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Brit

This place has turned into the Yahoo message boards. Its all a bunch of stock pumpers trying to get people to buy NFLX stock. Nobody wants to have an actual discussion or listen to reason.

Josh

I just got the same email raising my subscription to $34.99 and while I'd definitely prefer they didn't, I can't say I wasn't waiting for it. People need to take a step back and see it from Blockbuster's side. Now, while the way they've handled it has been deplorable, the rate hike really isn't. They really have no other choice. I see alot of people in this thread saying that they're going to cancel and they can't understand why Blockbuster doesn't see all the customers they're going to lose with this move. They do. Thats the point. All the heavy users actually cost them money every month. Every heavy user that cancels actually increases their profits. This would be like a car dealership selling cars under cost. They would sell a ton of cars, but every car they sold would actually hurt them financially. Eventually you know they're going to have to raise their prices even though they will likely lose customers. Their rationale is that the customers that won't pay over cost, aren't smart customers to be targeting anyways. Every customer is not beneficial. Blockbuster tried countering the loss by shifting their focus to candy and snacks as you've probably noticed when you've gone to return your movies. They were trying to duplicate the movie theater business, where theaters don't really make any money off the tickets. They make all their money off selling soda, popcorn, and snacks. I don't know for sure, but I'm guessing it didn't work, due to the fact they raised the rate. Whenever I was in the stores I didn't see too many people buying the candy. To sum everything up, while I don't like how Blockbuster handled this, I do understand their decision. Instead of being mad, people should realize the amazing deal they've been getting for this long. If you owned Blockbuster, and were able to give yourself everything at cost, your plan would still be more than what you were paying. Thats a crazy thought to think about. I myself will be canceling my service, only because I can't justify spending $40 a month on movies.

moviejunkie

BBO subscibers DOWN, BBO stock price DOWN, BBO customers GONE, BBO business DONE!

This is what they want. Drive the online customers back to the stores and do away with online. I'm telling you time will tell and that's what will happen. I cancelled at the last price increase.

BB, you better get a press release out quick and do some damage control - yah, good luck with that!

Edward R Murrow

BBI closed up 7.89% and is up 1.31% in after hours.

BBO will cut the 3 out program $1 per month to $15.99, lower than Netflix.

All you folks switching to NFLX, make sure you go with the 3 out program so that you can pay $1 more for the privilege of having a NFLX account.

So nobody let the facts get in the way of your decision making process.

leonardodicrapio

The price of BBI stock went up because it had gotten beaten down of late. It was trading over $5 in October but was trading very briefly under $3 earlier this month. Now BBI looks like it is headed back toward $4 a share.

Blockbuster's plans are now fairly priced. The idiot CEO who got canned but still received a reduced, yet still multi-million dollar golden parachute was responsible for literally giving away the store.

Tom

We really dont want BBO to stop video rental business. That would eliminate competition and netflix will have a monopoly and then can raise prices at will and lower service standards.
Remember when Netflix started? Its 3-out plan was $22 a month. What would prevent them to raise the price back to $22?

Edward R Murrow

The Street must thinking that if BBO had 3 million customers and lost money on each customer then goes to 2.5 million customers and makes money on each customer, that BBI is heading in the right direction now and professional investors are bidding the stock up.

You can get the exact same 3 out program from BBO for $1 less than what NFLX charges for a 3 out program. Time for NFLX to slash prices.

Tom

Edward -- exactly. If this makes BB profitable, then their stockholders reap a windfall.
As regards netflix, they will be under pressure to reduce prices now. With the postage increases and larger inventory they will need for new customers they may be unable to do so. And instead raise prices to maintain profits esp since most of these new customers will be heavy unprofitable users.

Bryan

I'm on the BB 3-out unl./5 in-store exchanges at $17.99 per month and got the notice of increase to $19.99. Big deal, still totally worth it. I was surprised that prices didn't go up on me when postage rates when up.

Bryan

I'm on the BB 3-out unl./5 in-store exchanges at $17.99 per month and got the notice of increase to $19.99. Big deal, still totally worth it. I was surprised that prices didn't go up on me when postage rates when up.

Rich

OK, here's an odd situation. I canceled by BBO account yesterday because I hadn't gotten a response from their customer service people (no surprise) on some concerns I had (conflicting information in the well-known email and with two free months I was supposed to get the last time I tried to cancel).

Today, I get an email saying they are going to address my concerns, and reinstated my account so I could take advantage of my free trial time.

While it is two free months of rentals, I'm kind of concerned that they just unilaterally put my account back on the books account without asking me first. I guess they're either making the assumption that I would've not canceled had their response been more prompt. I also have to wonder if many more people are bailing out on them than they thought and they're trying to retain any customers they can now. I really can't see that, since it's hard to believe they'd really want me back, especially with me not giving them any money for two more months.

