Topic: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Found this on slashdot.org:

Derek Thompson, writing in the Atlantic last month, highlighted the ways in which contemporary millennial lifestyles are in many ways subsidized by venture capital. Unprofitable businesses are currently offering up great deals to urbanites who otherwise would be unable to afford their fancy city-living in large part because of losses incurred as the cost of buying up market share. "If you wake up on a Casper mattress, work out with a Peloton before breakfast, Uber to your desk at a WeWork, order DoorDash for lunch, take a Lyft home, and get dinner through Postmates, you've interacted with seven companies that will collectively lose nearly $14 billion this year," Thompson wrote of the "Millennial Lifestyle Sponsorship." He doesn't mention it, but there's another key player in the MLS field: Netflix. As Richard Rushfield has noted in his excellent newsletter on Hollywood business, The Ankler, Netflix is in a tricky position. The vast majority of Netflix's viewers (upwards of 80 percent, according to him) watch licensed content ("Friends" and the like) and in order to create a library of programming audiences will pay for, they've gone massively in debt: "Netflix is currently in the hole for about $20 billion in debt and obligations and still operating at a loss."

Those benefiting from the "Netflix and Chill" branch of the Millennial Lifestyle Subsidy tree don't care. And it's all well and good for a Silicon Valley unicorn, one of those rare tech beasts whose valuations do not match profit-loss statements because there's no real competition yet and everyone believes first-mover status is an insurmountable advantage. But with the rapid rise of vicious streaming competition -- the ascendancy of Hulu and niche programmers such as Criterion; the creation of streaming services by Disney, Warner Brothers and Apple, to name a (very) few -- Netflix's advantage seems to be fading. One can already sense a sort of nostalgia for the golden age of bingeing while reading the Hollywood Reporter's roundtable with seven studio heads. "Doesn't it bum you out that you can't make 'The Irishman?'" asked THR's Matthew Belloni. And while one might expect studio heads to go the diplomatic route and say no -- everyone in Hollywood believes in their own product, after all, and there are no regrets ahead of time -- you believe the execs when they answer in the negative. "You know, it actually doesn't. It would bum me out if no one made the movie," Universal's Donna Langley said. "It's never been a better time for filmmakers and storytelling and for things to find their way into the world that were getting squeezed over the last five or six years or even longer."

I like that last sentence. smile The 'streaming wars' will be interesting, so much money is being thrown around!

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

It would be better for universe if everything were available under one service with a reasonable price.

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

When Netflix spread, piracy went down. Now that everything is spread to many different services piracy has again risen.

I stopped buying Blu-Rays because I have streaming services. I might loose some services but I won't go back to buying physical copies, and will not buy digital copies of movies or tv shows. Mostly because I wan't to hold what I own. (Games excluded). I also buy my books physically.

...where did I put that rat's ass I could give?

Daemons are benevolent or benign nature spirits, beings of the same nature as both mortals and gods, similar to ghosts, chthonic heroes, spirit guides, forces of nature or the gods themselves.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Daemonius wrote:

It would be better for universe if everything were available under one service with a reasonable price.

This.

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Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

This is far too much to pay for something you never own, and may loose access to at anytime.

DRM "manages access" in the same way that Prison "manages freedom".
http://xkcd.com/488/

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Daemonius wrote:

I stopped buying Blu-Rays because I have streaming services. I might loose some services but I won't go back to buying physical copies, and will not buy digital copies of movies or tv shows. Mostly because I wan't to hold what I own. (Games excluded). I also buy my books physically.

I see... I used to love having physical copies, now I don't care much.

scorpius074 wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

It would be better for universe if everything were available under one service with a reasonable price.

This.

Yes, I also totally like the idea of that, the question just is: is it possible to combine that with the forces of capitalism/competition that bring down prices and/or improve quality over time?

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Wizard wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

This is far too much to pay for something you never own, and may loose access to at anytime.

People pay a lot of money for other experiences too (vacation, wedding party, ...), the value isn't always in owning something. smile

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

lighton wrote:
Wizard wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

This is far too much to pay for something you never own, and may loose access to at anytime.

People pay a lot of money for other experiences too (vacation, wedding party, ...), the value isn't always in owning something. smile

I watch Netflix at work during breaks, can't have my DVD's with me so it's easier to use a phone for that. Also there is Star Trek in all it's iterations. ~16€/mo. for this isn't that bad.

Viaplay has Blacklist, Magnum P.I. and Will & Grace (at the moment) with a day after original airing so ~10€/mo. for 12 episodes isn't that bad.

HBO Nordic has Mayans M.C., Batwoman, Supergirl, that John Oliver Show, Watchmen, Silicon Valley. 10€/mo. not bad.

CMore I use mostly for F1 and Hockey World Championships, occasional movies and tv shows also. ~21€/mo.

