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Steve Lumley

Common sense restored. Better late than never and thank goodness. I wonder if Reed is embarrassed. On the other hand, if someone succeeds they are applauded, and if they do something that stinks they are riduculed. But Qwikster was pretty dumb.

Bob

I don't think Reed Hastings should get fired yet. It's true this Qwikster thing was a mistake, but at least he's brave enough rescind it.

Alternatively, you could see this whole thing as a net positive for Netflix. With the price hike and Qwikster plan, they lost a bunch of customers (easing the load on their systems and customer service department), but their profit increased (someone did the math elsewhere, I can't find it). Now all that's left are the die-hard customers, who will happily take whatever punishment Hastings metes out in the future. :)

RJM35126

He didnt mean they will never again have price increases.

But I would wager they are at least 18 months off.

Lots of things go up in price. They key, as others have pointed out, is as long as its a value to you, stay with them. If not, leave.

It really shouldnt be an emotional thing.

Theres lots of products/services I dont buy but I dont get my panties in a wad over them.

I am still on the 3 DVDs plus streaming plan and frankly, I hate that I pay extra for competing services.

My original plan was to switch to 2 dvds + streaming one month to 4 dvds only the next month but Im probably going to keep streaming and swap every other month between 1 & 2 DVDs out.

I find myself enjoying TV shows that I have already seen even though I have already seen them as compared to some of the bad crap coming out on DVD now.

(Plus the waits & long waits)

I can see streaming only going to $9.99 in 2-3 years and maybe even $12.99 a few years after that.

Compare that to cable and tell me its not a decent value ?

Still, as a consumer, I am hopeful that competition continues strong giving us choices and helping to keep prices down.

I dont own the stock and never will.

John

This was the smart thing to do, but they never should have put themselves in this situation to begin with.

Investors can't be too happy, since it now looks like Netflix has absolutely no clue what they want to do, or how to do about it, whether or not that's actually the case (though it's hard to see how it isn't)

I have no idea what's going on behind the scenes, but to an outside observer, they appear to be running around like chickens with their heads cut off, which doesn't instill in me a lot of confidence about their future success.

Marty B

Remember New Coke and all the free press that marketing fiasco created? Some say it was a brilliant campaign, even if the product died at at birth. Netflix has used Quikster the same way to generate tons of free press. Creating a buzz even if it's negative still put's Netflix name out there...

ObeWan Kanobe

The Almighty Consumer also gave us BACK Classic Coke didn’t they?
Kings and Queens really get the same Corporate arrogance.
There are some Henry’s and a certain Marie Antoinette they should remember…
But they won’t.
“Let them eat cake if they have no bread.”
Too much success can really be something to loose your head over if you have it up your rectum too long. 
And your stock.

AND FURTHERMORE:
NETFLIX has yet to RESET the PRICE back to days of yore.

Their EXCUSE/RATIONALE for the increase was financing splitting their business model into two houses (to support the redundant management and other overhead expense). 
I think that now we are back to the honesty of greed. 
National unemployment is at an all time high and the economy is in the toilet.

"Hey! Let’s raise our rates. Our Management deserves a RAISE for having such good ideas!"

“What do you mean our customers can’t afford bread. Let them eat cake.”
Pass the lobster and pour me some more of that champagne Mike. And slow down the Limo! I don't want to get this food on my suit on the way to the Company Lear!

John

"National unemployment is at an all time high and the economy is in the toilet.
"

Well, that's just objectively untrue. Highest it's been in a pretty long time? Yes. "all time high?" Not even close. Unemployment is 9.1%

At the nadir of the Great Depression, it was around 25%

Crow550

Well first of all I thought spinning off the disc service would mean they could focus on discs and getting more New Releases and Blu-Rays? For streaming getting more current run streaming?

Second of all Blockbuster Total Access currently has a better back catalog of Blu-Rays & games.

So is Netflix gonna still focus on discs and streaming like they said would be the advantage of this spin off? WTF? Seriously?

I thought if spinning it off meant they could get the studios to offer more current run streaming then whatever do it. Not that big of a deal.

