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Hey Netflix - WTF?

The Netflix Team sent over an e-mail earlier today - our $9.99 a month membership plan that covered unlimited streaming and unlimited DVDs is changing. Now we have a choice of unlimited streaming and no DVDs or unlimited DVDs (one at a time) and no streaming (each for $7.99 a month). Or, and we're guessing this is the choice Netflix hopes we make, we can have unlimited streaming and unlimited DVDs for $15.98 a month.

We love Netflix Up until today, we loved Netflix. We use Up until today, we used Netflix streaming every day. So why's a $6 bump in price got us ready to hit the "Cancel" button on our membership? We've got three really good reasons.

First, if we keep both streaming and DVD service, we'll be paying 60 percent more in fees for the same service.

Second, just DVDs or just streaming won't give us access to the entire Netflix library. In order to maintain the level of choices we have now, we'll have to go to the new, higher priced plan. Like many of its customers, we watch streaming films far more frequently than we watch DVDs, but we like the option as an alternative to streaming. Many of Netflix's classic as well as more obscure or less popular titles are available only on DVD. Othello - the 1952 film with Orson Welles in the title role, the 1965 version with Laurence Olivier, even the 1995 version with Laurence Fishburne as the Moor - are all available only on DVD. Citizen Kane? Only on DVD. Sunset Boulevard, Singin' in the Rain? Only on DVD.

And third, even if we go with the higher priced plan, Netflix's collection of titles is about to decrease. Several of its contracts for exclusive film content (which Netflix negotiates on a studio-by-studio basis), are set to expire next year, according to CNN Money. Amazon has stepped into instant streaming in a big way, and Google is looking to increase its presence in the market; both are expected to try and steal titles away from Netflix as those contracts are renegotiated.

So, let's review: It's going to cost more to see fewer films. That's fucked up, Netflix.


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