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What is up with netflix?

Old 01-05-05, 01:12 PM
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What is up with netflix?

I have been a netflix customer for over a year, never had a problem with getting my movies or having them be in long wait status.

Within the last 3-4 weeks I have noticed that the top 10+ choices in my que are all listed either as short or long wait. This has been going on for a few weeks now, very weird, every one of the top ten I have in que are not available wth?

I am not picking the top new movies either, a few are main titles, but others are just things for my wife or my daughter...

I am seriously considering switching services, I am in Michigan and have never had a problem getting discs fast from netflix but are there any other suggestions that might service the midwest in a timely fashion without all this sudden long wait status junk?

Would be neat too if they carried anything else than netflix, maybe books on cd/videogames/adult too...
Old 01-05-05, 02:11 PM
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I have noticed that too, but most of mine that are in the top 10 are new releases, Napoleon, for example. Most of the time, if it is in "short wait" status and in my #1 position, it is mailed to me. I had one "long wait" mailed to me last week. They have recently opened up in Columbia, which means a one day turnaround (mailed on Monday, in my mailbox on Wednesday), so I cannot complain at all. My guess would be that in opening up new branches, the new releases are in greater demand, and are spread thinner; and if you're picking up more obscure movies, they might not be readily available in your area. I would not think the Columbia location would have a copy of "The Harder They Fall," for example. It would take longer for me to receive it when it was shipped from Atlanta, for example. That is where my hub was before, and it was common for it to take four or five days from the day I sent it until I received my confirmation e-mail. As far as I'm concerned, they've got their process down now.

Anyway, I'll avoid Blockbuster on principle, I don't care what they do. I'm sold on Netflix.

I contacted them about offering DVD-A's a while back, and they said there were no plans to. I would think that if they offered CDs, it would be a license to burn..Maybe DVDs are as well. It seems like too much trouble to me, but I guess I'm not motivated to do it.
Old 01-05-05, 02:36 PM
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Unless you're grandfathered in on some great deal that you can afford to lose, it's in your interest to quit and restart your account from time to time. Upon rejoining your wait times will be much shorter.
Old 01-06-05, 12:19 AM
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Originally Posted by StevePerryFan
I have been a netflix customer for over a year, never had a problem with getting my movies or having them be in long wait status.

Within the last 3-4 weeks I have noticed that the top 10+ choices in my que are all listed either as short or long wait.
Welcome to the Netflix blacklist (of sorts) for renting too many movies. It really blows. Their system tags users who turn over alot of rentals each month and assigns them a low priority on waiting lists. Those that only turn over a few titles each month and new signups have almost everything available in their queue no matter how popular the titles. Not very fair is it? This is why I have opened up a Blockbuster account. I have accounts at both places right now because both places have movies the other doesn't have, but I will drop Netflix in a heartbeat if things get worse, especially now that BB is only $14.99 a month (and that includes two free in-store rentals as well for that price).

Last edited by namlook; 01-06-05 at 01:40 AM.
Old 01-06-05, 04:20 PM
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Now that I've pointed out that, since October 19th, Netflix has delayed 82% of the discs that should normally ship on Tuesdays (vs. 4.4% for any other day), they've decided to delay on every day of the week now, I guess to make up the statistical difference.
Old 01-06-05, 07:13 PM
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My account is cycle billed on the 18th of every month, I think I am just gonna cancel on the 16th and just immediatly return whatever comes in before that cancel date (if anything is even in route).

Yesterday for example they got all 3 of my returns yet today when I checked back on the site NONE shipped (now all 12 items say short or long wait) what a joke... now I have to find other things to watch or que up just to get some of the value out of this last week or so of my account.

Too bad too cuz I liked them right when I joined, 2 day turnaround, never a long wait on older titles, etc etc just nowadays IF the movie is even available I notice its more like a 4 day turnaround if I am lucky and the movie is in to ship.

I even added a few kids flicks like dumbo and such, says long wait, called my dad said add dumbo to your acct, he did and it says available NOW - netflix can bite me...

How are other services like blockbuster and walmart and such?

It really would be neat to find one that does games and movies that has a better rep than companies like gameznflix, I signed up for their free trial (2 week trial) and even after the ENTIRE first week they had not even SHIPPED a single item in my que, yeah right i reallly wanna join a place that sits on my que list for 7 days before even shipping an item? No thanks to them either....

