2007.10.13

Another reason I hate DRM

20.32.54 - Mark

I've ranted on DRM before (I may have even started a post like that before), but when it's wasting my money, I tend to get upset. I'm a happy Netflix customer, I've slowed down my watching a lot since I first started but I still like the service. I'd like it more if I could use their watch now feature, but right now I can't. It would be one thing if the software on their end wasn't there yet, but it's not. As Hacking Netflix points out the watch now stuff works just fine on the Mac (I've checked on the Mac, but not the Ubuntu box) It's the fucking DRM that's depriving me use of my Netflix account and the 17 hours of video I could be getting every month.

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2007.05.31

Thank you Al Gore

09.08.09 - Mark

AMC is showing Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea right now, and its one of those movies I had vague memories of but couldn't remember the title. It's an old Scifi flick, and I picked up the movie halfway though, but I've been wanting to see it for a while now, and I was a little disappointed when I saw Netflix didn't have it. turns out that there's only been one DVD release of it and that was a double billing with Fantastic Voyage in 2000. However there's a new version coming out this week, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (Global Warming Edition) comes out June 5th.

I realize the movie deals with a radical global warming, but why on earth would they release any DVD (other than maybe An Inconvenient Truth) as a "Global Warming Edition"? I don't even see anything that remotely resembles mini documentaries on global warming in the otherwise impresive list of special features. I blame the Cult of Al Gore.

Hopefully netflix will buy their share of copies and I can sink my teeth into it.

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2007.01.29

Please Stop Streaming My Video

15.40.52 - Mark

While I'm tolerating YouTube and the like more than I was a few months ago, my lingering hatred of streaming video has reemerged in the last week or so.

What's prompted it has been NetFlix's announcement that they're starting to phase in streaming video to it's customers. A couple months ago after realizing that I've been blowing some serious cash on DVDs at the same time I was getting a serious craving for some older slightly obscure movies I signed up for Netflix.

I haven't really blogged about it since I've got mixed feelings about the service. The selection has been good (certainly satisfying my cravings) and after putting in about 120 ratings I've been getting some truly great results from their recommendation engine, but at the same time the turn around isn't always great (I'm starting to run into throttling issues) and I've been seriously annoyed by skips and freezes caused by scratched disks. However the service has allowed me to rent more and varied films without regrets. I've gone from foreign films to documentaries to cheesy blockbuster comedies, and at $2 a film I can even afford to rent a few stinkers.

So when Netflix announced it was starting to add online video I was a bit excited. Among other things more movies. However I'm not using it. Aside from the fact that they don't support Macs or Linux (I don't have a windows box) its streaming video, and my "broadband" internet is far from high speed. One a very good day pages load quickly and without fuss. One normal days I'm painfully reminded of dialup. On a bad day I feel like I would get a faster connection by using an acoustic coupler with my cell phone to dial up an AOL access point in the middle of Alaska.

While my current state of bandwidth maybe a little off the norm (and maybe a bit exaggerated), I have absolutely no problem letting a download sit in the background until it's finished. I'd rather wait a while and watch a video in one go than have it spontaneously freeze of stutter in the middle of a scene. Furthermore, I'd rather be able to move the video around, from a server, to a laptop, to a DVD, or to my iPod

So please, stop streaming my videos, or at least give me an OS independent download option.

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