Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

800,000 Subscribers Can Be Wrong

The latest news from the financial and entertainment world is the DVD shipper NetFlix is on the rocks.  Since they announced the division between their shipping and livestream services, over 800,000 subscribers have dropped the service.  According to Fox News, experts are raising questions about Netflix’s long-term viability and the the soundness of its business model

We should be questioning the people who are dropping NetFlix.  Do they have rocks in their heads?  While depending on a completely electronic service – of DVDs or anything else – is unwise, in this case, switching over to their live streaming service is the smarter thing to do.  Now, NetFlix does need to update the movies on its livestream if it expects to retrieve those 800,000 subscribers.  Watching older movies and documentaries doesn’t bother some of us, but those 800,000 want to see current films, or as current as you can get without going to the theater.

Otherwise, why in the world would you want to go to all the trouble of ordering and mailing back a DVD – and most of the 800,000 subscribers would tell you the reason they order the DVD is because they really only want to see the movie once – when all you have to do is call up the movie on your television with a click of your remote? 

Meanwhile, these same people are paying $50 a month and more for mostly garbage on cable television.  Many of them – those who have the big bucks – also subscribe to premium channels like HBO.  Are they out of their minds?  Do the Conservative HBO subscribers know they’re contributing to Obama’s campaign?!

Send back the cable box and trade it in for one of the many wireless devices that are now on the market.  They’re a one-time purchase and amazingly easy to use.  After a year or two, you’ll have made up the price you pay for renting the cable box.  If you have an x-box, you don’t even need to buy one.  The x-box is wireless and you can use its code to subscribe to whatever you want:  Netflix, Hulu, Amazon.  You’ll still be tied to cable for the basic news channels.  Eventually, the technology is going to catch up to the wireless boxes and you’ll be able to livestream the network news.  Maybe even Fox News someday.  Presently, you can see Fox from 9 to 3 during the day.

No one needs to throw away their DVD/Blu Ray player just yet, either.  With more people going for Blu-Ray or going to the livestream route, DVDs are becoming quite inexpensive.  Buy the movies you would watch more than once and livestream the rest.  Do you people have something against saving money?  Do you enjoy squandering your life’s savings on channels you never watch, making millionaires out of socialist con-artists who produce, write, and act in what passes for entertainment on television.  If you’re really that attached to Dancing with the Stars, you can still keep your basic cable for about $12 per month.

If you’d hooked up sooner and not been so stubborn, you could be watching Glenn Beck for $5 a month.  Now it's $10, although some days, he even offers his programming for free, as a trial.  Would you really rather be watching whoever that buffoon is that Fox has on at 5 p.m. now?  Glenn Beck and his news organization, The Blaze, are the only ones telling the real story on television.

Some interesting things would happen if you sent back the box and did some austerity viewing.  You’d find yourself watching less television, but enjoying what you see more.  You’d find you have a life.   You’d find you have a spouse and kids.  You’d read more.  You’d more to your kids.  You’d help them with their homework and find out what those communist teachers of theirs are indoctrinating them with.  You might just decide to do something about and go to a school board meeting.  Not exactly high drama; if you parents bothered to show up, it might just turn into high drama.

I’ve been without cable for a couple of months now.  Except for Fox News, I hardly miss it – and the only time I watch Fox is at 6 p.m.   Between my own considerable DVD collection and NetFlix, I hardly miss cable.  I still get the local news on basic, which is enough, and whatever else I want to know, I can find out on my computer or my tablet – and much faster.

Wake up, you silly, couch potato Luddites.  Livestream is the new cable; it delivers successfully what cable failed to deliver – what you want to see, when you want to see it, at a reasonable price.  NetFlix not only deserves to survive, but we need it – and the other livestream services – to survive.  It’s time to break the cable habit and cable television’s financial and cultural stranglehold over us.


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