Sunday, August 2, 2015

What To Do About Netflix?

Since well before starting this blog, I've been a great supporter of Netflix Instant. As I originally wrote in my About page, the streaming service is probably the best entertainment value for your dollar there is. Even when its new prices kick in over the next couple years, it'll still be a great deal.

But in recent months the company seems to be trying its best to alienate all but the most indifferent of customers. Continuing its trend of deemphasizing classic content for new and original programming, it not only axed over a thousand titles last month, but added insult to injury by giving little or no warning beforehand. It's now considering dropping expiration notices altogether. Given that the original purpose of this blog was to highlight more obscure and classic titles while providing a heads-up on when those (and other) titles were leaving, this effectively constitutes a double whammy.

New isn't always better

Then there was the recent website redesign, which was lauded as adding a fresh new look that makes it easier to view basic info for each title without leaving the main screen. Except, for those of us who want more than basic info, we now have to click through three partial screens instead of finding everything (overview, details, comments) on one. We're also now missing any on-screen expiration dates as well as the ability to copy and paste a title for further researching on the web.

Meanwhile, the interface for streaming players (in my case, the Roku Stick) gets more problematic with each new update. Originally you were able to see at a glance the number of items in a row and where you stood within it—an important point of reference when scrolling forward or back, especially in your queue. You could also see the total number of episodes in a TV show's season, which made for a handy indicator before committing to a new series; and once you selected a show, you could see immediately how long the upcoming episode was—great to know when starting a double-length pilot or special extended episode. But now, finding an episode's length takes an extra click, while there's no way at all to see the total episode count without scrolling through each season and adding them up yourself.

The perils of post-play

But that's not the worst part. My own particular bĂȘte noire has been that heinous "feature" known as post-play. You may be familiar with it: As a movie or TV show's end credits roll, the image suddenly shrinks and is thrust to the top left of your screen—"conveniently" giving you further options to stream. For those of us who would like to read the credits ("Who was that guest star?" "What was that song?") or who simply enjoy staring at the screen and absorbing what we just watched, the only way to get the credits back is to reach frantically for the remote and click the Up arrow two or three times (it's different each time) and reselect the playing screen.

This is not only a royal pain in the butt, it's extremely disruptive to the viewing experience—yanking you out of the mood with a tiny burst of adrenaline (and, in my case, anger). Worse, I've become so used to grabbing the remote in preparation for the dreaded end-credits-shrinkage, I now get the same Pavlovian urge while in a movie theater. So, thanks, Netflix, for ruining my theater experience, too.

And now there's an even newer wrinkle in the deteriorating streaming experience, one that's been rolling out to set-top players in the last two weeks. This particular brand of (cough) improvement involves starting a show or movie immediately upon selecting it—as opposed to letting you see the info screen first and possibly scrolling through other options. At the very least you might want to see the cast or director. But, no. "You don't need to see all that junk," sayeth Netflix. "Let us just go ahead and start the movie for you, so you don't need to worry about pushing an extra button, you poor immobile little blob!"

Which is ironic considering all the extra button-pushes we're forced to tolerate when the movie ends and we want to watch the credits. Doubly ironic: there was already a single-button play feature available (at least on the Roku)—the Play/Pause button. All you have to do is scroll to your title, hit that button, and voila!, the movie starts right up. No all-knowing overlords required.

Why can't "choice" be a feature?

The most frustrating aspect to all this is not that these features have been introduced, but that they've been forced on us with no way to deactivate them. It was a godsend a few years back when Netflix granted us the ability to turn off autoplay (that's when one TV episode ends and the next starts a 10-second countdown). I turned mine off immediately. But despite repeated requests by myself and others, the company refuses to give us the option to turn off post-play—and I see no way to neutralize the new "pre-play" function, either.

