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The Netflix SCAM!!

 
 
Derek Janssen
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      02-11-2006
Sam Rouse wrote:
> In article <(E-Mail Removed) .com>,
> "wunnuy" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>I'm
>>sick of people who stick up for Netflix's false advertising by WHINING
>>that people who complain about it should just be happy with what they
>>get. That's not the point. The point is, Netflix claims one thing and
>>does the opposite. If they make "Throttling" part of their advertising,
>>then no one will "whine" (except for you I think).

>
>
> Well, if your little crusade results in a fixed monthly limit being applied, I
> will have something to whine about on the rare weeks when I have the time and
> desire to watch 7 movies in 7 days. As it stands now, when that happens, I
> still get my more typical 3 per week for the rest of the month, with one-day
> shipping.


And there's a point we *usually* see in these Netflix whiner-wars
threads right about now, and has so far been conspicuous by its absence:
We're sad that throttling "won't let" us rent twenty movies a month...
Which raises the obvious and quite reasonable question of just how in
heaven's name CAN you "rent twenty movies a month" on a 3 or 4-out plan?
0_o??
(I, for example, have only been averaging three movies a week on my
3-out plan, until I recently upgraded to four movies a week on my 4-out
plan...For some reason, that's never particularly struck me as odd.)

And usually, the detractors are quite happy to answer it:
"Yeah, I got their whole system figured out, I know how to shake 'em
down!--I watch the whole movie in one sitting, and then I go out at
midnight and drop it in the corner mailbox so it'll already be returned
by the first morning pickup, and I can average five or six in one week
and keep that twenty-record going, yeah!"

Um...well. Goodness. We DO like our "free" rentals then, don't we? :/
Gotta admit, that's certainly pulling a smarter fast-one on those greedy
corporate bastards than the *rest* of us, who are unimaginative enough
to simply kick back on a Friday night and watch that recent movie we
missed in theaters, and maybe an episode off the latest "24" volume,
over a couple nights, retire to bed, and drop the envelope in our handy
front-door mailbox the next morning for the postman...
Seeing as we're not THAT obsessed with home-theater--and merely wish to
have a rental in our mailbox because we got tired of driving out to
Blockbuster to return them--rather than calisthenically spend a
conscious portion of our spare time trying to get something for less
than we paid for it.

....Which is the target audience of the poor "throttled" customer:
Normal people, who merely patronize a service at the face value at which
it is offered, and who, the company can confidently predict, will *not*
go excessively out of their way to bleed them dry.

Derek Janssen (and if WE'RE "normal", then...)
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Alpha
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      02-12-2006
> So, my prediction is that throttling won't stop
> (or perhaps a limit will be imposed, but I hope not), advertising will
> change,
> Netflix will continue to be successful, and a small percentage of folks
> will
> continue to whine.



As another poster pointed out, this technology has now peaked. The future
clearly is streamed video, not physical discs. Netflix has already started
investing in streamed video, and that is perhaps why they need to maximize
revenues .. to invest.



 
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afn03488@afn.org
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      02-12-2006
Jeff Rife wrote:

> ((E-Mail Removed)) wrote in alt.video.dvd:
> > .... I'm assuming they meet the volume requirements for the
> > rates quoted and the pieces qualify for the single ounce rate.


> That second part is probably the issue. Although I'm not familiar with
> Netflix mailers, a DVD plus a fairly flimsy cardboard sleeve weighs
> about 35 grams, which would put it just over the limit.


Which would add 48 cents to the round trip cost.The mailers I have
seen are more like paper than cardboard. In as much as a DVD itself
about 0.6 ounces, I suspect NetFlix has speced their mailers to remain
under the limit while limiting loss thru breakout of the contents.

The USPS once billed me an extra 23 cents per piece for exceeding
the limit by 0.06 ounces. That's the nice thing about Standard Mail for
things like AOL offers, you can go to 3.6 ounces at the single piece
rate so packaging can be more substantial. Unfortunately, you can't
get the same speed of delivery.

 
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Derek Janssen
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      02-12-2006
(E-Mail Removed) wrote:
>>
>>>.... I'm assuming they meet the volume requirements for the
>>>rates quoted and the pieces qualify for the single ounce rate.

>
>>That second part is probably the issue. Although I'm not familiar with
>>Netflix mailers, a DVD plus a fairly flimsy cardboard sleeve weighs
>>about 35 grams, which would put it just over the limit.

>
> Which would add 48 cents to the round trip cost.The mailers I have
> seen are more like paper than cardboard. In as much as a DVD itself
> about 0.6 ounces, I suspect NetFlix has speced their mailers to remain
> under the limit while limiting loss thru breakout of the contents.