Maybe I will have to break down and do a blockbuster B&M movie pass card thing, altho I HATE blockbuster B&M and I live in a college town so they are NOTORIOUS for not having stock of items, or putting boxes out for titles that are missing or stolen (xbox great example) bought game pass, went in checked shelf for a week straight, none of the games I wanted were in, checked on them and turns out 2 were missing and 1 was stolen, yet their "policy" is to keep the box cover out on the shelf, asked if they planned on replacing the titles and the girl said the one was gone since june so she doubted it...

Ah hell maybe ill just start buying dvds or somethin hehe....

Last edited by StevePerryFan; 01-06-05 at 07:23 PM.
Old 01-07-05, 07:25 AM
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I've only had Netflix for a few months (had it a couple years ago for a while as well) and recently its gotten prety bad. I don't even rent an extreme amount. I usually have the discs for a couple days before returning them. I still have a long delay. I used to blame it on the post office, but I now realize it is netflix.

I returned 1 disc last Friday morning at the post office (Dec. 31). Still hasn't been checked in. Netflix warehouse is 1 hour away!

They received 2 of my other movies on Tuesday. My next discs didn't ship out until Thursday. They are supposed to go out Tuesday, the same day the movies were checked in. They were then noted as "shipping weds".... which changed to "shipping thurs." Makes me nuts.
Old 01-07-05, 10:51 AM
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I am in MI as well, but I don't have the problems you do. My discs are received w/i 2 days and mailed out the same day. I usually get the titles at the top of my queue which consist mainly of new releases.
Old 01-07-05, 01:49 PM
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some good information at this site Hackingnetflix.com
Old 01-07-05, 05:29 PM
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Same here. All of the new releases in my queue are listed with some sort of waiting time. Battle of Algiers has been listed with "Long Wait" for freakin weeks. And they lie about ship times (or maybe they are shipping the discs from different countries or something). I showed two movies as having shipped 1/4 and one of them got here today (1/7) and the other has yet to arrive. I live 1 hour from the hub and regular mail between our cities always arrives overnight. My wife wants me to dump em and I just might if this poor service keeps up.....
Old 01-08-05, 04:26 AM
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I've noticed the same thing with new releases. If I dont get it the first week its out, it just sits there at the top of my queue with a Long Wait for weeks or months at a time.
Problem for me has only been with new releases, all the older titles in my queue are available, just a couple with a short wait.
Old 01-09-05, 10:52 PM
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I'm still getting new releases, but I notice that they're sometimes shipping from alternate centers so it takes quite a while to get to me. For example, this week, I got Harold & Kumar shipped on Tuesday from Tacoma, Washington. It got to me here in Dallas on Saturday.

They also sent The Presidio from Tacoma, though that wasn't a new release.

I'm not sure they could've picked a further away distribution center except for Hawaii (which is where I expect to start getting discs from in the future).
Old 01-10-05, 01:36 PM
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By the way, since I pointed out to Netflix that they're delaying shipping an incredibly large number of discs on Tuesdays vs. the other days of the week, they've started delaying discs on every day.

They've slowed me down so considerably that I'm going to end up getting roughly half the discs I got in previous months despite not changing my viewing/shipping back habits on this end.
Old 01-10-05, 02:04 PM
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It might have something to do with a post-Christmas influx of customers, that they haven't optimized yet. I'm not condoning it by any means, but this is kind of a weird time to hold against them.
I've been with them since May 2001, and overall have been very pleased. Service, in general, has consistently improved, with of course a few bumps.
However, I am trying Blockbuster Online, not because I like them better, but their pricing is better. At Netflix I'm on the old 2-out plan, 2-out, no-max a month, 14.99. When prices went up last year, my price went up. The 2-out plan changed to 2-out, 4-max [which is stupid.] Then when prices went down, my price *didn't* go down. i wrote them, and they said, "we're not changing your price.' Hm..okay. BBO's pricing gives me 1 more disk, 2 in-store rentals of dvd or games [which rent for like 6.50 anyway], for the same price. I'm about 1/3 of the way through a 4-week trial with them. Both BBO and NF have been kinda slow so far, right after the holidays, so after 2 more weeks I'll see who's winning. One more disk for the same price, plus two in-stores, might help counter a slightly slower shipping time [if it is.]
It's kinda sad, because NF really is groundbreaking, and I like sticking with the little guy, but money talks, and it was insult to injury when they raised my price with everyone else, but didn't lower it because I was on an older plan. If they're trying to nudge me out of it, it might be working. And I'm not even a real heavy renter of popular titles, either.
Old 01-10-05, 02:26 PM
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Well, my weird time to hold against them goes back to October 19th when they stopped shipping on Tuesdays almost always (82% of the discs that would've shipped Tuesday). It's not a holiday-exlusive issue, it's just something that's gotten considerably worse since December 19th and worse still since January 1st.

