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Verizon Considering Purchase of Netflix 139

schwit1 writes "Shares of Netflix soared more than 6% Monday on a report that Verizon Communications is considering buying the troubled movie renter. Verizon is reportedly evaluating whether a purchase of Netflix could provide an entry into the video delivery business, DealReporter said, citing a source close to the matter. The news comes as Netflix continues to struggle from a series of missteps earlier this year when it raised subscription prices and separated its DVD-by-mail service and streaming. Netflix's stock price plunged to a new 52-week low two weeks ago when the company warned it would fall to a loss in 2012 if it failed to boost its bruised customer base."
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Verizon Considering Purchase of Netflix

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:39PM (#38348772)

    Wowsers, if you thought Netflix was nickel-and-diming you, wait til Verizon gets hold of them. Probably cost you a quarter every time you use fast forward.

    • You forgot one of their old slogans that still applies to Verizon, and would apply to Netflix.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Good! After all the whining of a measly $2/month increase in price brought on Netflix by the movie studios, I'd say the spoiled brats that make up TEH BLAGOSPHERE needed a cold, hard lesson in "shut your fucking trap and learn to appreciate what you've got or someone might make it worse"! If it weren't for their incessant, self-centered whining*, Netflix wouldn't have lost quite so many customers and money and would've still looked too expensive for Verizon to absorb! So, congrats on digging too deep, gu

      • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

        by Synerg1y ( 2169962 )

        Damn, I'm torn between calling you a dumbfag or a prophet :P

      • Seriously Slashdot, implement a +6 for this. Comment of the year.

      • by Luke727 ( 547923 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @08:41PM (#38350336) Homepage Journal

        I already had a relatively expensive plan so it was only a few bucks for me, but some people's plans almost doubled in price. Granted $7 or $8 is not that much in the scheme of things, but if my price doubled overnight without bringing any improvements in the service then I might also be pissed. I understand it was out of Netflix's control, but the condescending (lack of) explanation was a huge misstep. They should have just been forthcoming and honest about it and a lot of this rage could have been avoided.

        • by wisnoskij ( 1206448 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @09:39PM (#38350774) Homepage

          Would +1 if I had mod points.
          That is the whole point, it was never that expensive, but it almost doubled in price (and was a whole lot more then $2 mentioned).
          And to make matters worse the company was like. "We are sure that our customers absolutely love how their bill will be double next month while getting the exact same service. What an amazing thing we are doing for our customers."

          • by Ihmhi ( 1206036 )

            Netflix had a chance to win here. They could have just been honest outright and said "Last year we paid $50,000,000 for this content. Now we're being asked to pay $300,000,000[1] for it. We unfortunately have to raise our fees in order to keep bringing you the same excellent service that we always have been."

            [1] Numbers from the department of pulling figures out of my ass

            • Netflix had a chance to win here. They could have just been honest outright and said "Last year we paid $50,000,000 for this content. Now we're being asked to pay $300,000,000[1] for it. We unfortunately have to raise our fees in order to keep bringing you the same excellent service that we always have been."

              [1] Numbers from the department of pulling figures out of my ass

              I can imagine a severe "anti-defamation" clause in their contract with the content producers, something to the effect of: "Purchaser of license shall never directly or indirectly disclose the cost of license in any manner not strictly required by law, and then only in a positive light. Any comment attributable to purchaser of license which in any way may be construed to imply that license is not an absolute bargain, and wonderful value will be grounds for retro-active tripling of said license purchase pric

        • by JWW ( 79176 )

          Shit, if Version buys Netflix, I'd expect the most basic plan they offer will be at least $40/month and would probably have way less content than Netflix has now (newer movies will be premium service).

          I just have to say the following


      • by pavon ( 30274 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @09:15PM (#38350604)

        The fact of the matter is that the majority of people on the old Netflix plan only used the streaming service or the DVD plan because it came free with the one they wanted. They never had any interest in paying for the other service, so when Netflix decided to start charging for it, they naturally dropped the one they didn't use.

        There was a smaller group that liked both, and decided that even with a 60% price increase, that it was worth it.

        There was an even smaller group that liked both, but were frustrated with the streaming selection, annoyed at the screwed up website. They were already looking at other options, but nothing came close to the combined value of DVDs and streaming. When the price increase came, this changed and other options started looking more competitive so they left. But again this was a very small group.

        I wouldn't call people who don't want to pay for a service they hardly use spoiled. I wouldn't call people who can find a better deal spoiled. I call it obvious, and if Netflix had done any customer research they would have as well.