Damn Netflix get your shit on track. They need to ask us what we want and you know listen to there customers.

Eh well see....

Crow550

On another note. Like I have said in the past.

We the people support these companies with our cash. Our Money is what keeps these services alive.

If we don't like something we can cut off there life support.

Which is why they should also focus on talking to there Customer base and keep them happy to pay.

People kept unsubscribing, there stock went down so they canceled Qwikster as they clearly seen people don't want it.

The power of the people. Never forget that and let any of these big companies bully you.

Chet

Qwikster suggested there was something big coming -- a sell-off or an acquisition or an epic content deal that would pay off for stockholders.

Un-Qwikster suggests no such payday on the horizon. I doubt this will help the short-term stock price, or Reed's rep.

It might also mean, for customers, those hinted-at user interface improvements for either streaming or rental aren't coming anytime soon.

And the terseness of this new message doesn't give me any hope that Reed really gets it. It's not "we're building a one-stop video-entertainment shop," it's "I guess you're still attached to the whole queues-and-ratings thing; go figure."

Cunxial

I understand the premise behind the move - they can have a clearer picture in terms of costs,potential profits and such.That way if either dvd or streaming show signs of tanking, they aren't financially crippled.

Not everyone can stream, whether they are in an area that dsl isn't possible, or don't have a need to pay for it otherwise.So just because you live in an area where streaming only doesn't mean thats the only option entirely.

As is, the way they handled it from the announcement (at around 5 am to avoid immediate backlash), the name (couldn't have atleast checked for twitter avalibility?), timing (right after a price increase which left bad tastes in everyones mouth.)

The apology and cancellation is just backtracking because either a)the sale of one end fell through or b)the stock fell too low for their pockets.

ObeWan Kanobe

The Almighty Consumer also gave us BACK Classic Coke didn’t they?
Kings and Queens really get the same Corporate arrogance.
There are some Henry’s and a certain Marie Antoinette they should remember…
But they won’t.
“Let them eat cake if they have no bread.”
Too much success can really be something to loose your head over if you have it up your rectum too long. 
And your stock.

AND FURTHERMORE:
NETFLIX has yet to RESET the PRICE back to days of yore.

Their EXCUSE/RATIONALE for the increase was financing splitting their business model into two houses (to support the redundant management and other overhead expense). 
I think that now we are back to the honesty of greed. 
National unemployment is at an all time high and the economy is in the toilet.

"Hey! Let’s raise our rates. Our Management deserves a RAISE for having such good ideas!"

“What do you mean our customers can’t afford bread. Let them eat cake.”
Pass the lobster and pour me some more of that champagne Mike. And slow down the Limo! I don't want to get this food on my suit on the way to the Company Lear!

Treeevor

If it isn't broke, don't fix it.

-My Grandpa

Petrey

I have had Netflix since 2000 and will stick by them in to the future. The 'increase' amounted to pennies but you cry babies act like your home insurance payment was raised. NF just added 3 to 400 new TV shows on streaming so I don't see where people get off by saying their TV shows are old. They have ALWAYS provided me with great customer service, rare movies on DVD AND streaming so you Jesse Jacksons want Hastings to 'apologize' to you South Park style? Get a life. Netflix rules. I also wonder how many here are Blockbuster hacks.

rorqualmaru

I'm so tired of the constant whining from an a very vocal and obnoxious minority among the ranks of Netflix subscribers. I've always thought that Netflix is good value for the money and even with the recent price increases this still holds true.

kh99

I have to admit, when they first announced the price changes, and even when they came out with the "apology" and Qwickster, I figured they knew exaclty what they were doing all along. But now it doesn't look that way.

In any case I agree with someone above - it's still a good value, Ive tried amazon and hulu plus and they suck compared to Netflix. I'm not canceling based on some non-existent priciple. (I did however cancel my disc plan because there aren't enough discs I'm interested in).

Cautiously Optimistic

Well I heard the good news this morning and could not believe my ears. I did notice this weekend they were down online and wondered if they were about to split the two up, but found the website had improved. I was still down about the impending split up.