Instead we're forcibly rushed into starting a program, then rushed into ending it afterwards. There's no allowance for individual viewer preference. Why the big rush, Netflix? You had us at "Subscribe," after all. Are you afraid we won't watch anything else if you don't force it down our throats? Or that we're too stupid or lazy to make decisions for ourselves before or after watching something?

On top of how annoying and frustrating this is, it's also damn insulting. And it's discouraging me from watching things on Netflix, to the point where I'm spending more time in the less controlling environs of Amazon Prime and even (horrors) the ad-ridden world of Hulu. For all its sins, at least Hulu lets you start and stop its programs unmolested.

Yes, there's still a lot of great content on Netflix I want to see, even if increasingly less of it is the classic films and series I like to promote. But the more the company forces me to watch its content the way they want me to, the more I'm going to resist it and seek out alternatives. (My DVD collection grows more appealing by the day.)

Whither WoNN?

I'm also, frankly, feeling much less inspired to continue this blog. I've already talked about no longer wanting to spend my time managing the (mostly unmanageable) lists of new and expiring titles. But now I'm considering letting this whole enterprise rest for a while—at least until I see some improvement in Netflix's user interface or feel inspired to recommend something too good to ignore. The service is getting further and further from the one I set out to champion, and with its emphasis on original content—and its all-pervasive marketing machine—the company doesn't need me to trumpet whatever non-original titles are left.

I realize a lot of you have come to depend on this site for up-to-date info, but I truly believe there are better sites for providing that kind of raw data (Instantwatcher and New On Netflix USA among them). For me, it's always been about curating, not comprehensive listing, so if anything I'd like to return to that model and scale things back to a more personalized approach—assuming I can get the current bad taste out of my mouth.

What do you all think? Has watching Netflix become as frustrating for you as it has for me? Am I overreacting? Feel free to sound off in the comments below. Meanwhile, expect a slightly different look to this blog in the coming days...


Anonymous said...

Bravo. Excellent post.

You nailed my pet peeves with Netflix.

The new website interface is *awful* -- just a cluttered mess that looks like it was designed to hide information.

My biggest problem is the diminishing number of older movies and television shows. I don't subscribe to Netflix for its original content (what little I've seen of it hasn't blown me away).

I find the post-play hijinks tedious, too.

I looked at what was added for August, and it's by far the least appealing list of new additions I've ever seen. There were *maybe* four titles that I might be inclined to add to my list, and those would be "pity adds."

I'm really considering plowing through the old shows that I sense are going to disappear (like Columbo, Rockford Files, etc.) and cancelling my subscription.

At this point, I'd rather invest $10 a month in physical media that I know I will have in five years than continue to pay for a database that is steadily decreasing in the ways that matter to me.

tl;dr I love this site but would completely understand if you've had enough of it.

Special_snowflake said...

Actually, you can disable the obnoxious game component (where's the remote quickly before the next awful movie that I would never select start game) of Netflix in the playback setting of your account on the website.

In general, I agree the transition over to all or nothing that Netflix is doing with their programming is a disservice to viewers. I do enjoy some of their original programming, but there are times when I want something new to me of a classic bent or just escapist. Netflix's vaunted algorithm really fails spectacularly for eclectic viewers. So your blog was a good go to for satisfying that itch. Now the service is turning into a viewing choice for only the millennial age, which is a disservice to them since some do want older more seasoned classics. (Stop laughing! There are some! It's not just an urban legend!)

The Netflix Rokku interface is a bit clunky, but certainly better than most smart tVs, but not as friendly as PS3 or PS4. I suspect that the interface problems are a outcome of satisfying multiple platforms and not so much a mismanaged attempt on Netflix's hands, but the devices themselves.

Whatever you chose to do with this blog, I have enjoyed your postings and wish you well in the future. Maybe you could select some of the more eclectic selections to feature or maybe if you could please, please tell us how the freakin' algorithm manages to find such weird categories after watching something like Kolchak Night Stalker-- well I'd be grateful. I'm not entirely convinced that it isn't just a raccoon spitting at a troubled turtle marked with different words on it's shell that a dyslexic intern jots down as your newest categories.