        • by JWW ( 79176 )

          When their actions cause Netflix's stock to nosedive such that it makes them a takeover target for Verizon, I'm damn sure going to call them spoiled.

          Their bitching over the price increase is going to lead to all of us who stuck with Netflix getting screwed big time by Verizon.

          • Wait, you're upset because a bunch of people who were upset with the service they were getting refused to stay with the service and thereby subsidize your use of it, and YOU are calling THEM spoiled?

        • I can't speak to what other people like/dislike about Netflix. In my family, we have had a 3 disc at a time subscription since we bought our first DVD player in 1990-something. Around about 2003-ish, we started paying for a 3 disc at a time subscription for one set of parents (who live in a trailer park with no broadcast TV and are too cheap/poor to purchase cable.) When I was laid off a couple of years ago, and Netflix had been "streaming for free" for awhile, we reduced both subscriptions to 2 discs +

      • You realize that this would punish those of us who stayed....

      • Wrong! It's only those of us prepared to vote with their wallets who cap the price. Whoever owns one company or another is immaterial. Without us, they would find the ceiling of what YOU are willing to pay, which is apparently higher. (How much?) As for netflix disappearing, who cares? As they proved recently (by simply passing along a rate hike from the content owners), netflix is just a middleman with no real influence on anything.
      • by RMingin ( 985478 )

        It was only a 2$/month price change in Netflix's best case. In my case, 3 discs at once, 2 DVD, 1 Bluray plus streaming was 17.99$ previously, and a great deal. They revised that to 27.99$/month for me, and I responded by cancelling.

        This single example is the problem Netflix had, in microcosm. Sticker shock. Was it still a good deal at 28$/month? Probably. Could I have adjusted my plan down to, say, single Bluray and streaming to get my old price point back? Looks like. Did I? No.

        Why not? Because the differ

      • I'm one of those "spoiled brats". I'm curious what lesson I learned. I left Netflix and left loudly. So... not sure how it got worse. The service price exceeded benefit. People left. Netflix lost.

        Netflix didn't lose money to whining. Netflix lost money because people left. And having left, why do we care one iota if it becomes worse or is bought by Verizon or the People's Republic of China.

        Let me nail this point for you: we don't care.

        All you are saying is, "Hah! See, the price went up, and you left!

      • People already voted with their wallet - if they LEFT Netflix after a minor price bump, do you really think they care if Verizon takes the helm? If I've already taken my toys and gone home I don't care if a bigger bully starts wandering the playground.

        Realistically, if Verizon cranks up the restrictions and fees, you can bet that they'll succeed in merely driving the service further into the ground than Netflix could do alone.

    • by jamsessionjay ( 802511 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @07:07PM (#38349210)

      How is netflix nickel and diming me? It's one rate for streaming to multiple devices, then X amount more depending on how many physical discs you want to hold.

      Nickle and diming is what Verizon does - X amount for Y amount of texts, or download limits, or download speeds, or service areas, or content packages, or voice minutes, and of course this is also largely dependent on which device you are using. And multiple devices? psh. Overcharges on service? That's a another horrible part right there.

      That's real nickle-and-diming. There are so many gotchas I'd need a small book to describe it all. But this netflix hate I do not understand - it's simple and cheap. Is it that you want their service to be free?

      • by Hadlock ( 143607 )

        Try: $3/mo to access the GPS unit built in to your blackberry. That happened.
        Verizon buys netflix: Charges you $0.20 every time you watch a film from the Criterion Collection, $0.40 for any movie released in the last 6 months, and $0.35 for any movie released in the last 18 months. On top of your $15/mo fee.
        Oh and by the way, you'll need a Verizon Cable TV account to use Netflix if you're in a Verizon service area.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        OP here: I never claimed Netflix was nickel and diming, though some of the squeakier wheels seem to think so. As someone only halfway through a Verizon contract, I can say with confidence that those guys are the absolute freakin worst, lading up all their phones with crapware that do what free apps do, but worse, and with monthly fees on top of it.

      • In addition to simple and cheap, there are NO commercials. At all. Hulu has "arguably" better content, but the constant commercials make me not want to subscribe. Cable has many things wrong with it, IMHO, but the biggest one is the commercials. I'm personally happy to pay less than cable to watch whatever I want (within allowable selection, which is quite large!) with no interruptions at all... no time compressed to fit a time slot... no content filtering or censoring. That's what's awesome about Netf
    • At least netflix' customer support right now is good (call them, and see how long it takes to reach someone-- likely under 45 seconds); can you imagine what billing and support will turn into if Verizon gets its mitts on them?