Erns

I am in a 24.99 account which was really started at 17.99 and they raised it to 34.99.

I would give them another month of their 34.99 before I cancell to give them credits on the wonderful promo of Total Access that I enjoyed before.

So long BB, goodluck with your business and thanks for the wonderful promotions. I hope you will stay with the business to control the Netflex from abusing the online rental business.

By the way I will be switching to Netflex 3 at time sooner after I cancell my BB. Netflex has a wide selections of movies and excellent website compared to BB.

Laddy

OK so my plan goes up $2.00 to $20. For that I get 5 in-store plus another 12 or a total of 17 the way it usually works out for me. I could actually get more but 17 is about all I can handle to get viewed in a month. Maybe with the strike I'll watch more DVDs. Anyhoo, that works out to a little over a buck per movie. That's still 5 more titles than I'd likely get from NF in a month's time, plus I'll get new releases of movies I really want to see by doing an in-store exchange. Still a bargain imo. Even for the 3-out unlimited exchange plans, you can get at least 24 movies per month for $35, still below $1.50 per title. Can you drive to a Redbox vending machine for less for the same amount of movies? Maybe so, but Redbox is also limited as to titles. Sure with the 6-out NF plan you can likely get as many titles, but you lose the convenience of getting new releases when you want them in-store. To each his own though.

dislexic

It's B.S. I do think they targeted the heavier users because I've used blockbuster online since they were mail only. The worst thing about the price increase is 1.) timing and 2.) they're not freakin adding anything to the package. I could accept a price raise if it included game rentals instore, or more out at a time. $35 a month is insane just for the convience of getting new releases faster. For that much you can use the kiosks and rent a movie every day. You can get 6 out at a time with netflix which includes HD-DVDs, faster shipping times, and like 36 hours of download movies a month.
You don't raise prices that high and not offer better service. You don't ask people around the holiday season to pay more when most of us are still thinking of how we're going to pay for all the crap we bought people for christmas. They acquired the online movie video service and have yet to actually use it. I was near quitting with their last price increase, but just finished canceling now- though pissed they only give you 255 characters to vent.

n00b

And how is targeting the heavier BBO users with this price increase NOT the equivalent (financially, at any rate) to hrottling? Just a thought.

Mike

I just cancelled Netflix, ans signed up with Blockbuster. I used to love Netflix, but now I find it very difficult to get new releases. This is unacceptable to me. I will pay a premium with BB to get what I want -- NEW Releases, when they are new. I would have gladly paid more for an upgraded Netflix membership, if they offerend it, where customers who pay more would get first crack at new releases.

Margie

Hi,

Yes, there are still people in fact, paying 17.99 plus taxes (and now they just got a raise of 2.00) for the same plan, 3 movies and the unlimited in-store exchange. I consider an abuse from blockbuster doing this. They tall about a grandfather acounts, with the excuse that the account of this people will not be affected by the raises. And yes, it depends on the usage.
THen I ask myslef, why they offered an unlimited in-store exchange, if they are going to raise everytime they think you are using it more than you should???

Jon

Hi all,

It seems that many subscribers to BBO are very upset at the latest price increases announced by the company. I suppose if I had the 24.99 plan and they raised me 10 bucks a month to 34.99 I would be a bit perturbed myself. I must say as a 9.99 one at a time w/ unlimited exchanges a month member since Feb 07, a 2 dollar increase to 11.99 a still a fantastic deal. When the value of my plan changed in July 7 to 16.99 a month. They took away my free game coupon, but kept my unlimited exchanges and 9.99 price intact. I accepted the coupon loss and realize they are not making much money on the deal. Now they have increased my membership by 2 bucks ( a 21.99 plan for new subscribers) for still only 11.99. If you calculate the value considering I rent a lot of blu ray titles too. Any member with the same plan as me is getting a great deal still. If you check the rental prices at the store, DVDs are 4.59+tax and blu rays are 4.99+tax. Lets just average it out at 5 bucks a pop. So if you rent 3 movies a month via mail or exchange, this deal is more than paid for. My wife and I enjoy about 10 movies a month (5 by mail, plus 5 exchanges. We have 2 stores within blocks of our home (1 with blu ray). So for 11.99 a month we get @50-55 dollars a month worth of movie watching. It's still a better deal than Netflix for us. So no need to complain just because BBO needs to actually profit as a business. They could have given more notice, sure, but they kept my unlimited exchanges intact and for that, I will keep my money where the value is, BBO.

Tony

Blockbuster's motto for the past eight months has been "F#CK THE CUSTOMERS", and it hasn't been with just their plan pricing. Usually whenever I've had the occasional problem they've been willing to compensate me with a free movie rental. I had a problem a couple months ago and they told me to go to hell. Heaven forbid I expect to get proper service at the price I was promised. If they hate their online customers so much why don't they just shut the whole damn thing down.