Not sure what to think right now. Head still spinning from all the antics Hastings has caused. I think he woke us all up and not sure what's next from Netflix. I am stilling checking other services out just in case he goes rogue on us again. There seems to be a pattern here. Someone else needs to take the helm at Netflix and create continuity that consumers will feel more confident with.

Is the nightmare really over?

I think that SNL skit about Netflix drove home the point better than any comment here. I think I will keep checking out other options just in case Hastings gets out of his cage again. Boy Blockbuster missed a major opportunity here.

Frank Tien

Coke Classic used Corn Syrup instead of sugar - mission accomplished on switching to the cheaper sweetner.

hard to think what's cheapening Netflix other than Reed's moronic actions and statements - like that nearly every movie ever made is on DVD.

JJ

I think I am a Netflix dream customer. I have had the one-out disc plus streaming package since streaming came out. Even after the price split and increase, I kept both. However, I don't use either very much. I watch between one to four discs a month (usually only around two) and stream less than ten movies a month (usually only around five).

I didn't like the price increase, but for me it wasn't that much more to pay to keep the convenience of watching what movies I want, when I want. The thing for me is that I'm a very picky movie-watcher. I want to watch what I want to watch, and though I like brand new releases and tv shows, I also really enjoy hard-to-find foreign, classic and indie movies, and that is where netflix by-mail is the industry leader.

So that is the reason I keep the disc-by-mail package even though I watch so few a month. Because so many of the movies I want to watch are not available through streaming, or anywhere else. So for me (assuming two by-mail a month), I don't mind paying $4.50 per rental to get to watch a movie I really want to see that I can't find anywhere else.

Eventually there will be no more by-mail anywhere (I hope it is later rather than sooner) and when that happens I hope the hard-to-find movies I like will have made their way to streaming.

I didn't mind the Qwikster announcement. I wouldn't have minded two separate bills (who cares really? It's all automatic anyway), two separate websites or a different name. What I DID mind though, was that there was to be no integration at all. That was the fatal flaw in their plan.

If I could have gone to either website and knew that when I added something to my Queue or rated a movie, that it would transfer to the other site as well, then everything would've been fine and dandy. But to think that every time there's a movie I want to add or rate, I have to do twice the work at two sites? That's annoying, especially after a price increase.

Obviously, those of us keeping up with this know that there wasn't going to be any integration because they were planning on selling off one part of their company, probably the by-mail service since it was the one with the name change.

I think it was risky even if there hadn't been a backlash. Netflix is a commanding industry leader when it has both the best by-mail and the best streaming services around, and both under the same brand. By-mail may be dying, but is it a slow death and is still quite popular, and for them to get rid of it would leave them with only their streaming service, which for now is an industry leader but is quite vulnerable.

We've already seen with Starz walking away from netflix that negotiations are going to be ongoing for content and that not only may netflix not acquire some new content, if old deals fall through they may lose content they already have.

Then add in the fact that Amazon has a lot of money to throw at their streaming service and a website that is visited by millions every day. They may not have caught up with netflix yet, but they easily may in the future. Just look at the Kindle, which was not the first or best e-reader, and how it now dominates the e-reader market now simply because it had the Amazon website and marketing money behind it.

So yes, I agree with everyone else, including netflix itself, that it acted too fast for its own good, even if there had been no customer or stock backlash. Who knows if the reason they scrapped Qwikster is because the sell-off deal fell through, or because of mad investors or customers. If I were guessing, I'd say it was because of mad investors and a mad board of directors. If they were going to all the trouble of already announcing the name change and separating their corporate buildings, I think any "deal" they may have had in place to sell the by-mail would've been pretty firm, and if not they could've found another buyer.

If part of the reason the website and company was going to split into two was to free up the separate streaming and physical disc services to improve their deal-making capabilities with studios, then I would suggest they go through with the company split anyway. They could keep "netflix" for streaming and have a site called, say, "netflix classic" for by-mail. These WOULD offer integration, so you really only ever have to visit one site. And it would free up the businesses to operate individually to help netflix acquire more content at a cheaper price. And when they do finally sell the by-mail branch off, which we all know is a matter of when and not if, then the new owner could rename it and, unless the new owner also has streaming (such as Amazon), they could possibly make a deal where integration between the two websites would still be available.

