General Question

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

What decides if something will be available for instant streaming on Netflix?

Asked by MyNewtBoobs (19026points) February 13th, 2011

Why are some things available for streaming on Netflix and not others? It’s not a simple answer of old or unpopular – Princess Bride isn’t available for streaming ::sob::. So what’s their criteria?

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7 Answers

El_Cadejo's avatar

Ive often wondered the same thing. I have realized for instance that there are no cartoon network series available on netflix streaming, only through DVD. This while annoying at least makes a bit of sense. But things like movies and such, I have no friggin clue.

odd that princess bride isnt available for streaming. I watched it a couple months ago on my wii but it appears to be dvd only now.

lillycoyote's avatar

It is probably more about what kind of licensing and distribution agreements Netflix can negotiate with the distributors, producers, owners, etc. of the film or television show in question and what kind of contractual obligations are already in place for whatever the particular show/film is. I don’t think anyone just “decides.” It’s a complicated industry and a complicated business, in terms of financing, rights and distribution.

klutzaroo's avatar

Princess Bride was up a few months ago and will probably be again. Do not despair! Lol!

El_Cadejo's avatar

@lillycoyote that kind of makes sense, but why allow this company to distribute your film/show on dvd copies but not allow instant streaming? Like I understand this being the reason why certain films/movies arent on netflix in the first place, but I dont get the stream or not part.

I mean honestly, not a bit of it makes sense to me. It makes even less sense when you think about it in a piracy sense. A tangible dvd copy is very easy for one to pirate, but just streaming it over the tv is much harder to pirate unless you want to have a bunch of vhs tapes or in the rare case you have a dvd recorder but thats still a pain and would dissuade most people from doing it.

So why would reason would the distributors, producers, owners, etc have for not wanting this to be allowed?

I just thought about this, what if the Netflix server simply isnt big enough to allow all those movies to be on there at once and streamed without crashing the system? So they cycle movies on and off. I mean I honesty wouldnt imagine a company like netflix would be limited by something like this but it certainly is possible I suppose…..

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

@uberbatman I was with you right up until you accused the entertainment industry of using logic to prevent piracy.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@papayalily BWAHAHA brilliant. How stupid of me to forget something as blatant as that :P

sinscriven's avatar

Netflix is at the mercy of the movie studios in what they have rights to stream.

However lately, Netflix has been making some deals (good or nasty ones depending on your view) that would forbid them from having new movies available for mailing for the first 30 days of a movie being released to increase sales in exchange for greater access to the studio libraries for streaming.

Netflix eventually hopes to go 100% stream as it’s more profitable, costs less, and makes consumers happy with instant availability.

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