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Why Netflix Had To Raise Its Prices

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the well-raise-my-rent dept.

Movies 574

sperlingreich writes "Last week, after movie streaming service Netflix raised its prices by 60%, the company's customers took to blogs and social networks in revolt, threatening to cancel their subscriptions. However, between the cost of mailing DVDs and paying increased licensing fees for content, a Netflix rate hike was inevitable. Is it still a great movie bargain? What alternative services are there?"

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574 comments

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Frist Pots (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839184)

Fukc yeah1

Re:Frist Pots (1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839240)

Rapidshare, Filesonic, Megaupload and JDownloader?

Re:Frist Pots (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839326)

From here [slashdot.org] :

Here's a serious answer. Statistically, blacks suffer from an inherent intellectual disadvantage so we as a civilized nation have to look after them the same way you look after drunks and old people. Blacks are naturally violent and stupid. Our options in managing them include some kind of apartheid style segregation (including jail) but that would only serve to make us international pariahs so that's obviously not happening. Our other option is to deal with them as best we can taking into account their own limitations and our limited resources. The answer society has come to is to blow as much smoke up their asses as possible to placate their self-esteem, make sure they can subsist on at least some minimal level enough to afford liquor and marijuana, and lastly, make sure they can afford a house in the projects, a big screen TV, and a fridge full of hamhocks to keep them from roaming the streets robbing us and breaking into our houses.

tl;dr: we give them just enough crumbs to keep them in line.

You know it is ugly truth but there's lots of truth in that. We really do treat them like they can't handle their own affairs or take responsibility for their own lives. Liberals portray this as the compassionate nice thing to do but is it really? How would you like to be insulted and coddled like that, as he said basically treated like drunks and old people who can't hack it on their own?

I keep hearing about institutional racism, how racism is not the thing of the past a lot of whites like to think it is, etc. What if racism has just changed form? What if it is no longer about calling them the n-word and denying them jobs and respect, or like with extremists like the KKK committing crimes against them just because they are black? What if racism has just changed into treating them like a bunch of retarded children who cannot be trusted to live their own lives freely?

If so then all of you affirmative-action supporters, "diversity and inclusion" types, Liberals, and everyone else falling over themselves to prove how not-racist you are, well, that would make you the REAL racists. After all you are the largest group still in existence who treats people differently based on the color of their skin. By definition that is racism. Even if the different treatment is an insulting brand of favoritism. I know if I was black I'd be seriously insulted by things like affirmative action, the message being I could not make it without special favors.

Re:Frist Pots (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839340)

I hope you get a particularly nasty and painful form of cancer...

Re:Frist Pots (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839778)

I hope you get a particularly nasty and painful form of cancer...

For what? Questioning the nature of the racism that still exists today? Having a different take on something than your personal orthodoxy? Let me guess, you think I cannot and do not treat black people with kindness and respect just because I question whether what we are doing is really in their best interests?

For that you want someone to suffer a prolonged, painful death? Do you suppose that makes you a good person? Does it make you better than what you oppose? You think you're telling me a thing or two. You are, but only about the evil within yourself. You are exactly like the Inquisitors who threatened people like Galileo for the "crime" of thinking freely. Does it feel good to know what you resemble?

If you want to explain your own viewpoint please do. If you think I have it all wrong and can show me the error of my ways, go for it. The forum is open. If your alternative to that is to wish suffering and death on strangers because you disagree with them, well that's just fucking childish. Not to mention evil. If this is the kind of person who supports the Liberal race-sensitivity agenda, well that's all you need to know about how good its intentions must be.

Just curious, have you ever met a black person who thinks affirmative action is an insult? I have. They tend to be responsible go-getters who worked for everything they have and don't want a handout from anyone because they like to know they earned what they keep. Do you want them to die of cancer too, or do you discriminate based on race? Oh but somehow it's not racism when you do it, right, you hypocrite?

Very much against your intention I am sure, you have only confirmed that I must be onto something true. One of the surest signs something is true and has struck a nerve is when small-minded people such as yourself cannot handle it like civil mature adults. Thank you for the confirmation.

Re:Frist Pots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839584)

I'd like to coin a new term. "Reverse reverse racism". It's where racists justify their views by suggesting that there they are being disenfranchised by an institution of reverse racism. Someday you'll grow up and learn that is in fact, not opposite day.

