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blackcloud13

the new "new releases" page blows. its nice and pretty and all but pretty useless.

John G.

The new page is no good. It does not list Blu-Ray or HD DVD movies. Thumbs down!

Quiet_Desperation

I don't even find it pretty. It breaks about a dozen usability rules. Now Netflix is supposedly having a poll or something, instead of just quietly leaving the old page in place and letting people in the know use it, sort of like the 30 second skip on Tivos.

I honestly cannot fathom how the mind of an American MBA works. The tortured logic that goes on in there must be breathtaking to behold. There seems to be three operational modes: "Ooo! Shiny", "Panic" and "Ass Stubborn". No wonder everything is going overseas.

And shills who defend Netflix are even better. Most of them have to be trolls, because the issues here should be crystal clear to a 12 year old. This is a pure usability issue with discreetly measurable parameters.

1. The new "New Releases" contain movies that have been out a long time. I found Happy Feet today, which was released in March.

2. People liked having the info on the site, grouped by genre. Honestly, it was the best "new releases" page out there. Now paying customers have to go to another site? This is an *upgrade*? This is considered defendable?

3. People came to the page looking to find movies they may not have heard of. Foreign files. Independent. Weird TV box set releases. Now it's multiple clicks on the category drop down and, again, there's "new releases" from the past *year*.

4. Some of the shills say that Netflix did it to cut down demand for new releases. That is call an "excuse" and not a "solution", shills. You also need to understand that your personal lack of usage of the old page does in no way devalue it. I know that might not fit with you laughably hyper-inflated self images, but it's true.

5. Why do I care what people in my city rent? Maybe a moment of curiosity, but beyond that... can someone explain that one?

Calder Holbrook

I don't find the new page useful in the slightest. I don't make any guesses as to the motivation behind the change, but I'm most grateful for hackingnetflix and videoeta.com.

Tracey

Just weighing in that I HATE this new, New Releases page! Hope they will bring back the old format or at least give customers the option to select which genres they're interested in viewing. Also, the RSS feed does not seem to be updated as of Monday night 2/31/07.

Thank you for posting the old New Releases address.

Tracey

MovieFiend

The New Release page has always had titles released within the last year. Quite frankly, from a business standpoint, it just makes sense. Quite frankly, I prefer removing the releasing this week page over other options, such as raising prices to purchase more inventory. My guess is that if this lowers demand for those new release titles, which it likely will, NF will lose fewer profitable customers, then they would lose if they don't do something to reduce the wait times for new titles. They'd lose even more customers if they raised prices.

pcdavis

I hate the New Releases page! I am unable to find the information I want - I am glad I ran across this site. I will have to bookmark it!

Fred

This is one feature Netflix has never gotten right. It's the number one reason I like Hacking Netflix. Thanks, and Happy New Year.

Leewick

The new "new releases" page is useless but if you google 'dvd movies releasing this week' ,it directs you to the BLOCKBUSTER web site. They DO have a releasing this week page.

Surt

I am convinced MovieFiend is a Netflix shill. Have you ever made a negative remark regarding the company?

ed

I really hate the changes and the fact that the releasing this week is removed. This is about the most stupid version I've ever seen. It is totally useless in this format. Enough to make me quit ordering movies from Netflix.

Sam (Netflix Shill)

Am I the only one who finds this funny?

"You also need to understand that your personal lack of usage of the old page does in no way devalue it. I know that might not fit with you laughably hyper-inflated self images, but it's true."

followed by

"Why do I care what people in my city rent? Maybe a moment of curiosity, but beyond that... can someone explain that one?"

Wouldn't "laughably hyper-inflated self image" apply to someone who lists 5 points about why the old page was perfect and the new one sucks and dismisses the "people in my city" feature?

Has it occurred to you at all that maybe not everyone uses this page exactly the same way you do? I imagine Netflix has considered this and I'm just guessing that they've polled (or looked at real data for) more users than you have.

johnnyorlando

I'm sure MovieFiend's comments are accurate as to the business motive for the revised new release page, but it f'n sucks.

Quiet_Desperation

Hey Sam, that was why I said that feature was of no use to *ME* and ASKED specifically if anyone found it useful. I even wondered if someone would be dense enough to think I was being hypocritical, and worded it specifically to avoid that.

But there's always someone denser than one can anticipate. Such is life on the interwebs.

