Still reeling from a debilitating $6 per month price increase, Netflix customers have a new policy to get all bitchy about: The video service now limits how many steams you can watch at once. Cue the entitlement!
Netflix used to let all its customers stream a bunch of videos — at least three — on different devices at the same time. So one spouse could be downloading, say, a documentary on an iPad in the study; another could be watching a horror flick via Xbox360 in the living room; and their kid could be vegetating to Disney on an iPhone. No more: Netflix will limit customers on the cheapest plan to a single stream. More streams will be permitted on more expensive plans.
This sounds perfectly reasonable. But reading about the new limits online, you'd think Netflix was throwing people out of their homes in the dead of winter. "[Netflix's] policy change will hit families hard," said the blog "Stop the Cap!" "Now may not be the best time to further antagonize loyal customers." InteractiveTV Today wrote an open letter to Netflix, complaining about how the service is losing video controlled by Starz next year. "I thought we would be together forever," said the trade publication, "but things have changed."
The latest round of indignity follows hot the heels of Netflix customers jamming Facebook, Twitter and Netflix's blog comments with angry vulgarities because its DVD + streaming plans were up to $6 per month more expensive. That's twenty whole cents per day.
So, to summarize the lessons of the last few months, Netflix customers should be able to pay $10 per month for unlimited DVDs, unlimited streaming to as many screens as their families can watch at once, without ever having to give up any TV shows or movies to hold down costs. And no touching their BitTorrent piracy, either.
If people can't have all of those things, it is a grave injustice on par with eliminating food stamps.
TV might melt your brain, but Netflix will, apparently, turn you into a short tempered ridiculously demanding monster. Stream at your own risk.
Update: And the streaming limit isn't actually a real thing, it's a tech glitch. But no one should let that keep them from getting very upset at other things Netflix might be doing to the cheap video on demand feeding trough.