Re:Frist Pots (1)

TheABomb (180342) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839734)

What if racism has just changed into treating them like a bunch of retarded children who cannot be trusted to live their own lives freely?

News flash: we treat everyone that way now.

The issue wasn't raising prices (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839186)

It was the manner and the margin by which they did it. If they'd done it slowly, say $2 now, $2 more in 6 months and $2 in a year, people might complain but not nearly as much as $6 all at once.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (4, Insightful)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839324)

It's not even the all at once, IMHO.

It's the "you're getting better value with us raising the prices and nothing additional being added" spin they tried to put on it.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (4, Insightful)

uniquename72 (1169497) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839556)

This a thousand times. If they had said, "Our licensing fees are going through the roof, and this new pricing scheme will help us build an even better collection of streaming content," I would have been happy to pay a little more. Instead they told me how great it was that I was going to pay more [netflix.com] for the same service, with no suggestion that an increase in available movies might accompany the hike.

Fuck 'em.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (1)

DanTheManMS (1039636) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839668)

If they had said, "Our licensing fees are going through the roof, and this new pricing scheme will help us build an even better collection of streaming content," I would have been happy to pay a little more.

That was my first reaction as well. But think about it. Why would Netflix intentionally bad-mouth the very people they're trying to negotiate lower prices with? That would accomplish nothing except even HIGHER prices for the content.

Their hands were tied. Sure, what they ended up saying didn't sound good at all, but there's no way they could have blamed the real reason for the increase.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839798)

"...there's no way they could have blamed the real reason for the increase."

This is a fallacy. Of course they could have.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (5, Insightful)

fortyonejb (1116789) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839682)

You can all but guarantee the studios behind the licensing wrote in something to keep them from doing just that, no way they can appear to be the bad guys.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (5, Interesting)

swilde23 (874551) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839328)

When their licensing costs from the studios went from 180Million to 1.8Billion over the course of two years... what did you really expect? How much more gradual could it be?

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (1)

cob666 (656740) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839786)

I'm still unclear as to WHY Netflix has to pay licensing fees. There are no licensing fees attached to regular movie rentals so how is Netflix any different? As long as they pay for each copy that is in circulation I would think the studios would have no legal recourse.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839804)

They must have had some kind of strange contract with the content owners. Didn't Netflix's subscriber base increase substantially during the same time period? I just don't get why an increase in their costs = an increase in price when the number of subscribers has also increased. I would be more convinced if they could show the per-subscriber costs?

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839562)

I doubt that. They'd see a pattern and draw a line to where they think it will logically end. Then, instead of bad will orbiting one event, it's a growing festering hatred.

Re:The issue wasn't raising prices (0)

glwtta (532858) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839694)

people might complain but not nearly as much as $6 all at once.

Wait, all this outrage is about $6?

Wow, yeah, the monsters - how dare they!

Whiners... (3, Insightful)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839198)

My cable company wants much more than $16/mo to get the various premium channels (HBO, Showtime, etc.). $16/mo is a good deal to be able to watch what you want, when you want.

Re:Whiners... (2)

nine-times (778537) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839248)

I also think it's funny that people complain about Netflix's streaming selection being too limited, and then complain about a price hike. How do you think they're going to get licensing for more movies (especially new releases) without raising more money to pay increased licensing fees?

Re:Whiners... (4, Insightful)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839322)

Every time a new DVD becomes available on streaming, Netflix has to pay a higher licensing fee. When does it stop? What good does it do me if Netflix has 1,000,000 movies on instant streaming, but because of all the licensing fees, the service costs $100/month?

Re:Whiners... (2)

jfengel (409917) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839386)

Yeah, that's the way I saw it. Their streaming content is vastly better than when I first started using it. (In the early days it was just shy of useless.) I dropped my plan from 4 discs at a time to 3 because there is enough on streaming to fill in the times when I run out of discs. (Which isn't quite as often, since they started working Saturdays, another thing they didn't always do. That meant a disc watched Thursday night didn't get to them until Monday, and the next disc didn't arrive until Tuesday.)

It's still not nearly as good as it should be, and if they don't continue to improve I may yet drop the service. But for the moment I may drop to the two disc plan and still end up watching about the same amount of content as I did before.