And listing the specific reasons why people liked the "Releasing This Week" page has absolutely nothing to do with my self image. It's a collective of my POV and the POV of many of the posters over on the Netflix blog. I clearly delineated the advantages of the old page.

OK, I'm done with you.

Sam

If your intent was to avoid hypocrisy you did a very poor job of it.

Your list was not objective, it was combative and judgmental. You take data from a small, very biased subset of Netflix users and try to generalize them across all users.

You try to present your personal opinions on usability with "discreetly measurable parameters" (a term which, if not total BS, is applied completely inappropriately here).

You have no real data on all Netflix users. How many have used the old new releases page ever, how many use it every week, how many add movies from it and how many move them to the top of their list, among many others that I'm sure Netflix designers and programmers looked at before making the change.

Do more users (including the 99% who do not check their queues every day and blog incessantly about it) find more movies on the new page or the old one? Do you have any idea?

Let's see the Netflix guys have all that data (and much more) and most of them have many years of experience in designing and building the site. And yet somehow I should weigh your opinion higher than theirs? Um, right.

Would you have the same passion if they removed my beloved "in my city" feature? Would you still defend it when they told you that only 5% of users used it regularly and it cost them millions to maintain? I don't think so (and I wouldn't ask you to).

Ijiwaru

The removal of the releasing this week page is a bad move. It was the one feature I used every week to add films to my queue. Looking through the new films of the week by genre was particularly useful. Now, searching the site is too much of a bother.

Why make it harder for customers to find the DVD's being released each week?

Call me frustrated.

Sam

"Why make it harder for customers to find the DVD's being released each week?"

The obvious answer is that this feature costs the company too much and doesn't offer their customers (all of them) enough real value for that cost.

Think about this. Is this feature widely used by the average Netflix customer?

If not, then getting rid of it (or replacing it with something more people will use) isn't a big deal.

But if it is hugely popular, then millions are looking at this page every week, adding new releases to their queue, many at the top, and either costing Netflix a fortune to satisfy this short term demand or making their users unhappy that they can't get what they think they want immediately.

So is there a real need for people to see what's been released this week or is the demand artificial? Any software designer will tell you that removing any feature (or even radically redesigning) it is a customer nightmare. People who never knew they had a need will complain vehemently if something they are used to is taken away (even if they never would have thought they needed it beforehand).

If Netflix could find a way to keep most of their users happy while reducing their costs (and therefore our costs), shouldn't they do it, even if it risks annoying the minority?

Do most people who use the old page really need this weeks list? I don't think so and apparently neither did Netflix.

Despite the flaws of the new page, I would be very surprised if they go back to the old and keep it as a permanent and prominent feature. Over time, people will forget that it existed and new users will not miss it because they never had it.

OdomZ

I called Netflix customer service today to put my account on vacation hold because I am going to Maui tomorrow!

Thought while I had them on the phone, that I would ask a couple questions about things I was curious about. So I asked the rep (Michael) just how many calls he has recieved about the "Releasing this week" deal being gone. Michael said that since the page has been removed he has been getting on average 2-4 calls a day and he gets about 100 calls during his shift. He directed me to the Community Blog where there is still a link to that page but warned me that it might not stay there long term, there just aren't any guarantees and the New Release page is still being worked on.

I asked just how many people have cancelled over it and he said that most of the people have been understanding and there wasn't anyone that cancelled the account during the call. Went on to say that after every call a poll pops up for him asking him if the caller was calling about the Releasing this week deal, yes or no. So they are keeping track of it. He seemed to be a really friendly guy and he could probably tell that I wasn't upset about it which helped out as well. Said that he liked to check out the page as well but since he works for Netflix and looks at so many accounts he has way more movies in his queue than he can possibly go through as is. More of a research thing for him so he could be educated on what movies are coming out.

I asked if there have been a lot of people leaving Blockbuster, for Netflix, since the price hike and he said that he really can't comment on that but he did laugh.

We talked about movies and I was very surprised on knowledgable he was and how he didn't rush me at all even though I kept him on the phone for a good 20 minutes! Very refreshing.

Just wanted to share that.

