Netflix Eliminates User Profiles, Infuriates Customers

Netlfix announced yesterday that they’ll be eliminating the ability to set up separate queues or “profiles” within one account. Some customers, like reader Stephen are hopping mad about it.

Incredible shrinking service. Every single person I know uses Netflix uses profiles. For those out there who don’t, you can create profiles for different people using the same account, and allow those people to maintain their own list of movies. For example, I get two discs at a time from my queue, my wife gets one at a time from hers, but we pay for just one 3-disc at a time account.

I called Netflix to tell them that if they do this, I will cancel service with them – I made it clear to the poor guy that answered the phone I wasn’t going to yell at him, I just wanted to lodge my protest. It seems he’s taken LOTS of such calls. He told me to log into my account, click on the Contact Us link, and go to Suggestions and put the information in there. Apparently that page sends information to the correct people. I certainly hope every Consumerist reader who is a Netflix user does just that. Netflix has been one of the better companies I’ve dealt with, and I believe that if their userbase tells them “no, you are being dumb, stop it”, they just might. This also might be the point where they have realized they have Blockbuster just about beat and are starting to abuse their customers. I hope not, because I’d rather they not let Blockbuster up off the mat.

Here’s the email Neflix sent out, announcing the discontinuation of profiles:

Important News Regarding Netflix Profiles

Dear ,

We wanted to let you know we will be eliminating Profiles, the feature that allowed you to set up separate DVD Queues under one account, effective September 1, 2008.

Each additional Profile Queue will be unavailable after September 1, 2008. Before then, we recommend you consolidate any of your Profile Queues to your main account Queue or print them out.

While it may be disappointing to see Profiles go away, this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.

If you have any questions, please go to http://www.netflix.com/Help?p_faqid=3962 or call us anytime at 1 (888) 638-3549. We apologize for any inconvenience.

- The Netflix Team

The ability to have “his and hers”, or a kids queue, is pretty essential to the Netflix service for some people. However, according to Netflix’s FAQ, they will be emailing people a copy of their queues so they can rebuild their selections. Will this drive you back to the arms of Blockbuster?

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. tedyc03 says:

    Into the arms of Blockbuster, no. Into the arms of BitTorrent? Perhaps.

  2. DavidCopperballs says:

    I don’t understand what they could possibly gain by doing this, but to be honest I don’t have much experience with Netflix. However, I’m moving next Wednesday and was planning to sign up. How much should this affect my decision?

  3. Dakine says:

    I was actually kind of glad to get this email last night. I’ve got movies scattered all over profiles and wanted to consolidate them into the main account profile, but there’s no easy way to do that. You have to manually add them one at a time to other profiles. (i.e. your main profile)

    So, I’m quite pleased. They’ll be merging them for me.

  4. Dakine says:

    @tedyc03:

    I find the torrents too unreliable and certainly too slow. As long as Netflix keeps sending me 8 flicks at a time as fast as possible, for less than the cost of dinner, I’ll remain a customer. Profiles or not.

  5. scooby2 says:

    Seems like the only reason to do this is corporate greed. I am guessing they will start offering additional accounts at discounted rates.

    Profiles were one of the best features Netflix offered. This is a huge mistake they are making.

  6. Propaniac says:

    It’s so infuriating when a company or website says something like, “Removing this feature will help us improve service” without the slightest hint of how customers will be happier in the end with fewer features. I’m pretty sure I’d prefer it if they made up a totally BS justification for the change versus no justification at all.

  7. VitaminH says:

    @Dakine:

    I’m not so sure they’ll be consolidating them for you…the way that email read to me is that YOU need to consolidate, as they’re just going to delete any additional profiles.

  8. Who really cares? This isn’t a big deal. Some people will bitch and moan about anything. It isn’t like they’re raising prices or going out of business.
    Whatever.

  9. TheSpatulaOfLove says:

    @tedyc03:

    So, where do you think all those movies on BitTorrent are coming from?

  10. fostina1 says:

    i dont understand, cant he just move his wifes movies to every third place in his que. it would take like 5 minutes.

  11. mwdavis says:

    Netflix remains the best entertainment value around. This is hardly “abusing the customer” as Stephen alleges.

  12. brianala says:

    Wow, this totally sucks. I just sent in my polite letter of protest. I would seriously consider cancelling my account over this. It’s an awesome feature that can’t be costing them that much to implement. A decision like this just serves to piss off customers and reduce the value of membership. I hope they change their mind.

  13. Nogard13 says:

    This is a big deal, to me at least. My wife and I share an account. We each get two movies at a time and have two different queues. If I send back a movie, I get one from my queue, and the same for her. With one queue, we’ll have to actively manage it so that each time we send back a movie, we have to log into the queue and make sure that either my movie or her movie (depending on who’s mailing in) is at the top of the queue.

    What good could possibly come from eliminating profiles?

  14. janine says:

    “I hope not, because I’d rather they not let Blockbuster up off the mat.”

    I’m a Netflix user and all, but I don’t see who it benefits to have fewer companies around. Competition = good. No?

  15. kmt06002 says:

    @Terd_Ferguson: It is a big deal. Three people in a house? Three separate lists. No one worries about when their next flick will arrive.

    Netflix is forsaking service and convenience without offering much by way of how this will improve service. Probably because it wont.

  16. byrdclaw says:

    I had no clue this feature even existed. Now I’m really bummed it’s going away. Too long has my wife controlled the netflix queue! The profiles option would have been great, then we could fight over who gets the 2 DVD picks.