Re:Whiners... (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839398)

How do you think they're going to get licensing for more movies (especially new releases) without raising more money to pay increased licensing fees?

By paying license fees per view, and not per program. If netflix expands their selection, I'm not watching any more than I ever did. What sense does it make for me to pay more to have access to programs I don't watch?

Re:Whiners... (1)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839736)

If they get a better selection of streaming movies, presumably they will get watched more often. IOW, if you stream X per month now, with a limited selection, you're likely to stream X+Y per month with a better selection. So, if the price went up 60%, just watch 60% more streams, and you're even based on your desired "per view" pricing model.

Re:Whiners... (3, Interesting)

Cigarra (652458) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839488)

... How do you think they're going to get licensing for more movies (especially new releases) without raising more money to pay increased licensing fees?

How about FIRST improving their offering, and THEN raising the price? You know, good old 'investing'.

Re:Whiners... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839712)

I would pay 15 dollars JUST fro streaming if there content didn't disappear and was greatly expanded.

I hope the new deal comes with a larger selection of titles.

Re:Whiners... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839758)

That's what they did. When they first implemented free streaming with your DVD plan, they had less selection. They've improved considerably and now they are charging extra for it.

My cost just dropped by $4 / month, because I can remove the streaming service which I don't use, instead of paying $4 / month more to keep it.

Re:Whiners... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839582)

Yes, but Netflix didn't say "the content creators are charging us more, so we have to charge more", or "we're releasing a ton of new content including new releases along with the hike". Instead, they said "what's the cost of a few more lattes a month?"

If they wanted to justify the increase as a cost-of-content increase, than they should make that public (if only so customers knew that the MPAA/etc was the enemy). But they made the price change look like a cash grab, and it's definitely a different value for what is, for most customers, a luxury expense.

Re:Whiners... (4, Insightful)

darkwing_bmf (178021) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839660)

If what is currently "dvd only" content was made available for streaming at the same time the price was hiked, then I believe most people would have been okay with it.

Re:Whiners... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839730)

Volume.

Seriously t'ho, expanded titles means expanded customer base.

Re:Whiners... (1)

phobos512 (766371) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839418)

But it isn't "what you want". It's "what's available" between the deals the MPAA allows Netflix to make and the movies/shows Netflix decides to try to obtain. More often than not "what *I* want(ed)" was not available; thus, I dropped Netflix.

Re:Whiners... (4, Informative)

oGMo (379) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839446)

My "cable" company (if you consider AT&T U-verse cable; it's close enough) wanted $120+ a month to watch what I wanted and DVR it. Corrupt video? Schedule get screwed up? Local network happen to be out? I'd be screwed. This was on top of $50-$60/mo just for internet. So now it's $50-60/mo on internet plus $16/mo for Netflix, $8/mo for Hulu Plus, and I can still buy $96 worth of TV off Amazon or iTMS and still break even!

Of course I'm sure the internet providers (who also provide TV) will start getting bitchy when people start dropping their service for cheaper options over their existing network connection. But their service is crappy and their prices are outrageous.

No sports on Netflix (3, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839614)

So now it's $50-60/mo on internet plus $16/mo for Netflix, $8/mo for Hulu Plus

I've recommended this to a couple families, and both told me they'd rather go back to dial-up than give up ESPN.

Re:No sports on Netflix (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839704)

I have had the opposite experience. Our anecdotes therefore cancel out.
Hell, when I had cable I would have given up ESPN if it saved me $0.25/month.

Simple fact; I and many like me will not pay for entertainment and watch advertising. One or the other.

Re:Whiners... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839474)

"Whining" does not mean "stating an unwillingness to pay as much for a service as I am". And yes, that IS absolutely what you meant. Therefore, you are a liar.

Re:Whiners... (4, Insightful)

sqrt(2) (786011) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839512)

$16/mo would be fair for being able to watch what you want, when you want...but that's not what you get with Netflix streaming. You get to watch what the studios approve of, for as long as they think you should be allowed to. Content trickles into the streaming library at a snails pace, and movies are frequently pulled after a few weeks. It's not all HD either, even newer movies which should be. Just because other options are also similarly overpriced does not make it right. The studios need to adjust to the new normal where they make less profit, have to deliver a higher quality of service, and give consumers the choices they want. The alternative is to keep taking massive hits from Bittorrent and non-sanctioned streaming sites. Until they realize that their stranglehold on content has ended and they need to compete with free (and that's possible, it really is), they're going to keep making mistakes like this.