I hope it gets better. I'm going to give them until March 19th to do so, and if it hasn't, I'll quit. Of course, if it gets any worse, it will be cheaper to rent from Blockbuster in-store, which is ridiculously expensive, in my opinion.
Old 01-14-05, 03:29 PM
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I just started having similar problem around Christmas time. Hopefully this will be fixed soon. I just sent off an email complaining about slow turn around time. Will let you guys know what they say. I may need to look into Blockbuster.
Old 01-14-05, 06:19 PM
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Well my Netflix billing starts for the next period on the 19th, I am cancelling on the 17th and just returning anything that is already in route.

I live in East Lansing MI, I have a distribution center located here In East Lansing, when I first joined, I could see on their site they shipped a dvd, id get it the next day or the second day max, id return and bam next day id see it returned on their site next in que on the way.

It was that way for months never an issue, once they dropped prices I started noticing a bit more lag time, they wouldn't ship same day, it would say shipping tomorrow type stuff, suddenly dvds getting to me were/are taking 3-4 days, and returned dvds are taking 2-3 days to show as returned (then instead of shipping next dvd it says shipping tomorrow etc etc).

They say they shipped me 2 movies on the 10th, so far today the 14th still no 2 movies, probably get them tomorrow but man how slow is that considering they are literally in the same CITY as me.

This maybe a mail problem I dunno, BUT I just joined blockbuster online service for 14.99 with 3 out at a time & 2 in store coupons per month, used the first months 2 coupons for xbox games in store (nice cuz they are 6.99 rental fees) and the DAY I joined blockbuster late that night i got the email my first 3 movies shipped, (lucky they too have a lansing mailing center) next day got my discs, funny too cuz I returned one of them that same afternoon WITH the netflix disc (at post office not outgoing mail), blockbuster had it next day and released my next qued item, netflix still hasn't even gotten the dvd back according to their site (that was on the 11th) and its now 7 pm site still shows as dvd out, heck I got that second item in que from blockbuster already IN my hands today!

Given too that blockbuster is cheaper, 14.99 per month vs netflix 17.99, get 3 out like netflix, ALSO get 2 free in store coupons for games or movies, heck Im going blockbuster all the way.

Also interesting side note, almost every one of the top 10 in que at netflix were in short or long wait status, took those same titles into blockbuster, only 1 title shows short wait, and the other 9 are fine and showing as available and 4 of which I have already gotten....

Anyways again it could be the mail, but given that blockbuster is also in lansing here (from mailing center address) and they are faster plus those in store coupons and cheaper, even tho i dont usually support blockbuster on the whole, i gotta say they were the better choice for me at this time.

Netflix rocked for the first 10 months for sure, now they blow.

Bill
Old 01-15-05, 08:42 PM
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I tried the free 2-week deal at both places last month and Blockbuster was faster to ship movies out and check them back out. I'm continued with BB, and canceled NF. I've been pretty happy with their service so far, though most of the movies I've gotten have been anime...
Old 01-16-05, 12:15 PM
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My NF sub just renewed for this month; if I cancel, does my membership end effective immediately, or as of the next anniversary date/charge date?
NF can be quicker with shipment, but sometimes they're not; BB so far seems to be slightly slower, but more consistent, plus you gain a little bit since they send out the next before they recieve the last.
I've got a bunch of anime on my queue as well, and some of them say Long or Very Long wait, but I guess I can jiggle my queue around to deal with it.
Old 01-16-05, 04:11 PM
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So how many would you say you get with 8 out plan then with current problems? 32movies to watch a month if you mail back next day?
Old 01-17-05, 11:14 PM
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Finally got a reply concerning my question of delayed shipping from my que. Here is what they said and my email back to them.

Thanks for your inquiry.

We appreciate your feedback regarding the processing of your mail. Upon viewing your return history you are averaging about 13 movies a month. This is actually a great turnaround and nothing has changed in the average of movies you get each month.

We receive rental returns Monday through Friday, except holidays. We process nearly 100% of returns the same day we receive them. When we check-in a return, an e-mail is automatically and promptly sent to you to let you know that we have received your DVD.