      • I've been a Verizon customer for about 8 years now and have never had to wait longer than 5 minutes at their absolute busiest to speak with customer support. Usually it's more like 30 seconds if there's a wait at all. I know there are cheaper ways to get cell service, but honestly I've never had anything but great service and support from Verizon.
        • I honestly have to agree with this comment. Yes, they're not the cheapest. But for the type of service and support I get for 2 iPhone 4, 1 Samsung Galaxy and one Samsung feature phone for the youngest (she's 11, not getting a smart phone, I don't care if all the "cool kids" have one or not) I have no complaints with Verizon.
          • My complaint list for verizon is as follows:

            • A customer of mine's internet contract was ending in november, so we ordered Verizon Business DSL. Tech was set for November 15 (or something) to install the DSL line. Didnt show. 2 weeks later, shows up, and leaves because "noone was available for the install". Meanwhile, we still dont have internet. Internet was finally installed mid december. For our trouble, we also received a bill for November service (which we noticably did not have).
            • A year later, the
    • Verizon to purchase Netflix. Netflix to be renamed Shitflix. Customers to shit bricks. Verizon to be renamed Shitbrick.

  • by sethstorm ( 512897 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:40PM (#38348796) Homepage

    Instead of having flat-rate streaming movies, it's an add-on that dings you per movie.

    • by Ichijo ( 607641 )

      Instead of having flat-rate streaming movies, it's an add-on that dings you per movie.

      If the price were to vary by movie, then this would allow Netflix to stream more movies. This is why Amazon is able to stream certain movies that Netflix doesn't.

      The "one price fits all" model just doesn't work very well in the real world.

  • God no (Score:5, Insightful)

    by CodeReign ( 2426810 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:40PM (#38348798)

    The CRTC will have a fit and use it as even more reason to keep the lecherous US company from stealing Bell's customers. Damn them netflix hooligans with their fairer prices.

    • Where's mod points when you need them.... This has got to be the most asinine move from competition point of view up north.

      The resident incumbent would jump with joy for such an easy way to throttle this competition.

    • Christ I know and i just signed up for netflix streaming. Please oh ye of the noodly appendege - deliver us from verizon.

  • Oh God no (Score:5, Insightful)

    by realmolo ( 574068 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:41PM (#38348802)

    If Verizon buys Netflix, we'll be paying $15/month for streaming to ONE device at a time, and the DVD delivery will be dropped entirely.There will be a limit of 15 streams a month per account, or 50GB of data, whichever comes first. Additional streams will cost $3.99 each. And you'll have to sign a 2-year contract. And if you want to stream to your PHONE, that will be another $15 a month, on top of the $15/month membership.

    • $5-$20 per device mirroring fee just like the fees they make you pay per cable box to rent them.

    • And that will be the time I drop them (Netflix), because I pay enough now just using Verizon Wireless... Missus is leaning on me bad enough as it is to drop Netflix, but dammit, I like getting all my Star Trek!!
    • ummm, or you could pay zero (to verizon) and move to at least 3 other competitors, roku? for one.
      • by wed128 ( 722152 )

        I have a roku box, and i only use it for netflix.

        If this verizon thing actually happens, and they fuck up the pricing, i will only use it for amazon streaming.

        Doctor who, no BBC in my house. I need internet-streaming-something!

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 12, 2011 @11:24PM (#38351498)

      Netflix subscribers, get used to bills like this:

      $9.99 - Basic service
      $2.55 - Federal taxes
      $1.85 - Network Maintenance fee
      $2.25 - Copyright owners association fee
      $1.45 - Federal Streaming tax
      $0.95 - Streaming content insurance
      $1.35 - Verizon CEO excess compensation fee

    • They won't drop the DVD service. They'll just use the DVD service as overage. You'll start watching a streaming movie online and once you're over quota, they'll just suspend the movie midway through, send you the rest on a DVD, and bill you according to how much more data there was left to watch.

  • NEW! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:41PM (#38348806)

    Streaming that only works well on verizon internet!

  • by theVP ( 835556 ) * on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:41PM (#38348812)
    You know, it's bad enough that ISP's, Verizon definitely included, are using bandwidth caps now, which limits the attraction of a service like Netflix.

    It's bad enough that Verizon charges you extra to use functions on your phone that don't have a damn thing to do with their network at all (Mobile Hotspot).