Thank you for all of your hard work on this blog, it is appreciated!

Brian Clarkson said...

The whole thing with the threats to eliminate the expiration dates: Sometime, it's the only thing that gets me to spur watching a film that's going away.

The post-play/credits: Yeah, it annoys me. But pay cable services do the exact thing, too. It's annoying when they do it.

Streaming: Yeah, I wish they would let us see My List as opposed to having me scroll through all the choices (my queue is right around 475 now).

Set top player improvement: Fortunately, haven't had that problem yet. Hope it's not as annoying as the computer website when I'm looking things up . No, I don't want to play that thing, I just want to see more about it. Sigh.

Selection: Yeah, I was hurt by the number of titles that went away last month. Hope they don't go the way of HBO with original programs everywhere and only 200 movies per month. But it's still got a better variety of shows and movies than you'll find anywhere outside of illegal streaming/downloading. Don't have cable, so being able to see Mad Men and Breaking Bad as well as network series like Lost and NCIS is appreciated. Yeah, I'd like more older films to make its way there (there's a lot of classics I haven't seen yet), but the variety still makes it worth it. For now. If they lose 1,000 titles again next month, I'll have to rethink things, particularly since I have Hulu as well.

WoNN: You do your thing, whether it's a limited package or holding out for awhile. I'll still list the movies/shows each week for Rotten Tomatoes because I like to do it and it's one of the things I'm known for. But yeah, it's frustrating how Netflix does things at times.

Starchild said...

Glad to hear from you. I understand your frustrations. I have a PS3, and I don't seem to have quite as many problems as you. I turned off auto play so I get to watch the credits! It's under "My Account", just in case you missed it.

August's list is rather crappy. I don't care, because for $13 I get disks too and this is a fantastic time for no cable people, because CSI, Criminal Minds, NCIS, Person of Interest, Bones.......LOL! All of them will show up in August and September so I will be too busy watching to stream much.

I do like your lists and your reviews. Especially for August. Yes I know - Hurt's Locker. But most of the titles are unknown and I am so happy when someone points out an obscure film that is really worth watching. I mean, who would think to watch Rabbit Proof Fence or Taking Chance or Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Yet those movies were spectacular and really stick in your mind, if you know what I mean.

Old ladies babble, don't we! I hope you at least keep your blog going, and point out movies we might miss. By the way - the expiration dates aren't going anywhere. I'll bet someone on that!

Pox Voldius said...

I watch NF on my laptop, and even with the auto-play supposedly turned off, according to the settings on my account, it still makes me go through the hassle of extra clicking if I want to actually be able to read the end credits on anything. And then the "back to browse" button now takes me to anywhere except the last page I was on (My List), so now I've also got extra clicks to get back to the My List page. :P

But I have to say, I do appreciate the advance warning I get from this site, and from the commenters on this site that have dvd plans & get the notices earlier than I do, about what's expiring when (when there's warning to be had, anyhow), because then I have a better chance of getting them all watched before they go.

charles morris said...

Bravo, I couldn't agree with you more. I'm not inspired with the change for the sake of change that I've seen happening with NetFlix. I used to live for this site, but now, it's like they don't care if we stay or not!

Kirby said...

I thankfully haven't experienced some of the issues you all have, yet at least (knock on wood). I use a Sony Blu-ray player to watch Netflix, perhaps that's why. My onscreen menu hasn't changed like the website, which is really user "unfriendly" in my opinion, especially when going back and forth from the streaming side to the DVD side. I am really annoyed by the "continue watching" queue, btw, which has movies and shows that I have watched completely so why do I need to "continue watching" them..? The programmers at Netflix don't seem to know to leave well enough alone.

I am troubled by the possibility of expiration dates being eliminated, as it usually "forces" me to watch the movie sooner. Hopefully customer complaints will keep them around, someone should start a petition. Amazon Prime does seem to be picking up some of the slack there (for me at least), but don't get me started on their horror show of an interface.

will g said...