Back before the national-scale '01 rehab, they used to use cardboard
mailers:
I can remember them experimenting with five or six unworkably elaborate
--and expensive--safe-mailing ideas (how about a plastic envelope with
foam inserts?) before settling on their current short-sheeted paper
envelope that keeps the disk in place, with no room for movement or
damage, and still keep within letter-weight limits.

Which postage issue might also explain the "Hey, why don't they rent
2-disks together anymore?" complaint of several years ago...

Derek Janssen (remember THAT one?)
(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Sam Rouse
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      02-12-2006
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>,
Derek Janssen <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> (E-Mail Removed) wrote:
> >>
> >>>.... I'm assuming they meet the volume requirements for the
> >>>rates quoted and the pieces qualify for the single ounce rate.

> >
> >>That second part is probably the issue. Although I'm not familiar with
> >>Netflix mailers, a DVD plus a fairly flimsy cardboard sleeve weighs
> >>about 35 grams, which would put it just over the limit.

> >
> > Which would add 48 cents to the round trip cost.The mailers I have
> > seen are more like paper than cardboard. In as much as a DVD itself
> > about 0.6 ounces, I suspect NetFlix has speced their mailers to remain
> > under the limit while limiting loss thru breakout of the contents.

>
> Back before the national-scale '01 rehab, they used to use cardboard
> mailers:
> I can remember them experimenting with five or six unworkably elaborate
> --and expensive--safe-mailing ideas (how about a plastic envelope with
> foam inserts?) before settling on their current short-sheeted paper
> envelope that keeps the disk in place, with no room for movement or
> damage, and still keep within letter-weight limits.
>
> Which postage issue might also explain the "Hey, why don't they rent
> 2-disks together anymore?" complaint of several years ago...


Yup. Since they're now getting a lot of their discs made specifically for them,
I wish they'd convert the double discs to flippers, but I imagine that the
studios would charge some kind of royalty or other price uplift that would still
make it unprofitable.

It's also worth pointing out that in the beginning, their only distribution
center was in San Jose, which meant 2 and sometimes 3 days in transit each way,
even here on the northern left coast. It still seemed like a good deal,
compared to the local alternatives. These youngsters don't know how good they
have it - "why, when I was your age...."
 
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Derek Janssen
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      02-12-2006
Sam Rouse wrote:
>
>>>>>.... I'm assuming they meet the volume requirements for the
>>>>>rates quoted and the pieces qualify for the single ounce rate.
>>>
>>>>That second part is probably the issue. Although I'm not familiar with
>>>>Netflix mailers, a DVD plus a fairly flimsy cardboard sleeve weighs
>>>>about 35 grams, which would put it just over the limit.
>>>
>>>Which would add 48 cents to the round trip cost.The mailers I have
>>>seen are more like paper than cardboard. In as much as a DVD itself
>>>about 0.6 ounces, I suspect NetFlix has speced their mailers to remain
>>>under the limit while limiting loss thru breakout of the contents.

>>
>>Back before the national-scale '01 rehab, they used to use cardboard
>>mailers:
>>I can remember them experimenting with five or six unworkably elaborate
>>--and expensive--safe-mailing ideas (how about a plastic envelope with
>>foam inserts?) before settling on their current short-sheeted paper
>>envelope that keeps the disk in place, with no room for movement or
>>damage, and still keep within letter-weight limits.
>>
>>Which postage issue might also explain the "Hey, why don't they rent
>>2-disks together anymore?" complaint of several years ago...

>
> Yup. Since they're now getting a lot of their discs made specifically for them,
> I wish they'd convert the double discs to flippers, but I imagine that the
> studios would charge some kind of royalty or other price uplift that would still
> make it unprofitable.


Actually, most of their "specialty" conversions have been for converting
flippers (eg. TV collections) to single disks--
Presumably, to reduce the risk of customer scratches.

> It's also worth pointing out that in the beginning, their only distribution
> center was in San Jose, which meant 2 and sometimes 3 days in transit each way,
> even here on the northern left coast. It still seemed like a good deal,
> compared to the local alternatives. These youngsters don't know how good they
> have it - "why, when I was your age...."


I suspect half of them don't, and the other half are still living in
'99-'00:
Back when the service was just starting to become more popular than we
thought DVD's were going to be, but the one distribution center was
causing the service to become a train wreck--New titles OOS for
literally months, half your queue consisting of "Very Long Wait"'s, and
it was cool to be Really Angry About Those Mean Netflix People...

Nowadays, the regional multi-centers reduce wait time *and* up the
available stocks for each region, you barely see a "Short Wait" on your
queue for more than a week or two, and some of the old veterans just
can't get used to not having as much to whine about anymore.