Instead of raising prices and locking down selections and distribution channels they should be lowering prices, making things more reasonable, enticing people who haven't been paying to go back to legitimate channels. Release movies on Netflix and DVD at the same time, open up their entire back catalogue, make it available wherever and whenever the user wants.

But of course they won't do that. Some executive thinks their bottom line is better served by giving people less choices, charging more, suing people, and generally making the legal services the worst option.

Re:Whiners... (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839644)

Still a better deal than cable.
At this point Netflix only has to worry about amazon. If that improves selection anymore, they just added 2000 more titles, I will keep netflix only for DVDs and cancel their streaming. I have Prime anyway so amazon streaming is free to me, for now anyway.

Re:Whiners... (3, Insightful)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839784)

"that's not what you get with Netflix streaming. You get to watch what the studios approve of, for as long as they think you should be allowed to. "

And that differs from how movies are released to premium cable channels and network TV in exactly what way?

Re:Whiners... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839514)

Get a better cable company then.

How to get a better cable company? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839638)

Anonymous Coward wrote:

Get a better cable company then.

It costs thousands of dollars to move to an area serviced by a different cable company. How do you expect most people to be able to afford this?

$16/mo only if you already pay $80/mo for cable (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839552)

My cable company wants much more than $16/mo to get the various premium channels (HBO, Showtime, etc.).

My cable company won't even let me add HBO or Showtime unless I upgrade to a higher "tier" with dozens of channels I won't watch. Right now my family is on the $60/mo Digital Starter tier because that's the cheapest with ESPN; Comcast wants us on the $80/mo tier before it'll let us add premium channels.

Re:Whiners... (1)

crashumbc (1221174) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839664)

because cable is ripping off means its ok for Netflix to do it?

Netflix IS NOT a good deal after the hike and as many people as possible need to quit.

I feel bed bad for Netflix because they are getting ripped off by the greedy entertainment industry. But that is NOT my problem.

If half of Netflix's subs dropped over this it might give them the balls to stand up to the greedy bastards that are ripping them off instead of just passing the buck...

Re:Whiners... (0)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839762)

Unless everything HBO, showtime, etc and all the TV shows are available on netflixs, it's not really comparable.
I certainly can NOT watch everything I want to watch on netflix.

Maybe they realized they have a huge gay demographics, and the demographic generally has more free income. So they figure they can raise their price.

Re: What alternative services are there? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839200)

The Pirate Bay.

Re: What alternative services are there? (1)

tloh (451585) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839296)

Years ago, I began using hulu to catch up on Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse" before I started using Netflix to watch other shows. They have a smaller selection of titles, but for what they do have, new episodes of current series are available usually the day after they air on the regular networks. the annoying thing with Netflix is that it seems they wait for the DVDs to be available (regardless of anything else) before they make the streams available.

Re: What alternative services are there? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839540)

For a while Netflix experimented with showing season of certain shows as they aired, but I can't recall which ones. I'm not sure what happened to that either.

Compromise (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839214)

I'm downgrading to streaming only from netflix, and the occasional DVD from Redbox or my pulic library.

The problem is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839216)

They raised the Prices without giving us a reason for it. Was it a mistake not to raise them before? maybe. but waiting so long and then whacking a 60% increase without a reason? not too smart.

alternative services: piracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839222)

things it has going for it: cheaper, worldwide releases, play on any device you want, share with your friends, your viewing habits aren't in same database being masturbated over by marketing departments

negatives: bandwidth intensive, requires a little bit more work to find the stuff you want, teeny weeny chance of getting sued into bankruptcy

Are movies worth it? (3, Insightful)

mallyn (136041) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839224)

I have not been to a first run movie theatre for about 3 1/2 to 4 years; I've lost count.

I find plenty to do without going to first run movies or event renting movies.

To be brutally frank with you, much of what comes out of 'the industry' these days have very little to keep me engaged.

So, I take the money I save by not subscribing to movies and tv and engage in hobbies that keep me engaged and creative, such as these at http://www.allyn.com/ [allyn.com]

Re:Are movies worth it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839314)

Depends where you are I guess. I have a Cineworld Unlimited card so I get as much cinema time as I like for 20 euro a month. Obviously there are some restrictions but it is a good deal.