    I don't think I want to know how they manage to ruin Netflix, if they were to snatch it up.
    • by ackthpt ( 218170 )

      You know, it's bad enough that ISP's, Verizon definitely included, are using bandwidth caps now, which limits the attraction of a service like Netflix.

      It's bad enough that Verizon charges you extra to use functions on your phone that don't have a damn thing to do with their network at all (Mobile Hotspot).

      I don't think I want to know how they manage to ruin Netflix, if they were to snatch it up.

      They'll work it like eBay/PayPal. You sell on eBay, they require you to pay through Paypal.

      So Verizon (or Verizster, or whatever they'll be) sets you up with the video/movie you want to watch, then pounds you for the additional overage fee. What's not to like? (from their perspective.)

    • by Ichijo ( 607641 )

      You know, it's bad enough that ISP's, Verizon definitely included, are using bandwidth caps now, which limits the attraction of a service like Netflix.

      They really ought to make the caps apply only to peak usage periods, similar to cell plans with "unlimited nights and weekends." Then you could stream or download your movies during the off-peak periods to save money.

    • You know, it's bad enough that ISP's, Verizon definitely included, are using bandwidth caps now, which limits the attraction of a service like Netflix.

      Verizon will then be able to get you both ways. The Verizon brand will charge you a fee when you exceed their bandwidth cap, and their new Netflix brand will charge you another fee for exceeding their bandwidth cap (which will surely be introduced when Verizon takes over. I can just see the Verizon execs looking over the Netflix books and saying, "you guys aren't charging by the gigabyte? Oh, this'll be an easy fix!") . Thus, the parent company gets to double dip. It's like printing your own money, only wit

  • Just like the Verizon FiOS site.

  • by milbournosphere ( 1273186 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:44PM (#38348846)
    the content producer. Should this actually happen, it could in no way be good for Netflix's customers, or even the market in general. Content carriers really should be separate from the producers of said content. It provides far too many opportunities for conflicts of interest, including (but not limited to) bandwidth and price preference. This is a bad idea; the telcos have proven time and time again that they are not to be trusted.
  • Netflix vulnerable (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ackthpt ( 218170 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:45PM (#38348850) Homepage Journal

    After their recent misstetp they'll likely be a bargain buy. Expect Verizon to only be interested in the technology, IP and media rights portfolio, while they ditch the people who are running the company.

    • After their recent misstetp they'll likely be a bargain buy. Expect Verizon to only be interested in the technology, IP and media rights portfolio, while they ditch the people who are running the company.

      I'm sure Verizon sees this as the next generation of cable companies. With Netflix being the only real player, this will put them ahead of their competitors in the cable company space (AT&T, Warner, etc.) whose on-demand services are still largely indistinguishable from on-demand 10 years ago. However, I would think that its media rights portfolio would be treated as a toxic asset... its cost is a liability that has thrown Netflix's future into question.

  • That'll definitely kill it. Verizon will force folks to subscribe to their cable service and offer it as an add-on or something horrible like that. I can't see how Verizon won't resist squeezing all the blood out of Netflix like everything else they do.

    I'm going to go hug a Redbox today.

  • Already screwed over by Verizon in the past, dropped them as soon as my contract ran out, then swore I would never do business with them again.

    I guess I will have that final "nail in the coffin" that pushes me to drop Netflix too. Ah well, it was good while it lasted (11 years). []

  • I love Netflix (Score:5, Insightful)

    by killmenow ( 184444 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:53PM (#38348978)
    I am a long time customer. I love it. Even with the latest mis-steps, I am still a happy customer. Yes, they screwed up. But the service is still totally worth it to me.

    But if Verizon buys them, I'm cancelling. I just cannot imagine any way that they wouldn't completely destroy Netflix's value proposition.
    • Re:I love Netflix (Score:5, Insightful)

      by praxis ( 19962 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @06:59PM (#38349088)

      Not that I don't think you're right, but if you love the service and it's worth it to you then why not wait until they destroy Netflix's value proposition rather than doing it preemptively?

      • Re:I love Netflix (Score:5, Insightful)

        by apcullen ( 2504324 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @07:10PM (#38349252)
        Because the first thing verizon would do is remove the "cancel my service" button that netflix has. You'll have to sit on hold an hour to get your service turned off or even downgraded.
        • Re:I love Netflix (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Sponge Bath ( 413667 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @07:38PM (#38349678)

          first thing verizon would do is remove the "cancel my service" button

          Please someone mod this up. Too many sleaze bag companies use the "make it painful, time consuming and difficult if not impossible to cancel" policy as a way to limit turnover instead of providing good service. That is what turned a planned temporary cancellation of DirecTV into a permanent, bitter grudge to the grave unwillingness to ever do business with them again.

