re just mad that I said it for some reason. If you look at my comment, I didn’t say anything negative about the article. I didn’t say one disparaging thing. I might even agree with him over this minor inconvenience for all you know. I was simply making a pointed statement of fact. If, and I say IF, Netflix is the biggest thing you have to complain about, your life is pretty good. Just saying. It’s a simple statement of thought coming from a certain perspective, yes perspective. I wasn’t specifically calling out the writer or anyone commenting. I’m sorry you took it that way.

      • Brian

        And I realize my initial comment might sound like it was directly addressing the writer, but that’s not how it was intended. It was more of a general comment about anyone.

    • reddogs

      And if you have nothing better to do than post trite, patronizing comments then your life obviously isn’t very good.

      • Brian

        Yes reddogs, that 10 seconds I took out of my working day to make a 16 word comment really defines the state of my life. You make an excellent point.

      • Sarah

        While this whole conversation is ridiculous, I’ll go ahead and waste 10 seconds of MY life to point out: You’ve wasted a lot more than 10 seconds. You’re clearly sitting here, refreshing the page, seeing who responded to your first comment, and then bothering to respond to each of those comments. So…yeah. Reddogs is a little bit justified.

      • Brian

        Right okay, or I get an email everytime someone responds. See it’s very easy to click on that little option down below. Also, I’m getting paid right now. I have a good enough job that pays me a lot of money even while I’m surfing the internet. So, that means my time isn’t really being wasted. In fact, I just got paid while responding to you just now. Nice try though Sarah. The bigger question is, If you think talking here is so ridiculous and such a waste of time, why are you doing it?

      • SeeJay

        Who out here reading comments thinks this Brian guy is a little bit of a d-bag? He tried to belittle the comments post with his first comment , got slammed a little, then he responded, got slammed a little more, then he wants to tell everyone how great he is because he has a job where he can surf the internet, check his phones email, and gets paid lots of money. Dude don’t try and act holier than thou or more successful than others on a Netflix article. Your job and time are irrelevant on internet comment post as well is your position of perspective in entertainment articles. I could say I have a job testing chocolate for the specific purpose of coating women’s breasts, while watching tv, and jerkin it. No one can prove me wrong and no one cares.
        But I digress, please post if you think this guy is a tool.

  • blitzgal

    I’m also worried that Netflix is spinning off its DVD by mail system in order to let it die. But I’ll still give it a shot, at least to see if they have a decent catalog of video games and if they arrive faster than they do with Gamefly.

    I tried Blockbuster and was not happy with their delivery time nor with the availability of their titles. I like to rent television series that I missed the first time around, and Blockbuster is missing full seasons of shows that Netflix has available. They also take two or three days to ship titles to me, and Netflix only takes one.

    I guess eventually I’ll have to cough up the extra cash for faster DSL because streaming will be the only way to receive content.

  • Diggity

    Exactly.

  • reddogs

    Nicely done.

  • Karen

    “That may only sound like 10 extra seconds of work, but we’re an impatient bunch.” — Hellooooo everything wrong with society today. Seriously? You’re that lazy and proud of it?

    • Joanna

      You’ve missed the point.

    • Fiona

      The way you compete in the business of pleasing “society today” is to make your products faster, easier, smoother. Blame society all you want, but the fact of the matter is that companies that cater to that win, and the ones that don’t loose. All the innovation is towards making it faster, easier, smoother, to keep up with your competitors. Netflix is *undoing* the great standing that they had in this area.

      • maggie

        Well said Fiona.

  • Trev

    agree 100%…leaving the chaos…hello my new friend Redbox

    • Jay

      To each his own…. but I dont want to have that disc sitting around racking up $1 a day when I cant get a chance to return it. Late fees are the reason i abandoned Blockbuster in the first place. I haven’t forgotted how much i hate them. Maybe YOU have… but I haven’t

      • Kyle

        The problem with redbox is that the selection is so limited. In my area there are tons of redboxes so returning isn’t an issue. They have so few movies and half of them are out of stock. It’s just not comparable to netflix or qwikster or anything else.

      • Mary

        I dropped the dvd service back in the spring and only stream with Netflix and I am happy with that. As far as DVDs go I use the library as well. I use Redbox in a pinch but I have a hard time getting back to return the disc and end up paying $2-$4 a disc when I go that route. At the library I can get DVDs and now some Blu-rays for free and I have them for a week so returning is less of an issue.

      • Tom

        I like Redbox. No credit cards. No hassle. No DRM B S. Works on any tv set, and dvd box. I like that.

    • Ben

      Use the code dvdonme and the redbox movie will be free. Everytime!

      • Tom

        Worked like a charm! Thanks!

  • ICK

    Please.
    Netflix will come back around in 6 months’ time after this fiasco. and you all will be rejoined with open arms.

    • GB

      Yes – and I may be back in six months. But, after 11 years with Netflix, I’m cancelling this month. I’m not going to keep paying for something not worth it to me right now. I sincerely hope they get better. I’ve just lost the will to stick by them any longer.

      • Caitie F

        Same here – our service is cancelled and will be gone as of Oct 13. Have been customers since the beginning.

      • LibbyP

        I hope Netflix comes around. We’re long time customers, too, and cancelled before the price increase. The combination of the two services was the draw. Bad business call.

    • Tyler

      Yep. Just like how we all returned to Myspace and AOL.

      • Ed

        We would all still be with AOL and Myspace if there weren’t better alternatives. Despite the bonehead moves Netflix has made lately, there is still no real, better alternative to Netflix. People are abandoning Netflix out of emotion, not out of careful weighing of the alternatives, which haven’t changed.