Gobotron

This is the best news I've logged onto the internet to read since 2002 when Spielberg made Universal include the original version of E.T. with the $15 DVD set instead of only making it available with the $60 one.
This is like the New Coke fiasco of 21st century.
The only change I made was going from 2-out to 1-out. I will always keep discs and streaming because I'm in this for the wide selection, and will not limit myself.
Sure this may change in the future, but so what? I'm sick of people always pointing out what will be different a couple of years from now. In the world of tech/internet trends, that is irrelevant. We consume and use what is convenient to us now.

Paolo

This qwikster/netflix spin that happened is about as historical as Pepsi clear!

Paul

"You don't actually believe Reed when he says ..." There is Netflix's new major problem. Few are likely to believe Reed for a while, or the chief content officer, or anyone else doing PR for the company. They've dug themselves a nice hole that will take a while to crawl out of.

That said, as others have pointed out, the service hasn't changed for me, and I continue to subscribe and use both DVD and streaming. I will continue to use it as long as it provides good value, which for me, it does.

Thesuperfe

@ Anthony -- insider trading hmm, that makes sense. When I first heard about the ridiculous decisions one of the first things I thought was that it was deliberate - either permanent sabotage or someone trying to get people to sell their stock, cause the price to tank, then buy it up at cheaper price.

Peter

Wow. Hastings is well on his way to taking New Coke off the hook.

FrankR

So let me see, Netflix is doing us a favor again by rescinding a stupid idea they had and we should be happy because they listen to their users? How lame can you get? It is clear that Netflix has zero understanding of their customers and seem to care less. I found their line about the price increase amazingly snarky, why even bring up in this context if you are doing nothing about it, you are just reminding people what douches they are.

Old Timer Too

With the purchase of the failing BB bricks and mortar approach by Dish Network, it is entirely possible that NF will now actually see competition. With a sagging economy, NF's actions over the past several months have left a lot of people wondering what NF was thinking. I think it's obvious that they weren't. Greed has finally invaded the upper management ranks at NF and whenever that happens to a corporation, they start the long spiral downward to oblivion.

Face

This is good news, especially since the Qwikster name is obviously the unholy brainchild of Satan's marketing director and the creator of the Sham-Wow. But, even with that god-awful name I still would have preferred depending on a bankrupt homicidal mail service to deliver those red envelopes over the paltry streaming collection, which incidentally offers two or three new releases, a billion anime films and Spongebob. Even the most half-assed online MBA from Diploma Mill University wouldn't bet the farm on that.

Rob

Personally, I think it was a practical joke by Netflix. Hastings forget to yell "Gotcha!" though.

Seriously, I like Netflix because I can get obscure DVDs from them, though I don't think my taste matches most of their customers. I'd be sad if they went to streaming only, because I suspect I wouldn't be able to get as many titles as I can now.

Amitrajit Chatterjee

Finally some sensible decision from Netflix. Not sure what's going on but really hope there are some responsible people still in the comapny who will not let it go down the drain. The CEO is not one of them.

al

GREED will kill netflix

name

I didn't get the e-mail. Possibly because of my profanity-laced reply to the first e-mail.

Lokochon

stop your crying around!!! Cable/Dish/Direct TV increase there rates and package a bunch of crappy channels for much more and nobody says nothing. Get a life NETFLIX RULES !!!!!!

Niggs

@Tomguy

Saturday delivery probably will not be dropped for at least two years. So your dvds per month will not drop to that low any time soon. You were a little hasty.

I am not at all surprised about the price increase. The past few years I've often wondered how they were ever going to make dvd delivery sustainable with the rising cost of postage because of gas prices. My family has a larger plan (3 dvds and streaming) so our bill only went up about $2.50. Guess we were lucky.