          When Netflix's streaming library started shrinking rapidly (including a disappearing TV series I was halfway through) about the same time as the 60% price hike, at least it was easy to cancel. That left me with enough goodwill that I would consider subscribing again if they ever manage to start growing their streaming content. That would not happen if they became just another Verizon service.

        • by Thing 1 ( 178996 )
          Just change your credit card number; report it as lost or stolen, your bank will do this for free. I had my identity stolen a couple years ago, and had a stupid Best Buy service contract for my phone which when I bought it they said I would get a loaner, then when I tried to use the service they said I couldn't. I kept planning to cancel it, but then when my card# was stolen and I got the replacement card, I just ignored their requests for payment, and am whole. I expect a similar thing is possible with
          • It costs something like $200 to get an attorney to write a letter. How many attorneys letters do you require per year to make your $27 per month LegalShield worthwhile?

            • by Thing 1 ( 178996 )
              I don't want to share too many personal details; I had some debt issues, and I can pay for the service for the rest of my life with the money they saved me. I'm a happy customer, I feel that any additional benefit I get from them is gravy. Other responses have had valid concerns; fortunately, I haven't run across that attorney. To the other responder (AC): if you obtain poor service and feel that an attorney just wants to make your case go away, give corporate a call. They truly care about their custome
    • Me too. I enjoy Netflix and wish them the best. I would love to see the service continue and expand. A Verizon acquisition would be another big nail in the coffin.
    • As lame as "me too" posts are, I'm going to commit one. Though I think Reed Hastings hasn't exactly been a model CEO, I understand why they are taking the steps they take. I don't feel the frustration that many (legitimately) feel over the streaming selection, as I do find lots to keep me entertained and have actually been introduced to genres that I was not "into" previously. I even cancelled my disc subscription yesterday as I finally had to admit, I just don't use it.

      Still, I will watch this very caref
  • I think Reed has earned a generous severance package. People who don't perform well just don't belong at Netfix. []
  • to get a large part of netflix's subscriber base to unsubscribe. That'd be the first thing I do if this happens, to be honest. Yes, netflix has had some hiccups, but nothing too bad considering I pay $9 / month for access to their library anywhere I am. The only way this might be good is if they can get even more TV shows on there or somehow fix the media industry's holdback on getting newer TV shows online faster. Lol that'd be the day.
  • by DanDD ( 1857066 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @07:07PM (#38349212)

    Missteps were mildly annoying, but I never considered cancelling. I _will_ cancel if Verizon acquires Netflix.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Ditto...the very instant it's announced. That's a promise. That's a guarantee. There is not a single contingency anyone is capable of imagining where my business stays with a Verizon-owned Netflix. They might as well cancel it for me.

    • by wytcld ( 179112 )

      Agreed. Netfilx is sometimes brilliant, sometimes bumbling, but delivering real value. Verizon is as close to the definition of evil in a corporation as you can get this side of a few of the big investment banks and mortgage lenders. Look at how Verizon screwed its union workers, despite all-time high profits, while paying its executives ever-more. Verizon's customers, also often screwed. They are on the front line of the upper class's war against the rest of us.

  • Watching movies and videos is an expensive activity. More expensive than most realize. Start a business instead.

    Take it for what it is ... just a monkey brain fart, not an attack on video watchers.
  • I subscribed to Netflix specifically to get streaming, but I was very disappointed in the movies available for streaming. I know - this is probably the fault of the studios more than Netflix - but nonetheless, after only a couple of months, I had watched everything worth watching and I was really digging to find good content. Netflix has taught me that the *number* of movies is only part of the story - because Netflix has far too much worthless crap.

    The technology works fine - I'm not a video/audio snob,

  • So the leadership of Netflix makes some absolutely poor decisions that cause their stock to drop, the next thing that happens is Verizon wants to buy them (greater media consolidation?) and the stocks go up...

    It would be fascinating to see who purchased the stock after ti dropped from their truly amateurish business decision. [] []

    All of it right

  • I love Netflix. It's my only source of Television now. If Verizon buys Netflix I will be totally screwed.

    Not to mention I bet if they buy Netflix the mobile app will be pulled from the market and merged with their "Verizon TV" crap, so anyone not on Verizon will not be able to watch Netflix on their phone anymore.