Then there's one local channel that has a streaming sub that also has new movies and tv shows but that's mostly for the missus. ~10€/mo.

I could let them all go, save that money and go to the dark side but I feel that if I can pay for my entertainment then I'll do that.

...where did I put that rat's ass I could give?

Daemons are benevolent or benign nature spirits, beings of the same nature as both mortals and gods, similar to ghosts, chthonic heroes, spirit guides, forces of nature or the gods themselves.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

lighton wrote:
scorpius074 wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

It would be better for universe if everything were available under one service with a reasonable price.

This.

Yes, I also totally like the idea of that, the question just is: is it possible to combine that with the forces of capitalism/competition that bring down prices and/or improve quality over time?

In short, no! It would be nice to have everything under the sun (under one sun), but it's a pipe dream. At some point, you're going to be paying out the wazoo for average streaming and internet service. The streaming service landscape is growing. The industry, once dominated by a few companies, is now more than a dozen strong, and more players keep entering the game. In the past, these entertainment giants licensed their content to services like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu. However, those days are behind us, and, other than the consumer, Netflix will pay heavily for it. At what point do existing Netflix customers start weighing in the price hikes versus the amount of "quality" content that's been taken away? Keep in mind that their new original content isn't exactly winning any awards amongst consumers either. "Netflix is currently in the hole for about $20 billion in debt and obligations and still operating at a loss" -- Another price hike is undoubtedly coming soon and will continue for the foreseeable future.

These other entertainment moguls know that and smell blood in the water. They want a piece of the pie too. The problem, of course, is that everyone wants a larger piece with whipped cream on top. It's the reason why we're in this current situation, and it's likely to get even worse in the coming years. By worse (at least as far as the consumer is concerned), that's going to mean even more fragmented and even more expensive. Otherwise, people are going to start looking for alternative ways to satisfy their content consumption habits, if they haven't already.

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9 (edited by inkblot 2019-11-07 01:42:06)

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

You are forgetting one market that is gaining ground. The illegal android box streaming market. I have several friends that pay $20 per month and they have over 20k in PPV movies available along with over 2000+ Channels. Live, Sports custom etc. All for a lousy $20.

Highly illegal, but the boxes are selling like McDonald's breakfasts. A lot of people I know are cutting the Legal Streaming like Netflix and other services because of lack of contend, along with their local  Satellite and Cable. Why pay $80 per month in various services when you can get everything you want for $20?

Remember FTA boxes? They killed the illegal Satellite market. Android boxes are slowly eroding the streaming and cable market.

Also, there is the pirate angle. Why watch a show on cable if you can download it without commercials and watch it. delete when done. No large storage space required and you save 15+ minutes per 1 hour episode. And most times I can find stuff out on pirate sites way before netflix, crave or any other service has them. Hell the android box has em way before they do anyway.

The TV landscape is changing. People want it now and fast. And they will go with whoever offers them what they need. And in today's society and with the ease of the internet, you no longer have to be a hacker sitting in your moms dark basement. Or sitting on IRC etc.

You can even download plugins for Kodi that will link to torrents or other servers. All you need is a remote or your mouse. The days of waiting for something to be on and adjusting your schedule to fit what you watch is over.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

inkblot wrote:

The illegal android box streaming market. I have several friends that pay $20 per month and they have over 20k in PPV movies available along with over 2000+ Channels.

That's... a LOT! yikes I wonder what the infrastructure behind that is. A datacenter in a country that doesn't care?

inkblot wrote:

Live, Sports custom etc. All for a lousy $20.

Highly illegal, but the boxes are selling like McDonald's breakfasts.

Wow, didn't know that got so big. Just read about some resellers ending up in court.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

scorpius074 wrote:

The industry, once dominated by a few companies, is now more than a dozen strong

There are dozens if not hundreds of small streaming services that tried to get into that game when it got popular but have already died from quite simply bringing nothing new to the table. This is nothing new.

Right now we have a lot of existing companies trying to stake their claim in this market; they have some better financial backing and, in cases of television networks, some stuff people might actually want to see, but I'd dare to predict that many of those also won't live long.

At this point, the only ones I can see that seriously matter are Netflix, as it still has the reputation from being the first, Prime Video for being bundled with Prime, the premium service of Amazon, and Disney+, having content from throughout almost a century, not to mention that from various major acquisitions, at their disposal.

For everyone else, it is just a race to at least have some good original shows, but running another complete streaming service on that should be difficult and might turn out not viable in the long run.
Basically:

in order to create a library of programming audiences will pay for, they've gone massively in debt

As said, Disney has a pretty much unfair advantage here. One essentially no other company currently has or would have: a big library of popular content they already own.


lighton wrote:

Yes, I also totally like the idea of that, the question just is: is it possible to combine that with the forces of capitalism/competition that bring down prices and/or improve quality over time?