I would disagree with only one thing in your post David, and that is that Instantwatcher and New On Netflix USA provide better raw data. At least as far as expirations go, this is not true. Instantwatcher doesn't provide ANY information on expirations, as far as I can see, and New On Netflix, while excellent, tends to post their information very late. There are quite a few expiring titles we have listed in the previous threads that they haven't got around to posting yet. And there is no place on that site for readers to post their own contributions as there is here.

With this persistent rumor that Netflix is thinking about doing away with expiration warnings altogether (though at this point that is nothing but a rumor), this site may become just about the only place on the web to find information on what's leaving Instant with more than a few days' notice. I realize you may not want to continue posting and updating your own expiration lists, but I'd implore you to at least keep threads for readers to post our lists. Thanks!

David Speranza said...

Thank you, everyone, for your thoughtful comments. Along with the support, it's great to see I'm not just some old crank screaming into the wind (or not doing it alone, anyway). To address a few of your specific comments:

1) Special_snowflake: Turning auto-play off in user settings does not turn off post-play. If it did, I'd be a much happier camper. All it does is keep the next episode or movie from starting automatically.

2) Also: I don't think we can blame the Roku player or the variety of streaming devices for the poor interface. When I called Roku about this a while back, they told me that, unlike all their other channels, Netflix creates its own UI. Plus, earlier versions had all those things that are now missing--and there was no damn post-play!--so it's not like we're asking for the impossible.

3) Brian: I realize cable channels are terrible about junking up the viewing experience--which is why I haven't had cable in 15 years. It's also why streaming video came as such a relief.

4) Kirby: I agree that "Continue Watching" is a misnomer, and thought it was a dumb replacement for the perfectly fine "Recently Watched." Yet another instance of the Netflix nabobs fixing something that wasn't broke.

5) Starchild: Right now I don't plan to give up entirely on monthly recommendations, but at the very least I'd like to take a break before deciding how much (or how little) information to share. To be honest, it's not easy for me to say "No more lists!", since I still have the urge to update everything. But I also know that, for my own sanity, I may need to keep my compulsiveness in check. We'll see.

6) Will: I do understand your concern. While Instantwatcher is great for listing new titles and New On Netflix USA offers a pretty comprehensive list of what's expiring (and what's left), I recognize that a lot of departing titles still slip through the cracks--titles you guys have been great about catching here in the comments. I'm currently pondering the best way to address this, since it would be a shame to squander such a useful resource (and gathering place). Stay tuned.

Again, thanks everyone for chiming in and for all your contributions. While the dust settles over here, don't forget that I'll continue to provide regular (if less extensive) updates on the Prime blog. With any luck, that can become as popular a destination as this one has been. Unless Amazon starts pulling a Netflix on us, that is...

CanandaiguaNY said...

David: I hope you can continue to offer a page with the list of coming expirations, with comments so that we can add what we find. Except for the titles which disappear without warning (I've lost over 30 last month), my TV app still gives me two weeks warning for films and MyList a one week warning. But I like to see what others get from their lists, as I find some expiring titles that I want to see that I didn't know were even streaming. So I catch them before they go. If the list at the top were updated once a week or so, that would be great

I just added a new expiration on the comment page for your last blog.

A second page where we can whine about Netflix would be nice too. I understand that Netflix is a corporate giant in business to maximize profit for its investors, and it is changing its business model in a way that means it will no longer keep a huge inventory of titles to stream on demand. When it drops the numbers of titles I want to watch to below what I think the price is worth, I'll cancel. I don't expect that Netflix is going to conduct its business just to suit me. Its hotshots are estimating where the greatest profit can be made. That is the way the capitalist market works.

The Donosaur said...

At any given time, I have a probably a hundred or so movies in my
queue. Even so, it is not very often I see an expired warning (which
probably says more about me than it does about Netflix); when I do,
it's "move this one to the top" time.