Re:Are movies worth it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839374)

http://www.theonion.com/articles/area-man-constantly-mentioning-he-doesnt-own-a-tel,429/

Re:Are movies worth it? (3, Informative)

SethJohnson (112166) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839458)

Since you're being frank with me, I'll be frank right back. You are completely out of touch with contemporary cinema. There have been plenty of excellent movies released by 'the industry' and screened in Portland theaters over the past 4 years. You just aren't connected with what is going on in film these days.

Examples:
  • Winnebago Man
  • Tree of Life
  • Exit Through the Gift Shop
  • Inside Job
  • Black Swan
  • True Grit
  • Hangover
  • King's Speech
  • Milk

Seth

Re:Are movies worth it? (2)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839616)

Some are documentaries, not "industry films".

While they are great, GP is correct that the general industry has taken a nosedive in terms of quality. That is how many movies out of how many movies in those same number of years, in which these particular movies actually been well executed? How many movies over the past many years were actually good and not explicit emotional manipulation in a generally shitty movie via music tied to a scene or obvious/long drawn out plot? etc.

I used to go to 10, 20 movies a year, maybe more at the theatres. Once I discovered the pirate bay I realized that about 1-2 movies a year were maybe worth going to the theatres. So don't just blame the movie quality, but also blame the fact that the theatres are treating people like shit. Why should we have any desire to support such an industry?

Re:Are movies worth it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839684)

He's a troll that goes out oh his way to be sure you know he doesn't like TV, and no one should watch it.

He also annoys me because he is the type that thinks like this:
I work on Linux at Intel; therefore I am smart; therefore I am always right.

On the plus side, is light up rain gear is cool.

Re:Are movies worth it? (2)

dxprog (898953) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839568)

You should take up the basics of web design as one of those hobbies...

Re:Are movies worth it? (1)

niklask (1073774) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839576)

This is all perfectly fine, for you. But why do you assume that everyone else is like you or think like you? I myself love watching movies. Not all movies, I do have my preferences. And it doesn't exclude having other hobbies as well.

Cost of mailing DVDs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839230)

A podcast, really? OK, color me guilty, I didn't LTFP.

What kind of reason is "cost of mailing DVDs" for raising rates? What increase was there in the cost of mailing DVDs?

Re:Cost of mailing DVDs (3, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839666)

What increase was there in the cost of mailing DVDs?

The United States Postal Service raises its rates over time due to increases in motor fuel costs and labor costs.

Re:Cost of mailing DVDs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839724)

The physical labour required to actually execute the shipments grew massively. The cost of shipment was static but the labour and other means to make it happen (licensing the discs for commercial use, replacements, customer service, etc. etc. etc.) constitute a cost beyond the postage itself. Who woulda thunk it, increased demand leads to increased cost of the supplier.

I still think... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839252)

it's a great bargain, because if I go to the movies alone for even one flick I'm still saving money what with the cost of the outrageous concessions markup. If I take my wife and kid, it's a second mortgage event. Still a good deal.

Arrrgggg!!! (1)

chrisj_0 (825246) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839318)

nuff said :D

Suck it up people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839334)

I think it is funny the way people complain that Netflix doesn't have their whole catalogue on streaming as though they are making a choice to hold stuff back just to fuck with you.

Netflix in Canada - only ever had streaming (1)

seifried (12921) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839348)

So in Canada we've only ever had streaming for $8 a month. So what's the big deal? "Basic" cable is around $60 a month now. HBO is another $12 a month. etc.

Re:Netflix in Canada - only ever had streaming (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839572)

And you get more with cable and HBO.

Re:Netflix in Canada - only ever had streaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839654)

You may be getting more (or at least more recent stuff), but it's not worth that much anyway. My electric bill is near $80 per month, so screw cable and all those media thieves. Netflix streaming at $8 per month is a decent price for unlimited VOD.