Our goal is to ship you the DVDs listed highest in your Queue. We try to ship you DVDs from the distribution center closest to you so that you get movies quickly. Often, on the same day that we receive a DVD from you, we will ship the next available DVD from your Queue. In certain instances, your next available DVD will not ship until the next business day following our receipt of your returned movie. This can occur, for example, when your top choices are not available to you from your closest distribution center or the number of shipments to be processed by the distribution center on that day has been exceeded. When this happens, your DVD will ship on the next business day and may come from an alternate distribution center.

The processing of your mail will also have to do with having your movie return checked in later in the day. Sometimes it is too late to ship the next movie that same day and unfortunately it processes the next business day. When we ship you another DVD we automatically and promptly send you an e-mail letting you know that it's on the way and telling you the estimated arrival date.

Thank you for your continued support. If you have any further questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

Thanks,
Girlie,
Netflix Customer Service .


My reply:

Thank you for the reply. While I understand that things happen to delay my next movie being sent, my concern was that it was the last 4 movies in a row that had an extra day before they were shipped to me. I follow my que very closely and my movies are routinely listed as returned by 9 am which in the past has been plenty of time to get my next selection out that day. I have been to a number of different sites where people are all having this same issue with the extra day delay that seems to have occurred in the last couple months. I will give you the benefit of the doubt that is will not be a continuing problem.

My biggest concern is that people think that the fast turn-around renters (like myself) have their next movie held by netflix in order to save money on postage by decreasing the number of movies shipped each month. I really hope that this is not the policy of netflix to punish their most loyal and active customers by decreasing their monthly rentals. As I stated before, I will give you the benefit of the doubt that the above is not true and that my rentals will not continue to be delayed. With the recent increased competition for on-line DVD rental business (for a cheaper price) I would think it would be in the best interest of netflix to make customer service and rapid DVD shipments a priority if you can't compete in price.
Thank you for you time.


See what they have to say. I really don't want to have to switch to another service but if they don't really try to improve their service in the face of their increased competition, then I guess I will have to do so.
Old 01-17-05, 11:20 PM
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I've signed up & resigned up with netflix many times. One tip I have for getting new releases is to send your dvd back so that they will be shipping your next dvd on Monday. I would often receive a dvd that was just released on Tuesday because of this. I also think that if you are a new customer they try to satisfy you faster than the older customers. I've noticed that when I would have my account for a few months at a time shipping would slow down, dvds would be on wait, etc. I have been impressed with the faster turnaround from netflix in the last few months since a distribution center opened up within an hour of where I live. I now usually only have dvds in transit for 1-2 days, as opposed to 3-4.
Old 01-19-05, 02:48 PM
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I agree Netflix has gotten slow since December


I wanted to see Friday Night Lights this week but it was on short wait on Tue and now Long wait on Wed



Friday Night Lights, Napolean Dynamite, Garden State, The Village, and Wimbledon are on Long Wait

Napolean is a very long wait.

that is more than half the movies that came out since December and January.


I bet the movies will premiere on Directv before they become available at netflix again.
Old 01-19-05, 03:33 PM
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So no one here is using 8 out plan that can give general sum what they get a month in titles with new slower service?
Old 01-19-05, 03:59 PM
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I have the eight at a time plan, and my service was off 20 discs for December/January vs. my first full month, which would be about 40% fewer discs than previously.

I didn't think it would ever be possible on the eight-at-a-time plan to have long stretches where I have nothing to watch, but it's happening.

Judging from the email response posted on this thread (and I got a similar reply today. Parts of it were word-for-word), it's clear that the low-volume renters have their discs processed first and then customers' outgoing shipments are prioritized by the customer's volume with a limit placed on how many discs are processed in a day (this could be a matter of simple hours in the day, or it could be that Netflix has a set limit on the number of discs they're willing to send in a single day).

What that means is that Netflix has more customers than they have ability to service those customers, so they have to prioritize amongst them. They have chosen to prioritize essentially based on profitability (more profitable customers get better service). We knew for some time that Netflix prioritized new releases based on how many titles a person rented. Now we know that Netflix uses the same method to determine whether a person gets a disc shipped on any given day.

This would probably be why quitting and restarting a month or two later works to get better service and why new customers get better service, these customers don't have a recent history, so they're given the high priority. As a couple of months go by, those customers priority status is reassessed and the service changes accordingly.

Interestingly, I assume that having discs delayed also causes the system to reassess customers. So since the number of rentals I received this month was down considerably, that may cause my service to improve (since, thanks to their delays, I was a more profitable customer than in previous months).

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