Is It Time to Dump Netflix?


I love me some Netflix.  Well, at least I used to.  But lately I’ve been thinking it might be time to cancel my subscription.  Here’s why.

First and foremost, there’s nothing I want to watch.  I have had the same three DVDs sitting on a shelf in my office for months: The Hangover (I think I’d like it, if I ever get around to watching it), Yellowstone: Battle for Life (I have no idea what I was thinking), and The Hills Run Red (I don’t even recognize that name, but I generally like B-movie horror films).  I’d either watch these or send them back for something better, if I could find something better.  And there lies the issue.

It has been literally months since I have seen anything on the Netflix new releases list that I really want to watch.

Here’s the list of new releases for this week.














For one, there’s the consumer-be-damned 28 day delay for new releases.  I’m not going to buy a DVD to watch it once, and I’m sure as hell not going to drive to a brick and mortar video store (do people even do that anymore?).  So all this does is irritate me, and hurt Netflix.  Because the result is that I spend a lot more time browsing iTunes looking for something I can watch, you know, immediately.

It’s crazy that what used to seem so fast (2-day shipping) now seems so incredibly slow.  Anything I’m really excited about gets watched via iTunes, before I would otherwise get it via Netflix.

At this point, only inertia and the low monthly cost is keeping me from abandoning ship.

Clearly, the future of movie rentals is online, via downloads and streaming.  Now that Blockbuster is giving Toni Braxton and Hollywood Video a run for their money in the bankruptcy filer department, maybe Netflix will hang on long enough to become the other primary source of online video (behind Apple, of course).  Progress is clearly being made, but there is much work to be done.

Netflix better hurry, because new release lists like this won’t keep me around for long.

10 thoughts on “Is It Time to Dump Netflix?

  1. I have been a Netflix member since 1999, the year they were born. While I agree with you that their new release choices are pretty weak, instead of dropping them completely I think you should change your membership plan and get one DVD delivered via mail and watch as many as you’d like on line. I really enjoy the choice selection of foreign films and documentaries that Netflix offers for instant viewing, plus there are some select classics offered too.

    I believe Netflix is going to be around a long time, continuing to evolve with technology. Blockbuster’s bricks and mortar stores are closing daily and while they are restructuring in bankruptcy court they are in a silly chase with Red Box and have actually set up Blue Boxes to offer a variety of films.

    Netflix wins…hands down.

  2. I think I probably will change my subscription over time towards online methods. My current problem is that I have watched most of the available stuff (I love documentaries and am so-so on foreign film). So I am largely dependent on new stuff. I am hoping the roll out of Netflix enabled devices (Sony TVs, the new Apple TV, etc.) will result in more online stuff faster.You’re right about Red Box. Based on the habits of my wife and kids, I think it has the local DVD market pretty much cornered.

  3. A word of advice if you do choose to abandon Netflix. Clear your queue, send in your DVDs, wait for confirmation, then cancel. It could be a coincidence that they somehow stopped receiving my DVDs in the 10-day grace period after I canceled my account, but they wrangled me for $160 with lost DVDs.

  4. I’m about to ditch mine as well. There just isn’t enough that I can’t find elsewhere and I actually do go to a brick and mortar store. In my case, it’s Movies: The Store, which is a GREAT local movie place on Richmond about halfway between where I’m moving and my gf currently lives. When we do want to rent something, we can get it AND we can support some cool people locally who love movies. Win win.

  5. Weird, my family has a backlog of hundreds of disks waiting for us. There are the odd “new” movie that we missed seeing during its release window (theater and dvd), but mostly it’s decades old movies (the ‘must see’ classics that we’re too young to have seen in theaters and aren’t carried by the [now defunct] local video store).
    Oh, and TV series that aren’t available Instantly or via Hulu, et al.

  6. I agree that much of the beauty of Netflix is old movies, which are my favorite anyway. I wish they had a bigger selection of 40’s film noir, but I have found a lot of good, old stuff at Netflix.

  7. If that store was close to my house, I’d try to shop there. I definitely prefer local businesses. I shopped at Cactus for years, until I started getting all my music via download. I suspect the same trend is going to eventually kill all video stores, big or little.

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