    • L

      Wait… Why is that a bad thing?? We want what we had, so if and when it comes back, we should we not return?? I don’t see why that’s a bad thing, that’s market demand, plain and simple.

  • Michelle

    Well said, sir! Bravo.

  • Lauren

    Nailed it!
    Thanks John

  • LG

    John – very well said. I completely agree.

    • Anne

      Me too!! *slow clap for John*

      • JEP

        Well said, my sentiments exactly!!

  • Dkone

    Great piece! I just got the email from Reed, and am still as offended as when they made their first money grab. I too put my account on hold and will not reactivate. I wish I had another way to express my frustration to them other then my wallet, so thank you for doing it so eloquently.

    • nodnarb

      If you think this was a Netflix money grab, you know absolutely nothing about business and how it operates. If anything, this was a Hollywood studio money grab. Netflix had gotten so popular that the movie distributors decided they wanted a bigger piece of the pie and began demanding larger licensing fees from Netflix.

      • Ed

        Maybe, but Netflix still handled the whole thing really badly. There’s always been this arrogance about Netflix that I can’t stand. It serves them right for what they’re going through — even though I’m sticking with them (for the time being anyway).

      • Tom

        Netflix is run by a bunch of old warped frustrated guys that don’t understand the technology in which they exist. It’s not about cheap customers, or the difference between 2 dollars or not. It’s about taking advantage of people before you made the case for price increases.

  • L

    Absolutely nailed the situation. Cancelled the same day I got the notice!!!

    • Fridge

      Likewise. It was bad enough having the price jump, but now having to have TWO separate accounts? Seems ridiculous to me and a huge waste of time.

      • Jay

        As opoosed to watching movies… .which a productive use of time, right?

        …RIGHT?

      • Bill

        Sold all my shares, and bought something solid more long term.

  • David

    Sure, soon as you find an online streaming service as good as Netflix you let me know. I’ve tried some other major ones and the suck, truly. Even with the price increase Netflix is still the best service and deal so I’ll stay with them until something better comes along.

    • Michelle

      Amen to that. You are more then welcome to go to blockbuster and get 3 disks at a time but you’ll be paying $5 more for the snub. And I don’t think that includes streaming.

      • Jenny

        Blockbuster is 15 bucks a month for two disks and on demand. And they already have games (but only a few). And, if one of those crazy things they call stores still exists by you, you can go swap your disk at a store instantly. And I’m not a Blockbuster shill, but we just dumped Netflix after this stupidity and went to Blockbuster yesterday, so I’m up on their current price structure.

      • Poppy

        @ Jenny – You say Blockbuster is $15 a month for 2 discs + demand? Netflix is still a better deal at $19. We get streaming and for 1 disc at a time (4 Blue-Rays a month for us). Seems like we are getting the better deal.

      • Mian

        @Poppy-I think you misunderstood Jenny, she is saying that you get two discs out at a time, not two discs total for the month. So depending on how many you watch it seems she has the better deal if she watches more than four movies a month.

      • Kat

        @Poppy — I think Jenny means 2 discs at a time and streaming for $15, so that’s more discs than the netflix plan and less money.

    • Amber

      I think Hulu has better streaming. Let’s face it they both suck in terms of movies, but Hulu has up to the last episode streamming, as opposed to Netflix which releases their TV streams when DVDs come out. This could change, but with Hulu owned by Fox, NBC and ABC it’s unlikely

      • Bill

        Hulu Plus is what I use now. It is free for newbies to use. And you can see if you like it.

      • Nancy

        I have both Hulu+ and Netflix. The selection, the quality of images, the speed and the site are all pretty dismal with Hulu+. There’s really no comparison. A lot of the TV shows that Hulu+ offers are also available on the network websites (like USA, FX, etc.). Netflix just doesn’t bother with those. Why should they?

    • blanco

      It’s not necessarily about the competitive services though. All these changes just make people think “do I really need to be paying this much extra a month for streaming or DVDs?” Sure Netflix might be the best out there, but the cheapest solution is not paying for any of these services at all.

      • tp

        I agree. That’s why I canceled. I pay way too for DirecTv not to utilize every single service they offer within my monthly fee. I will just wait to watch movies on HBO, Showtime and the like. Plus they have On Demand. Netflix just wasn’t worth the price icrease.

      • Jason

        True. We canceled our more than five year old disc queues. We’re just doing streaming now. I talked a big game when the original price change came but ultimately let it go without doing anything. This is adding insult to injury, and NOW Netflix has officially lost 60% of my monthly fee (went from streaming +2 discs at 19.99 to streaming only for 7.99). Not because we can’t afford it, but I’m not giving extra money to a greedy company that has no care for their customers. If there was an option BETTER than Netflix, we’d probably drop altogether at this point.

      • Bill

        There is a better option than Netflix. It’s called Cable TV. For the same price you get more.

      • googliezoo

        @Bill, you can get cable tv for the price of Netflix? I pay almost $90/month and don’t even have premium movie channels. Even basic (non digital, no OnDemand, no dvr) costs like $40.

    • JEP

      I cancelled my DVD subscription but decided to keep my streaming subscription for the time being unless their streaming sellection gets worse than it is now. I think the decision to impose such a huge percentage increase on its loyal customers was a huge mistake. They should have rewarded their loyal customers and charged the new comers but instead they alienated their loyal customers at the expense of corporate profits. Good Luck Netflix/Qwikster!

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