  • Dear Verizon... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pla ( 258480 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @10:42PM (#38351234) Journal
    I have stayed with Netflix through their recent screwups because they still offer exactly what I want for the price I want, and I don't particularly hate them as a company. And despite what everyone bitches about, my rate hasn't actually changed (except down!) since I originally signed up way back in their early days.

    I do, however, loathe you as a company, with every fiber of my being. If you buy Netflix, I will drop my subscription before the ink dries.

    So please, don't. I would prefer to keep my Netflix subscription. I will not, however, ever do business with Verizon, under any name I recognize as affiliated with them.
  • by MobyDisk ( 75490 ) on Monday December 12, 2011 @10:54PM (#38351300) Homepage

    I don't care if you like Verizon or not, we have to stop content carriers from buying content providers. Comcast+NBC, Verizon+Netflix, etc. It is bad enough that one company provides phone lines + service on those lines, now they are going to provide the whole thing?

    "No Mr. Senator, VerizonFlix services will not be hindered when traveling over competing networks. Here, ask our friend Benjamin [] if he sees any problems with it..."

  • On my last DVD rental return (I don't use the streaming service due to the much lower quality of the stream, no extra features, and the fact that when I did try it the streaming versions were sometimes markedly inferior in content -- one movie, for example, was missing nearly 20 minutes of what was on the rental DVD) Netflix acknowledged my return, but then didn't send out my next DVD for an entire day. When you're on the 1-at-a-time plan, that is a significant hit.

    Their explanation? When I called i

  • As a happy Fios internet customer, a long time Netflix and someone considering becoming a Verizon wireless customer I am very disappointed by the prospect. There is no way Verizon would not star tying in the Netflix service with their own and raising costs and instituting caps. It's worse than that though I think as it would be bad for the entire industry. Netflix was the only streaming service out there with enough weight to start forcing studios to open up to the streaming idea. They were happy to sit
  • This isn't about Verizon wanting to get into the Streaming market, it's about Verizon wanting to kill competition and roll back the clock on online streaming. They want to make it so your choice for video entertainment is once again restricted by which access provider you have. Eventually you'll end up with exactly what we had with cable but for internet access.
  • by DriveDog ( 822962 ) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @10:17AM (#38354652)
    My 10 year old son learned on his own Verizon's business strategies... with Roller Coaster Tycoon. He'd hide the amusement park's exit gate so guests would stay longer and hence spend more, and he'd cut the prices on soft drinks a little and charge for restroom usage. My younger daughter would get involved and check the state of individual guests. They were usually desperately looking for an exit or a restroom, or feeling nauseous, but my son didn't respond to their plight since his short-term profits were increasing. Recent decisions at the USPS regarding next-day delivery WILL impact Netflix's DVD shipments adversely, driving the business even faster to streaming. The best we can hope for if Verizon buys them is that they'll quickly spin off the DVD business, and it will focus on older and commercially less-successful movies. I do expect Verflixon to charge more to stream to "smart" devices (however they decide to define that), and make it difficult to tolerate not subscribing to the extra cost options. Furthermore, they'll obsolete existing Netflix-capable devices (Roku, Wii, etc.) and market their own replacements, "free" with a 24 month contract. Also, resolution will be lower and there'll be pauses for "rebuffering." Don't forget that documentaries about corporate malfeasance, citizen discontent, and popular uprisings will disappear from the catalog. You won't be watching pieces about OWS or anything Michael Moore might think up, but you'll get virtual visits to Ground Zero—Giftshop, that is, with "buy me now" buttons onscreen. Watch for a Verizon-Disney merge soon... Derizney? My son will then be hired to run Derizneyland.
    • In RCT you don't build food courts because guests got lost; so I would build a 9x9 pave with an info booth in the center and make that my food court. Profits like crazy: my guests bought maps guaranteed, then never got lost. They also bought tons of food and drinks. That thing was a cash printing operation.
  • companies from buying competition for the sheer purpose of killing it in order to keep away competition? this is what has seemed to slow down the at&t/t-mobile merger.
  • If Verizon buys Netflix, it's all over with. Verizon will put all kinds of hidden fees and restrictions that it won't be worth having anymore. Good thing there are alternatives in the works like Amazon, EpixHD, HBO GO, Hulu, plug a few others. Why does someone have to ruin a good thing?

MESSAGE ACKNOWLEDGED -- The Pershing II missiles have been launched.