Derek Janssen
(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Alpha
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-12-2006

"Rich" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> On Sat, 11 Feb 2006 00:37:59 -0500, Derek Janssen
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>Zodiac wrote:
>>>>
>>>>>>>READ THE FULL AP Article
>>>>>>>http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060210/...E0BHNlYwN0bWE-
>>>>>>
>>>>>>And notice how most of the complainers uncannily fall into the
>>>>>>"B-but...they SAID 'Unlimited rentals'!--WHY can't I rent 20 movies a
>>>>>>month, why, why, why??" lockstep.
>>>>>
>>>>>So the consumer has to figure out what a company means by "unlimited"
>>>>>?
>>>>>Maybe they mean slightly unlimited.
>>>>
>>>>Maybe they'll either:
>>>>A) remember that the "unlimited" term dates back to the single-rental
>>>>days, or
>>>>B) that it distinguishes from the bare 2-out plan that only gives you
>>>>four
>>>>movies a month, set.
>>>>
>>>>Much the same theory as when a restaurant advertises "All You Can Eat",
>>>>they assume MOST of their traditional customers will interpret it in the
>>>>*proper* fashion...
>>>
>>> I reckon you need a *proper* kick in the nuts ;o)

>>
>>Well, just saying, in legal terms, nobody ever actually *SUED* a
>>restaurant for not giving them All They Could Eat, as clearly advertised--
>>
>>--Oh, wait, sorry, there was that Homer Simpson episode...
>>Guess we do have legal precedent.
>>
>>Derek Janssen (law is the jurisprudence of man)
>>(E-Mail Removed)

>
> Netflix should have set specific limits, but then false advertising is
> much less effective when you tell the truth.


They have. 1. They state to right to change terms at will. 2. They state
that they give priority to those that rent fewer discs.

Read the terms of agreement before claiming otherwise.


 
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Sam Rouse
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      02-12-2006
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, "Alpha" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> > So, my prediction is that throttling won't stop
> > (or perhaps a limit will be imposed, but I hope not), advertising will
> > change,
> > Netflix will continue to be successful, and a small percentage of folks
> > will
> > continue to whine.

>
> As another poster pointed out, this technology has now peaked. The future
> clearly is streamed video, not physical discs. Netflix has already started
> investing in streamed video, and that is perhaps why they need to maximize
> revenues .. to invest.


Sure, but I don't see the whiners getting any pleasure here. Already, there's
an increasing market for 25-50 minutes worth of television downloadable to cell
phones for $1.99 a pop - that is what this new market will currently bear. This
technology doesn't make the market directly scalable - much of the
infrastructure required to deliver this product is not owned by the product
providers. Then, at the front end are investors putting anywhere from $10-200
million into movie products - they want return on their investment, and they
will get it (and are getting it from Blockbuster, and Netflix, and Comcast, and
DTV, and Dish, and Verizon, and....). So, I'm not holding my breath for
purchaseable movie downloads to be had for less than the seemingly magic average
figure of $1.50 each, and it'll probably be awhile - if ever - before they get
that low (in adjusted future dollars).
 
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Derek Janssen
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      02-12-2006
Sam Rouse wrote:
> In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, "Alpha" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>As another poster pointed out, this technology has now peaked. The future
>>clearly is streamed video, not physical discs. Netflix has already started
>>investing in streamed video, and that is perhaps why they need to maximize
>>revenues .. to invest.

>
> Sure, but I don't see the whiners getting any pleasure here. Already, there's
> an increasing market for 25-50 minutes worth of television downloadable to cell
> phones for $1.99 a pop - that is what this new market will currently bear. This
> technology doesn't make the market directly scalable - much of the
> infrastructure required to deliver this product is not owned by the product
> providers. Then, at the front end are investors putting anywhere from $10-200
> million into movie products - they want return on their investment, and they
> will get it (and are getting it from Blockbuster, and Netflix, and Comcast, and
> DTV, and Dish, and Verizon, and....). So, I'm not holding my breath for
> purchaseable movie downloads to be had for less than the seemingly magic average
> figure of $1.50 each, and it'll probably be awhile - if ever - before they get
> that low (in adjusted future dollars).


Not to mention, the self-pleasing studio tunnel-vision rush for VOD
hasn't quite seemed to have grasped the kindergarten fundamentals of
*why* people rent movies:

Yes, maybe there's some 18-35 idiot out there who wants to sit back on
his couch and remote-control his cable company for "xXx: State of the
Union"...There usually is.
Or, maybe it's NOT just the movie we want to watch when we rent a
disk--Maybe we want to listen to the commentary. Maybe we want to check
out the making-of doc. Maybe we're keeping it over the weekend to
invite a friend over. Maybe we're renting a volume of "Lost" reruns, so
we can catch up before next season. Maybe we're looking up an obscure
foreign film from five years ago somebody at work recommended to us.