Just some math figures. (1)

TehSpida (1154493) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839350)

Well, this 2 part question deserves a two part answer
If you had a $14.99 plan for 1 out at a time and unlimited internet videos You can on average turn around 1-2 dvds a week for 4-8dvd’s mailed a month And unlimited instant watch to an eh connection of movies/tv shows.
Total: 4-8 + unlimited = $14.99 While redbox which has been Netflix’s number 1 competition for the last 6years. It’s 1 dvd for $1 with a $1 a day late fee, which means you could rent 30 dvd’s for $30 at 1 a day
To beat Netflix you would need to rent less than 14 dvd’s a month, and with the selection of Redbox locations only being updated 4 times a month (at best) you would also need to expand your searching locations, which would bring in paying gas prices. So..
Netflix 4 to 8 + unlimited IW = $14.99 Vs. RedBox 15dvds + (gas for driving @ least avg2-4miles both ways [4-8total, avg. gas price $4 a gallon, 30mpg car]) $.75 = $11.25 + $15 = $26.25 Which means you would actually only get roughly 7dvd’s from Redbox for the same price.

Re:Just some math figures. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839448)

Which means if you're like most people and only renting less than 4 DVDs per month, you're getting screwed by Netflix. I average about 2 DVDs per month. When Netflix raised their rates, I cancelled my DVD option and chose streaming only.

MPAA/RIAA licensing is important (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839376)

With all that money the lawyers and lobbyist need to eat. Please somebody think about the lawyers!

Poor schmuks.

If not MPAA then what? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839714)

On the one hand, one can choose to watch movies distributed by MPAA members. On the other hand, what? Can you think of a substantially cheaper way to produce feature films that are competitive with MPAA output in writing quality, acting quality, and visual quality?

My problem with the changes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839380)

1. They only offer the unlimited DVD plan with streaming. I mostly use streaming and get maybe 1 DVD/month. I wish they offered the streaming + the limited DVD ($5/month) plan. I'm quite happy with streaming content mostly because I don't want mainstream stuff. I with they had more British TV, but otherwise it's great.

2. If you only have a streaming only plan, they won't show you the DVD's they offer or let you have a DVD queue. That stinks because a lot of things jump between being offered via streaming, then just DVD. I used to put stuff in my DVD queue just to save it and eventually it might show up as being offered via streaming. The new method limits the content I'll see in my streaming queue now.

Other than that I get why they did this. Their initial mailings mentioned that they were saving people money by lowering prices. They should have just been honest and said they were raising prices because they had to.

TFA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839388)

Is it just me, or does the article not provide anything resembling an explanation as to why Netflix raised its prices?

Two Words (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839410)

Red Box

There's always a reason to raise rates. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839412)

However, between the cost of mailing DVDs and paying increased licensing fees for content, a Netflix rate hike was inevitable.

Rate hikes are inevitable period. When their market starts to get saturated, they'll raise prices to keep their revenues growing, to appease Wall Street and as a result, justify the CEO's obscene compensation.

Then there are the DVDs. Unless you can get them when they are first issued, you'll get a horribly scratched unplayable disk and have to order a new one. And it's inevitable that it will be on a Saturday night and you won't get the new one until Monday. And even then, I've had to send back the replacement too. WTF do people do with those things? Play hockey with them?!?

And we all know the crazy streaming issues. Shit available one month, gone the next, back again the following .... No Spielberg movies are streamable or Lucas' either. The two billionaire producer/directors are too good for streaming?

I'm trying to get my wife to dump the service. We pretty much watched everything we wanted and there's only so many times you can watch Farscape.And the new releases we'll get Redbox, Amazon or just schlep to the theater. Someone just opened a new one near us. Apparently, they think there's still a market for theaters. Go figure!

Not "why", but "how much" (2)

markdavis (642305) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839426)

I don't really care *why* the price is almost doubling for my plan from what I was paying last year, only that it is. And like TONS of customers, I am going to drop half of the plan. The half I am choosing to drop will be the streaming. In my case, I am not worse off than before. My pricing will be about $1 less per month than when they added streaming in the first place.

Anyway, I can understand why many people are very unhappy about it. I can also understand why it makes sense to separate the plans and have customers pay for what they use (I am not a fan of "bundling" in the first place). However, I see that for many customers, this really is a HUGE and unreasonable price jump.

Yo btw! (1)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839428)

Why don't these same people complain about the federal budget as much as they have with Netflix?

Re:Yo btw! (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839550)

Because the federal budget isn't as bad as the screaming nonsense panic mongers in the news would have you believe.

