Netflix Thinking About Ways To Make Own Punishment Actually Punishment

from the let-us-think-on-it dept

After plenty of people, including the FTC and a judge on the case, noticed that Netflix’s class action settlement for delivering movies slower than promised appeared to be more of a promotion to get people to upgrade their accounts than a real punishment, Netflix has now said it will reconsider its side of the agreement, and see about not automatically enrolling everyone who agrees to the settlement in a higher, more costly, service plan after their one month free upgrade is completed. It seems like this is the type of thing they should have thought about before all of this — and it’s not clear why so much “thinking” needs to go into it now.

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Comments on “Netflix Thinking About Ways To Make Own Punishment Actually Punishment”

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TriZz says:

Re: WHAT?!

Ummmm…why are we (the judicial system) allowing Netflix to decided on their own punishment?!

WTF!? If I go and rob a bank, can I opt to have my hand slapped as opposed to jail time?

Corporations have too much leeway in this world. If they can be held accountable in the same way a human can – then they should be punished as humans are also.

Rob Stevens (user link) says:

Re: Re: WHAT?!

Um, perhaps because it was a mutally agreed upon SETTLEMENT and not a JUDGMENT. If you want to blame anyone, blame the lawyers for the class that let them get off so easy in exchange for a FAT payday.

If you want to gripe about something, gripe about THAT. The only people that got CASH from this settlement that injured CONSUMERS … were the LAWYERS.

RevMike says:

Re: Re: WHAT?!

why are we (the judicial system) allowing Netflix to decided on their own punishment?!

Because this is a settlement negotiation. The plaintiffs can push this all the way through to judgement if they choose, rather than accept the proposal.

WTF!? If I go and rob a bank, can I opt to have my hand slapped as opposed to jail time?

You can ask. And the prosecutor will surely laugh at you and suggest 30 years in prison. Eventually you’ll either complete a trial or agree on 7 years in prison and 5 years probabation or something like that.

Mike Richard (user link) says:

Re: New release hiding

Who cares if they use tactics to increase profits, thats a natural thing for corporations to do. Can you still get new releases? YES! If they didn’t then Netflix would go out of business and none of us would have a movie in our mailbox to look forward to.

I love Netflix. If you think they suck try one of the other services like Blockbuster and you’ll be running back to good ol Netflix in a hurry…

discojohnson says:

No Subject Given

FTA, “Unless the participating consumers canceled after the free month, the company planned to begin automatically charging for the service — a provision that drew a harshly worded objection from the Federal Trade Commission, as well as other parties.” (my own emphasis). my interpretation is that netflix didn’t want to get sued AGAIN. “there’s no such thing as bad PR”…well, if all the PR is bad, then yeah it’ll hurt your bottom line.

Cody says:

vicitims of this BS

so just because I didn’t make my account before Jan 15th 2005 means I am not eligible for a claim? WTF this BS effects me as much as anybody…. what is the point of all this? they are still going to send me my movies slower than ever before, wasn’t that the point of the original claim, .. They should either have to A. Change their advertising slogan from “unlimited rentals”.. or B. send them on time… not pay lawyers ungodly sums of money….

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

I don’t blame Netflix at all; I blame the lawyers representing the class action plaintiffs. Is there any mechanism in place to ensure they are actually working on behalf of their supposed clients?

In this case, obviously, they couldn’t care less about their clients, except as leverage to get excessive legal fees from Netflix.

Could the presiding judge have thrown out this deal as obviously flawed? Or, since the two parties came to an agreement, was he powerless?

TJ says:

Still weak

That is still a weak and fairly promotional punishment, especially for people who since cancelled their service. “You didn’t enjoy the service enough to keep paying for it, so we’ll let you have it back free for one month.” Lame.

An easy and relatively simple to implement settlement might have been that every class member could request a DVD of their choice from NetFlix and get to keep it. As a remaining NetFlix subscriber who would be covered under the class, that would have tangible value to me. Bumping me up to have out one more DVD at a time for one month, meh, not worth the computer programming necessary for the company to implement it.

Overall I like NetFlix, but I’m not usually a high volume renter. On the rare occasion that I do have fast turnaround and see my next selections throttled, it does incremently sour my opinion of the company, and still does despite the fact they now admit to doing it (thanks to lawsuits). I’d be less bothered if the system was sophisticated enough to look at long-term trends and was honest about the a ‘hold’ status, but companies being honest with customers is indeed a rare thing these days.

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