I think that part of the problem is that the licensing system that is still being used is just terribly outdated.

Back in the day, studios pumped out as much content as they could; first use it to keep your viewers interested enough so they do not move to the competition, then later make even more by renting out licenses to show it to other companies so they can have more filler material.
Since the only decent way to watch anything was through these companies and they were all big and therefore few enough to sue for copyright infringement, that worked nicely.


Right now, the dominant strategy is to both hold onto giant libraries all at once, which is terribly expensive, and to have exclusives, meaning no competitor is going to have it in their library anytime soon.
In effect, the same approach is being pursued, but with bigger expenses and (presumably) less income from being able to rent out, as time slots are no longer a thing.

At the same time, this is all done under the old assumption that copyright laws will prevent people from finding viable alternative ways to watch - which in times of the internet is also quite simply no longer true.


A capitalistic approach that could very well serve everyone in the long run would be to give up on the content-hogging approach. Release your own originals, but also make them available to any other service to use within a day or two, claiming royalties for everyone that watches them there.

That way any one service's viewership would no longer just consist of those that can afford every service and those that happened to choose it over others, but of everyone with access to at least one.


Doing away with the current system would also help with the country-specific licensing. Right now, living outside the US, it can often take forever until some streaming service or TV channel gets the rights for a show, and that is not mentioning those that never become available at all, making piracy literally the only way to watch something, short of ordering a hardcopy abroad, waiting for shipping and maybe even dealing with country locks.



For now, we are gonna have to deal with everyone trying to outgun each other. I just hope that Disney will not succeed in doing just that, as that would mean there is no more pressure on the market to actually change.



lighton wrote:

I used to love having physical copies, now I don't care much.

I even actively avoid it. I only read most things once and having to actually put books somewhere can be kind of annoying unless you want to use them to decorate a room.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

Did some math. It's like to buy a 65" UHD TV, watch it for a few weeks and throw it in the trash. Repeat every year.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

g371 wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

Did some math. It's like to buy a 65" UHD TV, watch it for a few weeks and throw it in the trash. Repeat every year.

Maybe you didn't read this:

Daemonius wrote:

I could let them all go, save that money and go to the dark side but I feel that if I can pay for my entertainment then I'll do that.

Some people spend their spare money on drugs, others on gambling, others go shopping - and others on entertainment. Nothing wrong here... personal choice! smile

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

lighton wrote:
g371 wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

At the moment I have 5 services that I pay for, total of 66,83€ / month.

Did some math. It's like to buy a 65" UHD TV, watch it for a few weeks and throw it in the trash. Repeat every year.

Maybe you didn't read this:

Daemonius wrote:

I could let them all go, save that money and go to the dark side but I feel that if I can pay for my entertainment then I'll do that.

Some people spend their spare money on drugs, others on gambling, others go shopping - and others on entertainment. Nothing wrong here... personal choice! smile

After that I decided to let got of the ~21€ one because there's nothing interesting going on in the world of motorsports anymore and the next Hockey World Championship games are a half a year away.

...where did I put that rat's ass I could give?

Daemons are benevolent or benign nature spirits, beings of the same nature as both mortals and gods, similar to ghosts, chthonic heroes, spirit guides, forces of nature or the gods themselves.

15 (edited by g371 2019-11-08 18:22:24)

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Yeah, I read that. I also could easily afford that, but I don't do it. And that allows me to get other expensive toys that I get to keep. Tho, somebody has to, so I could continue not to big_smile I justify it as tax to Americans for me turning a blind eye or supporting the spreading of their democracy smile

But seriously the main issue with these multiple service providers is that you have to pay full price, but use the fraction of their product. And that's why I think that Netflix is rather safe, despite the losses. Unless somebody will perform some checkmate move and Netflix won't be able to get the essential shows and movies. The one that provides the most diverse offer will be ok. If they all will pull the blanket to their corner, they all will lose, because the most diverse/easy to use will be piracy again. The only reason it went down, because Netflix had the most stuff everybody wants for a reasonable price (at least when I used it for a while).

How I calculate the "real value" of cost for some service. I take the monthly cost, let's say "just" 6.69 eur, multiply it by 12. So it's 80.28 eur per year. Then I convert it to fuel. 88.28 / 1.2 = 66.9 litres of fuel. Or 7.3 fuel tanks of my motorcycle. And now I know how much happiness I'm giving away for that service that most likely I don't really need big_smile

That being said, I still pay for excellent software and in a few cases would pay 5x more if they would ask for it.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

I'd say that if a subscription costs 10 units of currency per month and a movie rental is 5 units. If you watch 2 movies / month from said service you get what you pay for and all other is just extra for you.

