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Netflix, It Might Be Time To Part Ways

Netflix, Netflix, Netflix, where do I even begin? For the longest time, I viewed the platform as the OG of streaming services, but recently it has been nothing but disappointing. Four years ago today, it would have been labeled as my ‘comfort platform,’ but that title has gradually faded away.

Before I delve into how I fell out of love with Netflix, I want to discuss its profound popularity. Netflix was my first taste of the streaming service world. Up until my Netflix subscription, cable was where I consumed all of my television and movie entertainment. I think that as a society, we can all agree that Netflix was a game-changer. It was one of the only services that started to shift many people from cable to online streaming. It offered us both nostalgia and originality, all for the initial price of $8. They created award-winning shows and movies that could only be watched on that platform such as Stranger Things, 13 Reasons Why, The Crown and On My Block, just to name a few. It truly was the it streaming service.

However, my issues with Netflix gradually arose once certain shows and movies began to be removed from the platform. Increasingly over the last few years, Netflix has lost rights to titles that have been a huge part of the service. One of the big ones to strike up controversy amongst subscribers was Friends. The 90s American sitcom was a huge part of the platform, but Netflix sadly had to break ties with it on Dec. 31, 2019. Following this show’s disappearance, Netflix began losing more and more of the shows that its subscribers heavily consumed, including Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill, The Office and Bob’s Burgers.

It’s no surprise that the rise of other streaming services is the main reason for this decline. Once Disney created their personalized streaming service, “Disney+” and HBO created “HBO Max,” Netflix truly got a run for their money. These services not only charge a cheaper monthly fee than Netflix, but have also claimed rights to the titles that Netflix used to have (e.g. Friends and Pretty Little Liars). Disney+ offers a wide range of Disney content such as original Marvel shows, popular movies like Encanto and nostalgic classics. HBO Max provides subscribers with critically acclaimed shows such as Euphoria and Big Little Lies as well as all of the Harry Potter films that one could ever desire. Let’s not forget other streaming services such as Hulu and Amazon Prime, which have also overshadowed Netflix. There has now even been a so-called ‘streaming bundle’ where subscribers can have unlimited access to Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu all for the base price of $13.99. While these bundles give consumers a vast amount of content to choose from for a reasonable price, Netflix offers less variety and charges $15.49 for a standard plan. Please keep in mind that this price continues to increase as time goes on.

While it’s natural for a platform to lose show titles once rights have been given up, it becomes another problem when those titles are not replaced effectively. Netflix specifically has lost a ton of shows but has failed to deliver consistent and good content to refurbish them. Simultaneously, Netflix has been drastically hiking up its prices, so viewers are essentially paying more for less.

In my eyes, the last two years have been very stagnant for the streaming service. As of now, Netflix still has trendy, popular originals on their platform that many people still consume, such as You, Bridgerton, Squid Games, Too Hot to Handle, Outer Banks and Money Heist. With that being said, I don’t think the service has entirely fallen off, but it feels as though we’re getting to that point. For the time being, Netflix will be able to hold onto its mere relevance as they still have some of this popular content left. However, as the years go on and more streaming services come to light, potentially stripping Netflix of their current content as well as offering more reasonable deals, I don’t think they will last that much longer as a top streaming service.

While you’ll still catch me binge-watching the third season of Outer Banks or potentially the second season of Love is Blind upon its release, I sadly don’t anticipate much screen time on my behalf from the platform any other time of the year.

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Leann Taylor is a student at Florida State University who's currently pursuing a double major in Marketing and Advertising. In her free time she loves making jewelry, taking pictures, eating anything sweet, and traveling!
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