There are 'News reporters' going after economic experts and calling them wrong. Just because the exerts experience and data driven statement is different then the news persons opinion.

Re:Yo btw! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839558)

Because they are brainwashed douche bags trained by liberals to hate commerce.

Re:Yo btw! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839610)

>> Why don't these same people complain about the federal budget as much as they have with Netflix?

Because the federal budget is boring and provides no entertainment value?

Cost (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839432)

Overall the cost of $25 a month with Netflix is much better than the $120 a month with a cable provider. I'll stick with Netflix and continue to save the money not having cable television.

Blockbuster (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839470)

The timing of the closure of Blockbuster and the rate hike has the cynic in me fired up.

Lets see (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839516)

1) There PR guy was a jackasss and talked down to people.
2) They didn't tells us why.
3) we still don't know what their increased costs where. I think. My cost to mail something didn't go up 60%.

Re: What alternative services are there?" (1)

kmdrtako (1971832) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839520)

Off the top of my head? Hulu Plus. On my Sony TV and blurrydisk player there's Qriocity and three or four others.

I have no idea what the selection is like on Qriocity or the others. I don't really watch that much TV to begin with and I'm just not curious enough about it to (pay money) to find out.

Yes, it's still a great bargain. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839528)

I knew they'd have to do this sooner or later. I'm honestly glad they did in the hopes that this will hopefully provide more content to the streaming customers. Right now, it's like browsing the aisles of old releases of the old, local, small video stores that never had a great selection to begin with.

If this means the possibility of watching new release, block buster movies on streaming is closer to reality, then I'm all for it. If not, well, I'm still for this current price increase. I have no idea how they were making a profit. I'm sure I was using more than $10/month in resources

There are Alternatives, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839544)

Hulu is free on PC but you have to pay to view over mobile

My cable service 'rents' DVDs at 5-6$ which can add up..

And, the selection is not so great, i.e., no tv shows, documentaries, kung fu, anime & cartoons

So, economy of cost depends on your needs and consumption..
Ie, my son's 4 day Power Rangers marathon on watch insantly!

I will be reducing my plan though
-
@ICnObserve

But economy of cost depends on your consumption actually

60%? Try 7% (5, Interesting)

adenied (120700) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839546)

It's misleading to say that they raised their rates by 60%. They did I suppose if you only have the unlimited 1 DVD plan + streaming. Going by the outcry I suppose there's a lot of people who have it. However, my family has the 4 DVDs + streaming plan and the price will be going from $27.99 to $29.98 a month. That's less than a small latte from Starbucks.

Instead of screaming at Netflix and throwing tantrums comparing the price increases to rape (google it, it's really sad) I wish these people would start screaming at the media companies to get some sort of reasonable pricing and access to streaming media. This whole sending me physical pieces of plastic through the mail is getting old! It's 2011 for crying out loud! Not only is there a terribly small amount of things I can stream through Netflix, but things disappear, almost always with little warning. My streaming queue has over 200 titles that are in the saved section because they were available once but are now not.

I understand what's going on behind the scenes, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

Re:60%? Try 7% (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839648)

It might be 2011 on the calendar but if you look at the network hardware that carries the data traffic it's still 1990.

Re:60%? Try 7% (1)

sunfly (1248694) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839760)

There are far more people with 1 DVD + unlimited than your plan of 4 DVD's. Although still a good deal. We dropped Netflix because they broke the interface, and we could no navigate it in a manner that allowed us to find a movie to watch.

Cheaper now for some (1)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839570)

I have relatives who will never use the streaming (they are still getting used to DVDs). For them, it is now cheaper. I am moving strictly to streaming, but the selection is thinner than their DVD collection. So, I will take a hit. Since I dropped cable in favor of Netflix and free OTA HDTV (50+ channels), I am still ahead.

I see a trend. (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839604)

How many of these 'Why Netflix raised their rates' articles will Netflix PR department spawn?

amazon instant video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839634)

More expensive in the long run, but the selection is much better in my opinion - If I can't find it on netflix, I'll head over to amazon. I'll pay the little bit of extra money for the convenience.