In a way, it reminds me of my temporary holiday help in a local
headshop/waterbed store. Signs such as "Sale Ends this Weekend!"
and "For a Limited Time Only!" or my old favorite, "Still Going
Out of Business," used to bring in a lot of customers. ;)

Anonymous said...

Check Flix Plus by Lifehacker in Chrome Store. It has been updated to work with the crappy UI.
You can set "My List" to Manual and have Flix Plus create a list of all expiring items with the dates. One of the options is to adjust post-play.

Also if you check Netflix website in the movie tabs / Details / > under Audio, they have now included "Availability Until" with expiring date. This is something new, so maybe they have put the elimination of the expiration dates on hold for now.

Hope the info is useful.

David Speranza said...

That's great to know, Anonymous, thanks. Works really well for those who watch on a computer. Now if only Roku had something like that...

D said...

Cable and music industry is dying, and they're paying top dollar to get your money and your attention- there is a much larger plan going on

will g said...

Yes thank you Anonymous for pointing out where the elusive expiration date is posted on the Instant interface. Unfortunately I have to report that it's spotty. Some dates that appear when I do a DVD search are not appearing on the Instant page. That's frustrating. Hopefully it will improve since it's new.

Danielle said...

I just got a new blu-ray player yesterday (my old one crapped out over the weekend) and I thought the new Netflix interface was a Sony vs Panasonic thing! It is kind of horrible, but I thought maybe I just need to get used to it... I do miss seeing how many titles are in each row (including my own queue). Also I have been scrolling around searching for expiration dates and I haven't seen any on any titles yet. Have they stopped posting them already or is nothing expiring soon? Hmm. I really depend on a LITTLE warning!!

will g said...

@Danielle Damn you're right, the expiration dates seem to be missing now on the Instant pages. I swear they were there just a couple of days ago! (Well some of them were, as I said it was spotty.) Should have known it was too good to be true.

David Speranza said...

Geez, I can't believe those dates have disappeared again. And here I thought I had one less thing to complain about! *sigh*

Andy K said...

It's great to see I'm not the only one dissatisfied with the recent changes. I too am considering dropping streaming (keeping the DVD, though) and moving to Amazon or someone else.


Andy K said...

I just called Netflix. I tried to be very polite to the poor woman who handled the call (hey, she just works there), but I did share my irritations with the changes and asked if Netflix was investigating any of the customer complaints. She said, "yes, they always do" but I think that's the standard answer.

I also mentioned the general uproar online concerning the recent changes. When she asked for specifics, I pointed her to this blog (Aug 2 post in particular) and she looked it up right then! (OK, she impressed me with this.) I shared that this post really articulated many of my dislikes as well.

She took notes and said our conversation and her notes (including the blog URL) would be sent to the research department for review.

That means I'll hold off on switching to another streaming service for a month or so.

Don't forget several years ago they were going to do away with the multiple queues for family members. Netflix actually changed policy and kept the queues.

David Speranza said...

Nice work, Andy. Glad to know that at least *someone* over at Netflix will be seeing this post. Let's cross our fingers that it--and other people's calls--make some kind of impression.

Carol said...

Sorry for the delay in responding to this post; I was away from the computer for a couple of days. David, what I hear you saying is that what would work best for you is to bring the blog to a close. Unlike Netflix, however, you appreciate those who appreciate you, and want to do the honorable thing.

Given that your raison d’etre for the blog has been seriously compromised by the dwindling number of older, classic, and/or lesser known but worthy titles offered by Netflix, coupled with the time demands of maintaining the blog vs. other demands on your time, it would seem that bringing it to a dignified end makes the most sense. In your shoes, I’m pretty sure that’s what I would do.