But ask a studio whether people would rather download a network-selected
choice of movies, hotel style, or choose them themselves on Netflix, and
the answer you get won't travel pretty far past "People want the hip,
hottest hit Hollywood movies, in super digital sound! "
Ermmm....yeah. Like trying to explain things to a Blockbuster
New-Release shelf, ain't it?
(I mean, isn't it kind of *sad* when one of the cable-VOD selling
blitzes is "You have control over the movie!--Now you can rewind AND
fast-forward!"?)

THIS is one of the secrets to Why Netflix Is a Verb, and yes, it's one
of the secrets that killed DiVX:
If studios actually *watched* movies like the rest of us, they wouldn't
think so many new in-home technologies were Neat-O.

Derek Janssen (and that's WITHOUT the whole "price" thing)
(E-Mail Removed)
 
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Sam Rouse
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      02-12-2006
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>,
Derek Janssen <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Sam Rouse wrote:
> > In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, "Alpha" <(E-Mail Removed)>
> > wrote:
> >
> >>As another poster pointed out, this technology has now peaked. The future
> >>clearly is streamed video, not physical discs. Netflix has already started
> >>investing in streamed video, and that is perhaps why they need to maximize
> >>revenues .. to invest.

> >
> > Sure, but I don't see the whiners getting any pleasure here. Already,
> > there's
> > an increasing market for 25-50 minutes worth of television downloadable to
> > cell
> > phones for $1.99 a pop - that is what this new market will currently bear.
> > This
> > technology doesn't make the market directly scalable - much of the
> > infrastructure required to deliver this product is not owned by the product
> > providers. Then, at the front end are investors putting anywhere from
> > $10-200
> > million into movie products - they want return on their investment, and
> > they
> > will get it (and are getting it from Blockbuster, and Netflix, and Comcast,
> > and
> > DTV, and Dish, and Verizon, and....). So, I'm not holding my breath for
> > purchaseable movie downloads to be had for less than the seemingly magic
> > average
> > figure of $1.50 each, and it'll probably be awhile - if ever - before they
> > get
> > that low (in adjusted future dollars).

>
> Not to mention, the self-pleasing studio tunnel-vision rush for VOD
> hasn't quite seemed to have grasped the kindergarten fundamentals of
> *why* people rent movies:
>
> Yes, maybe there's some 18-35 idiot out there who wants to sit back on
> his couch and remote-control his cable company for "xXx: State of the
> Union"...There usually is.
> Or, maybe it's NOT just the movie we want to watch when we rent a
> disk--Maybe we want to listen to the commentary. Maybe we want to check
> out the making-of doc.


These are the main things that I suspect will be lost (and that I'll miss the
most) in the VOD-world. Hopefully, DVDs will stick around for quite awhile.

> Maybe we're keeping it over the weekend to
> invite a friend over. Maybe we're renting a volume of "Lost" reruns, so
> we can catch up before next season. Maybe we're looking up an obscure
> foreign film from five years ago somebody at work recommended to us.
>
> But ask a studio whether people would rather download a network-selected
> choice of movies, hotel style, or choose them themselves on Netflix, and
> the answer you get won't travel pretty far past "People want the hip,
> hottest hit Hollywood movies, in super digital sound! "
> Ermmm....yeah. Like trying to explain things to a Blockbuster
> New-Release shelf, ain't it?
> (I mean, isn't it kind of *sad* when one of the cable-VOD selling
> blitzes is "You have control over the movie!--Now you can rewind AND
> fast-forward!"?)
>
> THIS is one of the secrets to Why Netflix Is a Verb, and yes, it's one
> of the secrets that killed DiVX:
> If studios actually *watched* movies like the rest of us, they wouldn't
> think so many new in-home technologies were Neat-O.


Good points. For me, this is tempered with a cynical view - that art, like
technological doodads, is becoming a disposable commodity. Music is digitally
recorded, digitally purchased, ripped and shared via p2p, loaded into Ipods,
deleted, lost, forgotten, never having been rumpled and fetished in so much as
CD form with accompanying printed material. Films seem to be headed the same
way, though more slowly. The documentarian Ken Burns has noted that his future
counterparts will have a tough time, since unlike him, they won't have old
letters and photographs with which to reconstruct our era - it's all email and
JPEGs, which disappear at the touch of electrons.

> Derek Janssen (and that's WITHOUT the whole "price" thing)


OTOH, who are these people that pay $1.99 to download an episode of Lost into
their cell phones, and are they the wave of the future?
 
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