Free Markets, Free People

Doing the Netflix thing

Not the usual fare for this blog, but what they heck.  I recently signed up for Netflix.  Having a PS3 – yes an old geezer like me likes gaming and the fact that it is a Blue Ray player – I can do instant selection and streaming via my PS3 or on my laptop.

I believe the price is $8.99 a month (they have various plans) for a “single disc”, but unlimited watching.  They have a lot of content that I haven’t seen available via that method – especially TV shows sans commercials.  Some I’ve seen, some I haven’t and some I’m enjoying viewing again (for instance all the Firefly episodes – why didn’t that series stick?).

Noticed this today from the Netflix CEO:

In terms of streaming content, we are rapidly expanding our TV shows available for streaming and since our last call we have added thousands of TV episodes from new deals with Fox, MTV Networks and Warner Television. These shows include all seasons of “24,” “Futurama,” “Lie To Me,” “The Chapelle Show,” “Nip/Tuck” and “Veronica Mars,” and in a few weeks all seasons of “The Family Guy” will be available to stream as well. We see TV shows as equally important to our franchise as movies.

And, there’s more:

As we evolve from DVD by mail into streaming, the role of exclusive content changes….At this point we can start to afford some major TV shows and movies on an exclusive basis, and plan going forward on a mix of more-expensive exclusive content and lower-cost non-exclusive content. Our willingness to license some higher-priced exclusive content will open up new licensing opportunities for us…[we] are looking for more exclusive deals, especially on TV shows, as well as non-exclusive content.

So with the percentage of their customers using the streaming media option, its just going to get better.

I just dropped HBO, Showtime and Starz (saving a lot of money) from Direct TV.  I no longer have to look at their listings and then record what I want to watch.  Now I just browse the Netflix selections and watch what I want.  If you’re a PS3 owner they send you a “streaming disc” you have to use to watch on your TV (not necessary for your laptop).  The interface works quite well.   Yup, for $8.99 per month, a very satisfied customer.

All right – back to the dismal world of politics.


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21 Responses to Doing the Netflix thing

  • Firefly was totally botched by the Fox executives. They put it in a crappy time slot and showed the episodes out of order — the pilot, which provided some necessary backup information, I think was shown as #4 or thereabouts. So they confused people, lost viewers, and cancelled it.
    Make sure to see the Serenity movie (2005) too, it’s on Netflix as well. And it is Made. Of. Awesome.

  • I’ve only seen this movie, The Baader Meinhof Complex, via Netflix (the in-the-mail version). This post reminded me of it. It’s about the Red Army Faction that terrorized West Germany during the 70s.

    The movie is really a vignette because while it does a good job telling the story there is much that is left un-explained, like where the money came from, how the RAF got hooked up with the Palestinian terror outfits, and the role of the Stasi (East Germany’s secret police) and the KGB.

    But anyone looking for a very interesting dramatization of the recent history of the hard Left at work with extraordinary violence should take a look. The mindset of the “revolutionaries” is what’s most interesting, and I assume that the rhetoric they use in the film is fairly close to their actual outlook.

  • Until they put more Dark Shadows on instant streaming, it’s no good!

  • If you had a 360, Bruce, we could do movie night with the Parties feature, and netflix…

  • Having a PS3 – yes an old geezer like me likes gaming…

    I’m amused to get friend requests on Xbox Live from kids whose voices sound about 12 or 13. If they knew they were playing Halo against someone older than their dad, I bet they would be aghast.

    • If they knew they were playing Halo against someone older than their dad, I bet they would be aghast.

      >>> Only if you schooled them (and then tea bagged their dead bodies)

      • I don’t have teenage reflexes, so my goal is to be respectable. The rule around our house (I have two teenage boys) is “Dad doesn’t always suck.” That’s what they pull out when I get the better of them.   

        I won’t do the tea-bagging thing, though. I don’t like end-zone dances either. No class, in either case.

    • I do “Battle Front 1943” on line. I’m a sniper. And I can get a headshot bonus from a hell of a long way away. But I’m not fast enough nor do I have the reactions to survive in the skirmishes. I have to find a place, hide out, and pick ’em off as they go by. I’ve gotten pretty darn good at leading them too.

      •  I have the reactions to survive in the skirmishes. I have to find a place, hide out, and pick ‘em off as they go by. I’ve gotten pretty darn good at leading them too.

        >>> BOOO!!!! CAMPER!!!!

      • Battlefield 1943. Not Front. That’s a great game. I’ve got a PS3 and a 360.  The PS3 is mainly for Blu-Ray; most of my friends are on the 360.
        My friends got me into the original Halo with LAN parties years ago. I’m respectable, and occasionally brilliant. My favorite memory is playing a custom game with friends — 14 of us free-for-all — on Halo 2 shotguns and pistols and winning the match. Two guys came through a teleporter shooting at each other, I dropped one grenade on them and killed both of them.

        • Yup, “field”, not “front”. Just finished up a few games – getting quite good at the quick headshot. Unfortunately, I’m not the only one that’s quite good at them … heh. Have, however, developed some pretty safe hidey holes for sniping. All except Wake – there are none.

  • I had no idea you were a browncoat. Me, too.

  • Fox kind of killed it from the outset. They kept changing the time slot, and played the episodes out of order. At the time, Joss Wheedon said he’d never work with Fox again.

    • They also ran it against the then-new Enterprise. Hmm, I wonder what nerds are going to watch, a new Star Trek, or some weird Fox show with cowboys in space, or something?

      Of course, now the tables have somewhat turned!

  • If i want to stream them to my tv (i have direct tv but no game system or blueray) What would be my cheapest otption?

    • Probably a Roku player. You can get a standard def one for $80. A high-def one will run you $100. You can get them at
      But the cheapest method might be if you’ve got a laptop with HDMI out.

  • Netflix instant has gotten so much better than when I first started subscribing. Even a year ago, I would go through the entire instant listing and it was rare to find something I would even consider watching. Just about everything even a year ago was crappy made the sci-fi channel movies. Now I’ve watched the first 2 season of 24 and I’m starting on season 3. I still get a lot of newer movies on blu-ray because the picture quality on instant isn’t quite there yet.

  • One of my husband’s satisfied customers gifted him a Roku XR, a device which can stream Netflix, Amazon On Demand, etc.  It has totally changed our household.  I never hear any more, “So are there any new shows we want to watch on Hulu?”  My husband just whips out the Roku remote and instantly we have whatever we want to watch.  One day he sat the kids down and showed them his favorite five-minute clips of what must have been every movie he ever liked during his teenage years.
    It is so easy to use that even our 4 year old can operate it.  He gets up early so he can watch Barney without taking flak from the older kids.  (We have to keep a close eye on him, though, because one day we found he’d turned on South Park when no one was looking.)

  • Netflix is great… doing the PS3 thing, and it works on the Wii too.  Finally can use the Wii for something useful.