What I would find tremendously helpful before the end credits roll is to have a rather comprehensive list of resources to meet the needs that WoNN has been addressing, specifically:

Additional sites for streaming movies/shows online, e.g., Hulu offers an extensive number of Criterion Collection movies - if you want classics, there are a lot of them here, especially foreign classics. I was not aware of Fandor before someone mentioned it in the comments. It would be nice to know where we can look for some of what Netflix is no longer offering as much of, as well as where we might venture if we decide to chuck Netflix altogether. (I will spare you my moral angst around this issue.)

Where to find new and upcoming Netflix titles, e.g., instantwatcher.

Where to find expiring titles, e.g., Last Chance page on New on Netflix.

Where to find good critic reviews, e.g., Rotten Tomatoes offers both critic and audience reviews, with a special page of top critic review snippets with links to the full reviews.

Where to find technical info. There seem to be more comments on WoNN around technical issues. Are there other sites that deal with the technical aspects of using Netflix?

I know some of these have been addressed before, but it would be nice to have it all organized in one place. There is a lot of knowledge in the minds of WoNN followers, as well as from you, David. I’d love to mine it while everyone is still tuned in, and have a kind of farewell reference page, with enough time for us to ask questions if we need clarification. WoNN has been a terrific resource and hand-holder, especially through the recent insanity. It would be great if we could all feel okay about facing the future without it.

If, on the other hand, you decide to continue, in whatever incarnation, I will be happy to follow along. Bon chance either way.

8traxrule said...

Netflix actually paid some tech guy to write a program that automatically detects end credits and intrudes on them:

I have a Roku 1 which doesn't do this, but it's been having problems. I bought a Roku Stick hoping to replace it with that, but the Netflix interface on that is completely unacceptable. It ruins the end of a movie when they do that, plus I want to actually watch the entire thing to the end. If I didn't, I'd pick up the remote myself and bring the menus up!

I'm relatively close to Netflix's headquarters so I'm planning on taking a drive over soon and talking to them about it if this doesn't stop beforehand. If the day ever comes when they intrude on ALL devices, they will be cancelled for good.

David Speranza said...

@Carol: Thank you for all your thoughts on this. I wouldn't say I'm ready to shut this site down, only that I need to reduce its monthly scope. What that entails exactly will be determined in the weeks ahead. I'm already preparing a master list of all my reviews for easy reference, and will also try instituting a standalone comments page (as mentioned a while back) for any off-topic discussions. Your idea to compile a reference page is likewise a good one, and I'll see what I can do.

@8traxrule: I feel your pain, having graduated from the Roku LT to the Stick and running into the same headaches. If the LT hadn't become so slow and glitchy, I definitely would have gone back to it for its friendlier interface. I hate to think how much those tech guys are getting paid to take away all the good stuff we like.

Good luck on your Netflix sojourn! For me it brings up images of Don Quixote charging headlong towards the logo-emblazoned fortress of Netflix HQ, a Roku Stick held high in one hand.

Mark L said...

Mark L said...

This bugs me.

Whenever you paused a movie for too long you would refresh your browser to pick up where you left off as the on screen instructions tell you. That was before the redesign.

Now, (even though it still tells you to do that) refresh kicks you back to the main screen. You either need to then reenter the movie title in the search bar or scroll down to find the category "Continue Watching" to find your movie. Netflix is a great example of the saying "if it ain't broke don't fix it".
August 9, 2015 at 8:08 AM

Steve said...

The worst for me is the pre-play! Who the heck thought that was a good idea? I click on a title to add it to my list or to read a description, not to auto-play it!

Thank goodness for Hulu movies. They aren't as good but at least it isn't forcing the movie to start!

8traxrule said...

Hulu is an absolute joke- even though their movies are free from commercials and on-screen logos that their TV shows have, they still break into the end credits to get you to watch something else right away. I watched "Mysterious Skin" during a free trial and the ending was extremely emotional and Hulu just RUINED it by having pictures from other movies pop up! They can't even deliver 5.1 sound either.

David Speranza said...

