Saturday, March 25, 2023

Netflix and reasons to drop it

I don't watch Netflix.

The reason is simple: they don't carry enough content for me to watch to justify the cost.

Sure, Netflix starts at $7/month for the ad-supported plan (with content restrictions), and $10/month for the ad-free plan (without content restrictions). It's not that much.

However, it doesn't take many of those "not that much" subscriptions to end up paying almost as much as cable.

That's why I subscribe to a single service at a time. I'll subscribe to one service ($10-15) this month, then a different service next month, and a different the following month. And so on and so on. Over a year, I've watch a lot of content for not as much money.

Netflix sometimes is in the rotation, but I have gone years without subscribing once. That's because of the content. And the frustrating menu system that auto-launches content.

To be fair, Netflix finally stopped playing stuff automatically. Or at least, they allowed me more options to stop stuff from playing before I hit Play. So good for them for paying attention to what customers want.

However, none of that makes up for the limited amount of content that interests me. And, it seems there's another reason that some don't like Netflix. It has to do with their suggestions:

When I canceled Netflix, I mostly kicked it away because of a lack of pressing new programming. But earlier this week, I heard podcaster Merlin Mann (opens in new tab) declare that that Netflix "wants [him] to be somebody different than who" he is.

The second I heard that, I realized a significant reason why I canceled Netflix this year that I had never even thought of. Netflix, as you may find when you use it, really cares about promoting shows that you may have have zero interest in. I'm trying to see things with an open mind these days (heck, I started Yellowstone, which I thought I'd never do), but Netflix often seems to swing and miss.

Netflix has long pushed stuff I didn't like or care about. Did that enter into my decision to drop them? Actually, no. But it didn't help. And I did notice what they were doing.

I dropped Netflix because the value just wasn't there. But I understand about why others are frustrated with Netflix pushing content that is out of line with their viewing history.

I will add that the last time I looked at Netflix and their suggestions, they did a better job of not pushing uninteresting content. When I did subscribe, I took the time to give Likes and Dislikes to many of the things they pushed, and to their credit, they have done better. But they have a ways to go.

If you are frustrated with the way Netflix is promoting content that you don't have an interest, I understand. And if you drop them from your Streaming Life, maybe they'll understand as well.

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