Super-Bat-Man

I like it but not completely. I think this type of scrolling design only works with the way amazon uses it because it expands with the window. I would love it if that happened. but I have a big monitor, some people don't. what they need to do is make a customizable home page similar to yahoo. that way if I want a new release scroller that expands with the windo I can have one and I could also throw in a top 25 action adventure movies box and a box to see what my riends are watching and a box for comments & reviews.

Finngall

The "releasing this week" page is the only one of the New Releases pages that I use, and the newimprovedwhizbang New Releases page hasn't changed that. Then again, I keep very few recent Hollywood titles in my queue--if I'm interested in one of those, I'll wait until it reaches the top of my wife's queue. She'll usually add movies to her saved list as soon as she sees the previews and allows them to percolate to the top of her queue "naturally", by which time the new release frenzy is long past and she can get them without delays...

Amblus

"Then again, I keep very few recent Hollywood titles in my queue"

Right, but that's the point - many of us use the "Releasing This Week" page to find obscure or independent releases that we might not otherwise know about. I know that's what I used it for. The shiny new page is pointless and doesn't give me the information I really want.

William

Sam, you wouldn't understand a bus if it hit you at 60 mph.

Sam

Amblus, I have a hard time understanding how the old page is well-suited for the task you're trying to accomplish.

I'm not sure how you define "obscure and independent" releases, but how do you identify those releases from that page? With the old page you get no details until you painstakingly hover over each of the movies. You have to hope the title catches your eye or go through them one by one, which can take several minutes.

What happens if you're too busy one week to check or you're out on vacation or you just miss a title? That movie is lost to you forever.

If it were me, I'd rather go to the Independent genre page and browse a list of recent releases (over the past month, 3 months, year, ...) from there. Or look at the suggestions that Netflix has made for me, the Independent top 25 list, a critic's list, a list from a friend with similar interests, click through on my favorite indie directors, actors, studios ...

There just seem to be so many better ways on Netflix of accomplishing what should be everyone's goal - watching entertaining and interesting movies that they haven't seen.

lynda

I HATE the new page, it is useless.

l sagris

i dont know what they were thinking about bring back the old new releases page.

Amblus

Replying to Sam:

Sure, but with the "releasing this week" page I know they're brand-new releases and not something I've browsed or watched before. I don't have to waste time checking out a list of recent releases (from the past few months or whatever) and wondering if I've already considered or seen them.

Plus, with the old page they're all in one tidy place, so I can go down the list from title to title and check each one out quickly.

And I define "obscure and/or independent" movies as, uh, any movie made by an independent or small film company, or a film that's not well-known.

Sam

So wouldn't your needs be met then if they just had a "not interested" button on each suggestion, and for convenience perhaps a single button for all 4 suggestions currently in view? Then you could dismiss those movies and never see them in any of your recommendations again. You'd get a whole new set of movies that, at least statistically, you'd be interested in and they'd be available right away in most cases.

You can click "Not Interested" on the rating bar in many other screens, but it's not in the new "New Releases" page. And frankly, it does not yet seem to do what I want anyway.

This kind of suggestion/solution does seem to meet the stated needs of those who don't want to part with the old page, and yet people insist on staying with the old.

BTW, with this "Not Interested" feature you don't really need to see all genres at once. Just view the genres you're interested in when you're interested in them, rather than being forced to scan the entire list each and every week.

Mike

I hate the new page. I want the old one back.

Amblus

"This kind of suggestion/solution does seem to meet the stated needs of those who don't want to part with the old page, and yet people insist on staying with the old."

No, it really doesn't. The "New Releases" page has films listed that were, in some cases, released weeks and even months ago. This means I'm looking at movies that I've already decided I don't want to see. By checking the "Releasing This Week" list I can more effectively chose what I want to add to my queue. Incidentally, why does it bother you so much that other people use this page in a way you don't find helpful? Just because you don't need it doesn't mean it isn't a great product for other customers.

Sam

Amblus, did you even read my suggestion? You don't see the same discs again and again because you click the button that says "Not Interested". Those movies will never appear in the "New Releases" list again.

I don't need the page and it is useful to others. But when others do use it, it costs me (either in delayed movies or increased service fees).

So I'm making practical solutions to make everyone happy. The alternative is to be selfish and stubborn and hope our opinions carry more weight with Netflix because of the sheer annoyance factor.

catalina68

I tried to post a comment to the netflix commnutity blog, but it wouldn't work for me. So maybe they will read my comment here.