#1 Alternative REDBOX (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839640)

The newest alternative to movies-at-home out here in CA is REDBOX. Coke machine meets DVD with a $1/da cost to rent its the bomb. Search the kiosk for what's available (always something) select, swipe and done. Its that simple. Return the next day and you've just watched a popular movie for a buck. Beat BlockBuster which just closed its last store in San Diego by price, timeliness and fashion. Inventory was fresher, customer service quicker and more hassle-free.

There is no downside, no risk, no negatives...it just works, works everytime, works when you get it home and works when you return it. This is the last iteration before online movie rental squares their offering to better this one.

Content of article? (2)

Lando (9348) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839642)

So the blurb here was all the information that was actually published in that article. Does a brief comment that adds no information actually need to be posted as a story? I thought they were going to put out some numbers. The article headline seems to be misleading in that there doesn't seem to be any actual content, unless I'm missing something.

How much does cable and on demand cost a month (1)

jweller13 (1148823) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839678)

How much does adding the movie channels to your cable package cost per month; how much does OnDemand cost per movie?

Netflix wasn't more than that? (1)

johansch (9784) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839680)

I'm a European. I recently tried netflix using a multi-hosted VPN supplier. After all the hype I had been reading online I was sorely disappointed. It was very hard to find a movie that I would like to watch (again).

And then there was the technical execution. Silverlight? For real?

And not just silverlight.. it needs to load hundreds of thumbnails before it wants to start playing to stream, so that seeking can be done in a more pleasing way. Nice thought, except loading those damn thumbnailds takes several minutes...

I give this service a grade 2 out of 5. Meanwhile, you americans should check out Spotify, since it actually delivers...

Poor Posting (3, Interesting)

guttentag (313541) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839692)

The "Netflix rate hike was inevitable" link goes to a paragraph of text that really doesn't say anything more about the subject than what's posted in the summary. I suppose there's a link there to an audio monologue on the subject, but who wants to spend 30-60 minutes listening to the audio just to see if they have anything more to say there?

So at this point all we have is a vague argument that Netflix had to raise its prices because of the cost of mailing DVDs and increased licensing fees for streaming content. Let's dissect this:

Sending DVDs through the mail is what Netflix has always done. It is the core of its business. I haven't seen any news about a sudden hike in the cost of mail in the U.S. Yes, it's gone up over the last 20 years, but not since Netflix's last price increase about 7 months ago. Netflix is the postal service's life support. Without Netflix, the USPS isn't financially viable because so much written communication now takes place online, so the USPS is going to do whatever it takes to ensure Netflix doesn't send fewer DVDs through the mail. I consider this part of the argument debunked -- the cost of mailing DVDs did not force this price increase.

Netflix has progressively tried to steer customers away from the mail service, presumably because they don't have to maintain distribution centers around the country to stream videos, and they're worried someone else will beat them to the on-demand streaming party first. They want to own that party before the space gets crowded, and the easiest way for them to do that is to "convert" their huge base of snail mail customers to streaming. They started out by bundling it for free with your subscription, then offering it by itself, then disabling the ability to manage your DVD queue through the Netflix mobile apps...

The problem is that their streaming library is a fraction of the size of their DVD library. To fill in the gaps, they have to go back to the content owners and negotiate fees, and the content owners smell an opportunity to make a lot of money. Rather than use its size to convince the content owners that receiving a reasonable licensing fee for the content is better than receiving nothing at all and being left out, Netflix has decided it wants the content even if it has to overpay for it... Because it will just pass on the cost of its decision to the users. I'm sure someone at some high level meeting said, "wait, what if our customers realize this and flee?" and that's why they're providing the option to opt out of streaming altogether now. The customers who don't want to pay the increase can just opt out of streaming. The customers who are willing to pay the price for streaming will pad the pockets of the content owners.

Best value (1)

gellenburg (61212) | more than 3 years ago | (#36839706)

I would seriously pay twice what I'm paying Netflix for now for unlimited streaming and if it helped provide a better selection.

Seriously.

Netflix is by far the best value on the Internet today.

That and they treat their employees with respect. Especially their customer service folks.

My Hulu Plus subscription isn't giving me shit.

No geek PAYS to watch movies ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839708)

All you people who actually pay to watch movies, turn in your geek cards
on your way out.

And don't come back.

10x (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36839726)

I keep reading stories where they claim are wanting to adjust the 200m Netflix spent in 2010 closer to 2b (yes, with a b), or almost 10x. Anyone know where these estimates are originating?

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