The Dark Side of Netflix

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2/10/2006

Associated Press Reports Netflix Throttling

An Associated Press article by Michael Liedtke addresses the issue of Netflix’s throttling. The article is about two years too late, but at least the writer does not gloss over the issue of throttling like virtually all mainstream journalists do when reporting on Netflix.

The article, “'Throttling' Angers Netflix Heavy Renters,” simply details what the rest of us have known since 2004. The ironic thing is that people proclaiming theories of Netflix throttling a year or two ago were called paranoid conspiracy theorists. Now, those wild conspiracy theories about Netflix are the facts of an Associated Press article.

Netflix made fools of their loyal supporters. Netflix told them throttling was a myth, they believed it, and embarrassed themselves by defending the company in front of friends and family.

Throttling existed all along, and Netflix hid the practice from the customers as long as they could get away with it. Finally, their business practices just got to be too much to hide, and Netflix quietly began coming clean.

Unfortunately, for Netflix, it may be too late. Many people have learned the truth the hard way and have warned others about Netflix. Netflix and throttling are two words that are now inexorably linked. Netflix’s reputation for deceiving customers will haunt the company for years.

You can read the Associated Press article at the following links.
“'Throttling' Angers Netflix Heavy Renters”
and
“Netflix Sends Frequent Renters to the Back of DVD Line”


Make sure to forward this post to anyone who called you a paranoid conspiracy theorist when you told him or her about Netflix’s dark side.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Too bad Blockbuster does the same thing to their customers.

Anonymous said...

Straight from the Terms of Service on Blockbusters webpage:
Selection and Allocation of Product. BLOCKBUSTER Online will automatically ship titles to you, up to your maximum number of outstanding BLOCKBUSTER Online Rentals, from and in the order that you have listed in your rental queue, subject to availability. However, BLOCKBUSTER Online reserves the right to determine product allocation among members in its sole discretion. In determining product allocation, we use various factors including, but not limited to, (i) the historical rental volume for each subscriber, (ii) historical number of outstanding rentals relative to a maximum number of outstanding BLOCKBUSTER Online Rentals allowed under a subscriber's plan, and (iii) the average rental queue position of BLOCKBUSTER Online Rentals that have shipped to a subscriber in the past.

Editor said...

Dear Annonymous,

You posted your comments in the wrong place. This site is about Netflix.

If you want to make comments about that other company, please post them at the following URL.

http://blockbusterunderground.blogspot.com.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Anonymous said...

I'm just making a point that Blockbuster does the same thing.

Anonymous said...

A question that I can't seem to find addressed elsewhere: Can you avoid the throttling by either
1) Opening multiple accounts (instead of one 8-at-a-time membership, open two 4-at-a-time memberships), or
2) Opening a new account every month (so it takes them a while to start throttling you).

Anonymous said...

that would be completely stupid [to open up multiple accounts] - you'd pay through the nose and wouldn't be sticking it to anyone but yourself. did you even think about that before you posted it?

you could potentially open up a different account every month providing that you have a different credit card/checking account. then again, that seems like an awful lot of work just to try to squeeze every last penny out of netflix. seems to me that you spend an inordinate amount of energy thinking up ways to rage against the machine.

do you have a job? a life? ever been laid? how can you watch that many movies a month anyway?

expend some energy doing something productive rather than waiting on your government check every month!

Anonymous said...

this guy who posted this last comment is a real piece of sh1t. and his mother's a wh0re.

Anonymous said...

Obviously, you cannot attack the substance of what she says. Therefore, you attack her personally by calling her mother a wh*re and her a piece of sh*t.

What are you, 12?

Grow up and come back when you have some maturity.

Anonymous said...

he is just mad because he is on the government dole and the truth hurts

Anonymous said...

So, anyway, after all that vitriol, any chance that anyone has any reasonable thoughts on my questions?

Contrary to Mr. Vitriol, multiple memberships do *not* cost any more. What I am talking about is, for the people that have big memberships, to split them in half. One 6-at-a-time costs $35.99, two 3-at-a-times cost $17.99*2=$35.98. For one penny less, you get the same number of DVDs. Then, *if* Netflix's throttling is based on number of DVDs/month, and Netflix treats the two accounts separately, you might be able to avoid throttling.

Second, opening a new account every month is obviously not worth the trouble to get a new credit card, new mailing address, and so on, but if Netflix treats a new account as really new, even if it does have the same credit card and mailing address, then it would take some time for them to start throttling you again.

Throttling is a serious issue even for us ordinary Joes that just like movies and would like to watch a movie most nights. I was on the 6-at-a-time plan and couldn't even get enough movies to watch every night! Add the fact that many people (including me) have kids for which the parents also want to get movies, and maybe that the mom and dad want to watch different movies sometimes, and you see that even the 8-at-a-time plan will not even come close to keeping you all happy, due to throttling.

Anonymous said...

why dont you actually spend time with your kids rather than plopping them down in front of the TV every night? ever think about that? do you want them to grow up like you, obsessing about how to stick it to DVD online rental agencies?

you should have your kids taken away from you!

Anonymous said...

I'd rather get my guvmint check for me smokes and dvd's and gas money to takes my baby's mother to her ged classes, word!

MIKE GREEN said...

i kinda of agree with the idea that some of these people need lives. dvd's are not crack. it's just a movie. i love movies, but some of you people are taking this stuff to seriously. talking about peoples mothers and making comments about peoples goverment checks? why not just throw around some racial slurs? it might make you feel better. netflix has to make some kind of money i guess. it's obvious if you dont like gettibg throttled you can go elsewhere, but what if there were no netflix or b.b. are you gonna rent a dvd for $1.50 - $2.50 at the video store? not including the trip, gas, time? be happy there are dvd's by mail. hopfully they make a dvd rehab for all you hypes out there.

Editor said...

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