That said, I'm still going to stick with Blockbuster. Netflix used to throttle me and deliberately take too long to turn over movies. I'm on a Mac so their Watch It Now feature or whatever they call it is useless to me. Besides, I don't want to watch movies on my computer anyway.

No matter how pissed I am at Blockbuster, they're still better than Netflix. Nothing beats being able to return your envelopes at the store instead of waiting for them to get them in the mail. Netflix also doesn't have an answer to being able to exchange an envelope for a movie, even if they do limit the number of times you can do it. (And like I said, I don't want to watch movies on my computer.) And most importantly, every new release isn't a very long wait on Blockbuster; unless it was an obscure new release I always had to wait a couple weeks to get new releases from Netflix.

Is it too much to ask for an online DVD rental retailer that appreciates its customers and treats them fairly? Seriously, what the hell! This is like friggin' communism.

yulog

Watch out for this bad company..i got the notice and realized in 4 months blockbuster raised ther rates over 90% from the 17.99 price 5 months ago...pathetic, also i cancelled the service the day they said the rate went up and they billed me anyway 2 days later....called there customer service and they told me they dont refund, they also said there are no supervisors at there customer service site(Liars) i hung up and called again found out they have supervisors there , they also have corporate numbers that they can patch you thru to(this is an answer machine and they dont call back) and they do give refunds.

key point -they are not allowed to charge your credit card an increase without your okay, they did this to me and that is fraudulant...call your credit card and dispute charges(the more charges disputed, the more credit card companies will go after blockbuster for being shady

bigc

Anybody that puts up with bb's latest price increase has to have a screw loose. At $35 a month it comes to $420 a year for dvd rental. Who is to say it's going to stop here. If they want to increase their rates almost 100% they can stick their dvds where the sun don't shine and I told them that. If enough people jump ship maybe they'll get their head out of their butts.

Valencia

This evening I decided to look around on the Net to find out if there were as many unhappy people as I over this Block Buster Online price increase. I was happy to know I am not alone.
I've been with BB since 06. I dropped Netflix after BB started in in store exchange program. Then as we all know, the price increase in September came but I stayed with BB...eventhough they took the coupons away. Then for my Christmas present I received another price increase announcement and after careful thought, I decreased my membership to the 5 a month in store exchange from the 3 out unlimited exchange. I'm also considering going back to Netflix. Getting screwed without the benefit of a kiss sucks!

Ken Hanscom

Amazing, here we are a month letter and my plan did not change. I did not get an email either. I posted about the experience here:

http://www.somelifeblog.com/2008/01/blockbuster-total-access-1799.html

Jay K

Have used both and other than missing game rentals from BBO, NF is the answer.
We are on 3 out at a time, not heavy users.
We cut back during the summer since they sit unwatched.
We live one "mail day" from the Tacoma processing facility so turnaround is fast.
In between movies we use NF's online WATCH NOW to catch up on missed TV series, or fun, older (donated the VHS tapes) movies. WATCH NOW gives DVD quality, pauseable, searchable, streaming video over <=54mbps wireless on a 1.6G, 512mb laptop. Hardly cutting edge tech.

Todd

Is anybody else upset that BB started charging more without approval? I do not read every email I receive so I missed the notice. The previous rate change left me with fewer services, not an extra $10 charge. I would think this would be disputable with credit card companies if you choose to cancel.

LC

Last night I talked to someone at a Blockbuster
store. They told me they are still getting a 3 at a time UNLIMITED in store
exchanges for $19.99. In other words they were never subjected to any of the
price increases or change in terms that Blockbuster imposed on some of us with
little notice. I emailed Blockbuster online about this. Here is the response I
received:

Thanks for contacting BLOCKBUSTER Online Customer Care.

Based on usage,
some customers won't see either an increase in price or a change in plan terms.
Some other customers will be given the option to move from a plan with unlimited
in-store exchanges to a plan with monthly limits on exchanges, but at no price
increase from their current plan. Finally, again based on their usage, some
customers will be given the option to stay on their current unlimited plan, but
at an increased price.All Blockbuster members have a choice and can always
change their current plan to another offering.
Sincerely,Edgar
Customer Care Associate
BLOCKBUSTER Online

So, on top of the "next business day" issue, the huge price
increase, and significant change in terms, I find out Blockbuster used some
arguably arbitrary criteria to allow some customers to keep the original terms
and price while the rest of use saw huge price increases and / or a material
change in terms. Again, I would suggest you contact the BBB and your state
Attorney General.I asked Blockbuster for clarification and specific details
about the criteria used. I will post those when I receive them.

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