There is a simple way to make everyone happy with regards to the issue of only showing movies on the new releases page that are "available now". In the "Your account" page, under the heading "Account preferences" add another checkbox "Enable display of movies that are not "available now" in the "new releases" page". This will allow those of us who can deal with the occasional (frequent) new release that is not available now.

And if they insist on sticking with the slider version of the page, I would like to see the option of selecting from three choices 1. Large images (4 per slide), 2. Small images (10 per slide), 3. No images (20+ per slide).

And, as an aside, there are plenty of other ways that the website could be made customizable to the users preferences. I don't watch many movies more that once. I would love to have the option to disable the display of any movie I have already rated.

catalina68

I tried to post a comment to the netflix commnutity blog, but it wouldn't work for me. So maybe they will read my comment here.

There is a simple way to make everyone happy with regards to the issue of only showing movies on the new releases page that are "available now". In the "Your account" page, under the heading "Account preferences" add another checkbox "Enable display of movies that are not "available now" in the "new releases" page". This will allow those of us who can deal with the occasional (frequent) new release that is not available now.

And if they insist on sticking with the slider version of the page, I would like to see the option of selecting from three choices 1. Large images (4 per slide), 2. Small images (10 per slide), 3. No images (20+ per slide).

And, as an aside, there are plenty of other ways that the website could be made customizable to the users preferences. I don't watch many movies more that once. I would love to have the option to disable the display of any movie I have already rated.

Sam

"There is a simple way to make everyone happy with regards to the issue of only showing movies on the new releases page that are "available now"."

Your checkbox should probably just be "Enable display of movies that are not immediately available." There's no reason it shouldn't apply to all searches.

But I don't think it solves the basic problems.

Users who check this box will add movies to their queues and many will immediately move them to the top (as they do now). So they will still increase the demand for those titles and slow down delivery for all other customers.

Plus, almost all of the vocal minority who used the old page would check the box to duplicate the old experience (they all claim to need to see a list of each and every release every week).

So the load wouldn't diminish any more than just keeping the current page unlinked and undocumented (but regularly updated).

Now if instead that page locked added movies at the bottom of your queue until they were not in demand it would definitely solve the problem. But try explaining that to the average user.

You're definitely right about the other two things. You should try to post on the blog again, most likely you just messed up the captcha (wavy text code) and need to enter it again.

Amblus

"Amblus, did you even read my suggestion? You don't see the same discs again and again because you click the button that says "Not Interested". Those movies will never appear in the "New Releases" list again."

I did read your suggestion and, if your theoretical suggestion was possible, it would involve me having to go through all the "new releases", four at a time and marking each and every one that I'm not interested in. How is that convenient? And hey, what's wrong with wanting to know what's being released THIS WEEK? I want to know what's new. Why is that such a problem?

Sam

I don't see how this is significantly harder than what you do now. There are 30 titles in this weeks list, so assuming you were only looking at the "all new releases" slidebar you would scan-click 8 times. And the only reason you have to do it 8 times is because they are giving you more info (e.g. the box cover and the rating) and don't have the screen real-estate to show more titles.

In reality you would probably only look at a few specific genres and you'd skip the crap that you almost never select. So it would probably end up being faster and more efficient.

But yes, it would be different.

"And hey, what's wrong with wanting to know what's being released THIS WEEK?"

Are you willing to pay extra for that service? If so, then there's nothing wrong with it.

kcal

Ugh!! I hate the new version of the releases. The new this week page was my favorite feature of my account, I looked forward to perusing through the new releases and selecting those I wanted to watch (who cares if there is a wait?). Renting five at a time I usually get most movies with a couple of weeks, except for the occasional unexpected "rental hit movie".

Sam,
What is your position with Netflix?

Sam,
What is your position with Netflix?

I HATE the new layout! I don't want to go through every movie ever released; I want to know exactly what is being released for the CURRENT week.

PRKL8R

I hate the new page. It's really simple: The old page was very useful. I made use of it weekly. Now the rug has been jerked out from under me. I don't need it to find out that the new Spiderman is coming out. I need it to find out about less popular movies that I've never heard of before. I have found GREAT movies that way. I had a very high opinion of Netflix before this. Now I know they're just another lying, manipulative corporation ("the loss of the page is just a software glitch that we're struggling to correct"). Why am I surprised?

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