...where did I put that rat's ass I could give?

Daemons are benevolent or benign nature spirits, beings of the same nature as both mortals and gods, similar to ghosts, chthonic heroes, spirit guides, forces of nature or the gods themselves.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Daemonius wrote:

I'd say that if a subscription costs 10 units of currency per month and a movie rental is 5 units. If you watch 2 movies / month from said service you get what you pay for and all other is just extra for you.

There are cultural differences, you still use rental or whatever, we have dirt cheap high speed unmonitored internet.

18 (edited by h3ctic 2019-11-08 20:23:46)

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Does anyone donwload mp3's still or do most use the "reasonably priced" Spotify that has a HUGE collection?

(I personally must admit I used to download TONS of mp3's back in the day...When I felt Spotify had a reasonable price and "music enough" for me I deleted every single mp3 I had, started a Spotify-subscription which I've paid ever since.)

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

g371 wrote:
Daemonius wrote:

I'd say that if a subscription costs 10 units of currency per month and a movie rental is 5 units. If you watch 2 movies / month from said service you get what you pay for and all other is just extra for you.

There are cultural differences, you still use rental or whatever, we have dirt cheap high speed unmonitored internet.

Of course there are, and I can only speak for my self. I hardly never rent movies, I can wait for them to come to Netflix or similar. The same reason is why I don't go to a movie theater. Also, 30€/mo for 1 gigabit speed is cheap. And there is no datacap.

h3ctic wrote:

Does anyone donwload mp3's still or do most use the "reasonably priced" Spotify that has a HUGE collection?

(I personally must admit I used to download TONS of mp3's back in the day...When I felt Spotify had a reasonable price and "music enough" for me I deleted every single mp3 I had, started a Spotify-subscription which I've paid ever since.)

I have a lot of bought CD's, mostly from the bands that I like. Those are on my phone as MP3's. But mostly I listen to podcasts and sometimes audiobooks.

...where did I put that rat's ass I could give?

Daemons are benevolent or benign nature spirits, beings of the same nature as both mortals and gods, similar to ghosts, chthonic heroes, spirit guides, forces of nature or the gods themselves.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

h3ctic wrote:

Does anyone donwload mp3's still or do most use the "reasonably priced" Spotify that has a HUGE collection?

I still have massive collection of MP3 (~50,000 tracks (250gb)) and use them all the time.  I don't like online services and will never use them.  My collection mostly came from physical CDs I owned and were ripped by me.

They are mostly streamed to my Sonos system (non-internet connected) and on my phone for listening at work or out and about where internet access is limited

DRM "manages access" in the same way that Prison "manages freedom".
http://xkcd.com/488/

21 (edited by g371 2019-11-09 12:22:46)

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

h3ctic wrote:

Does anyone donwload mp3's still or do most use the "reasonably priced" Spotify that has a HUGE collection?

(I personally must admit I used to download TONS of mp3's back in the day...When I felt Spotify had a reasonable price and "music enough" for me I deleted every single mp3 I had, started a Spotify-subscription which I've paid ever since.)

Why not both? big_smile The strength of Spotify is their playlists and suggestions, which saves a ton of time searching for what you might like. And if you listen to Spotify in the background, then that service you actually are using a lot. The downside is that it's streaming, if you don't live your life 100% under wifi or perfect cell service coverage. Sure, you can ask to cache, but it's not foolproof. MP3 is.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

The point I was trying to make smile was that the downloading of movies and tv-shows would grind to a halt if we could subscribe to "Moviefy"...some sort of a "reasonably priced" service that has a HUGE collection of "enough" movies/tv-series IN ONE PLACE.

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

h3ctic wrote:

The point I was trying to make smile was that the downloading of movies and tv-shows would grind to a halt if we could subscribe to "Moviefy"...some sort of a "reasonably priced" service that has a HUGE collection of "enough" movies/tv-series IN ONE PLACE.

This.

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Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

scorpius074 wrote:
h3ctic wrote:

The point I was trying to make smile was that the downloading of movies and tv-shows would grind to a halt if we could subscribe to "Moviefy"...some sort of a "reasonably priced" service that has a HUGE collection of "enough" movies/tv-series IN ONE PLACE.

This.

Thanks scorpius074, that adds another level to my question "is it possible to combine that with the forces of capitalism/competition that bring down prices and/or improve quality over time?" from above. smile

Re: Enjoy Netflix While It Lasts. It Can't Keep Going Like This Forever.

Thanks for that link Scorpius. I guess a "Moviefy" with some series included in the subscription fee (I never said 10$ was my limit) and the rest at a unit price would be acceptable - and this would be the way for them to ensure their revenues. As it is now however it will never be something I would be willing to pay for having all these different companies having their own system. I rather download what I need/want and buy what I *really* like.