Sorry to hear that, @8traxrule. That hasn't been my experience with Hulu at all. I watch it on my TV via the Roku Stick and it's very well behaved. Perhaps it's different when watching in a browser? Or when it's paid for? Anyone else having a similar experience?

And yes, @Steve, I totally agree: Pre-play is especially boneheaded. I can't imagine anyone thinking, "Hey, you know what Netflix needs...?"

Travis said...

Pre-play is awful for the reasons mentioned. I finally experienced it this week. I also had my first experience with a Netflix *AUDIO* ad in the spotlight for its upcoming Narcos. The music and sound were extremely jarring to hear as soon as I loaded the app on my device. These developments have been very unpleasant intrusions, but my faith in Netflix to improve the user experience dwindles by the day.

David Speranza said...

Amen, Travis. I just angrily complained to Netflix customer service about pre-play. I suggest everyone here do so as well. The only way to convince them to change their ways is through sheer numbers.

Starchild said...

I don't have a lot of the problems that many of you have. With my playstation, if I really want to see the credits I just push the back button as soon as the credits start and it returns to the credits. Usually I don't care. If I want to identify someone who looks familiar, I use IMD on my computer - it has a lot of the faces of the cast!
I love classics. At first I was disturbed when they would be dropped, but since I figured out that they would be back in a few months I didn't worry about it any more. Plus, I am a huge public library fan, and I can usually get any classic I want there.

When I called customer service about the new format being too hard to read and too black, others must have complained too because they "lightened" the black and put space between the rows. They cancelled sending out movies on Saturday, which disappointed me. But now they check movies in and send you an extra disk when they mail them on Monday. I have never known a company to have better customer service.

My son added them up, and my family streamed 131 movies in August! I certainly don't miss the $8 and that's a lot of value IMO. I use the computer to play with my lists (500 in my streaming list and 506 in my disk queue). In the morning I put the ones expiring or ones I want to watch at the top. I looked at the list of Epix titles leaving and none of them were shows I really cared about, plus they are still on disk.

Each of us is different. I can easily afford the $25 a month, so I am still a huge Netflix fan. Others certainly have different opinions.

Ventum Mingit said...

If this is redundant info or being posted in the wrong location I apologize in advance.
I have a streaming only account & what I am finding is that if start doing my title search from My List page, set to manual ordering, I get the old style search results that will give an expiration date, if there is one, when you hover over the title, which results in a lot less clicks to check an expiration date on a title that isn't in my list already.

David Speranza said...

Thanks, Ventum. Yes, this was established shortly after the new interface arrived (it's how I do all my searching), but it's still good info.

Helen said...

I agree with many of the points made in this blog. Let me tell you mine. In the past, when you were checking out DVD MOVIES, there was a plus sign at the bottom if it was also on streaming - NO MORE. Netflix, in its wise way decided we should just leave the page, type in the name of the DVD we were looking at, and see if it is in fact also on streaming. Can anyone explain WHY? This is the most frustrating, annoying and stupid thing they have ever done.

Helen said...

One more thought - if we wait long enough, Netflix is going to do itself in without any help. Right now, its still the best to offer streaming video to us, but is slipping more and more into the youth culture with shoot 'em up, Marvel comic stuff, sci-fi, stores that are more like Halmark than good ones. The only salvation is the English and Irish content which is 500% better than American anyway. If I didn't watch the English detective series and other British stuff, I wouldn't have anything to watch anymore.

Kate Supino said...

This is a pet peeve of mine, too. I just started an online petition at, which will be sent to Neil Hunt the "user experience" chief at Netflix.
Please consider signing it. Thanks.

8traxrule said...

Thanks Kate- I was going to start a petition there myself but I'll help promote yours instead. It's absolutely ridiculous that anyone at Netflix would have thought that was a good idea- they at least need to give us the option to disable it! They will usually tell you to use your remote to bring the credits back onscreen, but as far as I'm concerned the ending of the movie has already been ruined at that point. Make the idiots who don't want to watch the credits pick up their remotes instead!