Mike

An additional price increase is reasonable-like every other business. But Doubling the cost and trying to justify it by dividing the companies is just greed.
The part that really burns me is the underhanded tricks to mandate that you use BOTH services. Several streamed series have some or the final episodes only availabel by DVD.
Dumping Netflix and opting for hulu and blockbuster (for example), will eliminate this ploy. Neither streaming or DVD only businesses want their customers to go to another service.

Crow550

Does Netflix have the Star Wars Saga on Blu-Ray because Blockbuster does.

I mean if they are gonna raise disc rates. Then well get more titles! They said Qwikster would make it so they could focus on more titles. So will they still focus on it or what?

Back To The Future Blu-Ray Trilogy?

Jurassic Park Blu-Ray Trilogy?

Jason

One thing people got to keep in mind, though not the main factor, is that transitioning from disc rentals to streaming is a new concept even though it has been a big thing for years now. It has been clear that what consumers want for a decade or two is to what what they want when they want.

Netflix and comcast (not sure if there were others) seen this early on and rolled out a way to do that. With the uncertainty of how much it would cost in the long run. Considering that the TV and movie industries would ultimately get greedy and jack prices to obtain the content up, it was inevitable that they would have to raise prices to provide the content.

In netflix case they also have to figure out what to do with the discs by mail part of the company that started the company in the first place. Both getting rid of it and going all streaming are unknown territory. And it isn't just them that don't know what they want. Many maybe even most consumers aren't sure what they want. Thats why many do both streaming and discs by mail and still have cable/sat TV, and some even still use the local video store or redboxes on top of all that.

Now keeping both sides of the company under one name and one site doesn't mean they can't operate both sides (semi)independently of each other under that. But because the future consumers want is instant access to whatever they want to watch whenever they want to watch, ultimately discs by mail has to go.

Which means as they phase out titles by disc they need to replace them in the streaming catalog. Ultimately shrinking the number of customers getting discs by mail and slowly hiking the sub price for streaming. Ultimately it will be the best TV movie viewing option. Cable/sat companies see this and is why they too are investing in a delivery method for consumers to watch what they want when they want to. Netlix currently is ahead of the rest. But ultimately competition will set prices since we will have choices of who will be our provider (since they will all offer everything) as the method replaces traditional TV channels etc.

gir

IMO everyone (including NetFlix) who thinks streaming will quickly replace all other forms of delivery is wrong. The studios will never willingly cooperate. The reason NetFlix has been so successful with streaming is because they have a hybrid service, and thereby retain the advantage of the first sale doctrine. For them to throw away their DVD business would be to give up their main competitive advantage. As NetFlix used to say, DVD will be with us for a long time to come.

[And those customers that are streaming-only, they undoubtedly have created their own hybrid service, getting non-streaming titles elsewhere. They still benefit from NetFlix's hybrid service, as NetFlix's streaming catalog wouldn't be nearly as large without the 12 million hybrid customers (the major portion, by a large margin).]

Stan

most of the stuff I watch is on DVD but not on streaming. i cancelled my streaming and went back to 3 DVD's at a time.

Sharky Tattoo

Since the changes to Netflix recently, I'm getting less for my money than before. With the different price changes, I've had to downgrade from 3 DVD's and unlimited streaming, to 1 DVD and unlimited streaming just to stay in the same general price range. I've also noticed the streaming is less reliable than before, with frequent stops in the video, and audio that is mismatched with the video. Even though I report each and every issue, I've never received any feedback that something is being done to correct the problem. After calling several times to voice my concerns, I'm still not satisfied. Even though I'm now paying "more for less," the only assurance I've recieved is the promise that what I'm paying for now will bring about better things in the future. None have given me a date when this future will arrive, only the constant reminder that it is coming "soon."

Its like ordering a pepperoni pizza, and being charged full price, with the assurance that someday they will actually include the pepperoni on that pizza. But for now, all I am promised is, that the pepperoni is coming soon. Is it a Pay-it-forward pizza??

One would think, a company would offer better service to justify a price increase. Not increase the price with a promise that better service is coming "soon."

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