    I won’t be cancelling btw. I have netflix setup with my media center streaming to my Xbox 360. Can’t beat being able to watch movies and TV shows online for free to my heart’s content.

  17. Nogard13 says:

    It’s not as easy as putting your wife’s movie every third movie in the queue. What if she sends her movie back and gets one of yours in the mail? Everyone would have to actively manage their queue, which is probably what they want (more site traffic).

  18. angrychicken says:

    I had no idea that you could even do this with Netflix. I wish I knew because I would have started to use it.

  19. TeraGram says:

    This is a big deal.

    My 7 year old daughter has a profile which she is allowed to view, add & edit as she sees fit. Some times, she keeps movies for days and days.

    I think Netflix believes I’ll open a new account for her.

    They’re wrong.

    We’ll be leaving Netflix if they carry through on this decision.

  20. byrdclaw says:

    @byrdclaw: suppose I shouldn’t say free… maybe legally would be a better word.

  21. darkrose says:

    I’ve been a Netflix subscriber for 3 years. I’ve never used the profiles. I just arrange my queue so my kid gets every 3rd or so movie. It’s not a big deal.

  22. CorwinThersites says:

    I’m a 5+ year subscriber to Netflix and I’ve always been very satisfied; but this loss of feature will drive me to look elsewhere for video entertainment. Don’t know if it will be Blockbuster, but Apple TV is a possiblity.

  23. MonkeyMonk says:

    This is really bad news for me. We’ve used profiles since they introduced them (one for films, one that manages the TV series we’re currently watching, and a third for our son). I thought it was one of Netflix’s best features and really helped in not having to micromanage your queues.

    I wish Netflix was more upfront about WHY they were discontinuing the service. “. . .this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.” isn’t really cutting it for me.

    I do think this is worth bitching moaning about. This is exactly the type of change that angry users can get them to reconsider (like eBay’s decision to shut down Half.com a few years back).

  24. Ein2015 says:

    How is this going to improve the Netflix website?

  25. @brianala: and sending in a polite letter of protest is a good thing. If they get enough polite ones, you never know, they may reinstate this feature.

    But people shouldn’t be a drama queen like Stephen. He’s an idiot.

  26. BoomerFive says:

    As it was said already, they of course are hoping that you open multiple accounts. This has nothing to do with customer service, how can it? I don’t even use netflix and this makes me mad.

  27. TamiBB says:

    Wow, I just renewed my Netflix subscription this week. I was going to increase my subscription and let my daughter use her separate queue to order titles of her own. Moot point now.

  28. Hauler says:

    @Dakine: Then you’re using the wrong torrent sites. I don’t know your connection speed, but if downloading a torrent of a movie in 40 minutes is slower than receiving a DVD through the mail I’d like to meet your postman.

    All things considered though this is a pretty shitty thing for Netflix to do. Basically it’ll be a crap shoot everytime you receive your movies. This definitely will have an impact on “families” moreso than a single person.

  29. oyvader says:

    After I got married, I cancelled my account and set up a profile on my wife’s. Having to merge our lists would be a major pain, and probably put us over the limit.

    Also, juggling both of our DVDs in one queue would be a pain. Bleah.

  30. Skankingmike says:

    I actuality don’t mind blockbuster. never had any problems with them, and I like being able to just goto the store and get a new movie.

    But i don’t’ see how this is such a bad thing for people…

  31. chiieddy says:

    My husband and I use our profiles to keep our queues separate. I would consider leaving Netflix due to this because he utilizes his queue more than I do mine. Not only that, but I can see this have a major negative impact on customers with children who limit maturity levels on those queues. In addition, their FAQ seems to indicate you will NOT be able to set up separate accounts for people in your household. WTF?

  32. MMD says:

    Brilliant plan, Netflix!

    A comment from hackingnetflix.com:

    “In an economy where people are starting to cut back on discretionary spending such as, let’s say, DVD rentals, let’s *cut back* on service to make our product less attractive to thousands of people! That way, when they quit our program, it will be less painful for them to lose our service!”

    So maybe Netflix is just helping people be fiscally responsible? Until they actually state how this change improves service, that’s what I’m going to have to believe…

  33. HIV 2 Elway says:

    @Dakine: What does that kind of account run you? We’ve been thinking of turning off the cable and signing up for a Netflix account. Anyone?

  34. BeastMD says:

    This is the dumbest thing I have ever seen.

  35. afrix says:

    The writing on the wall is pretty clear. They will suddenly (SURPRISE!) move to the satellite radio model, which is additional accounts at the same address for a reduced price.

    Same model as ReplayTV used, and I believe also what Tivo currently uses.

    The end result will be charging extra for the profiles feature.

    Yes, this is corporate greed.

    Actually, it’s nothing but crack dealing. Sell it cheap or give it away at first, and once you’re hooked (and you know you have no control over your addiction, right?) charge up the wazoo for the same thing.

  36. glitterpig says:

    That’s funny; the multiple profiles was the feature that had finally made up my mind to switch to NetFlix – last week. Just was waiting to finish my Blockbuster movies first – now I’m glad I didn’t bother.

    My guess is that too many people were gaming the system – I don’t remember how, but I know you can do something with the profiles to force them to send you movies that they wouldn’t otherwise. Still, it sucks for the 90% of the people who were using them legitimately.

  37. el_smurfo says:

    Sounds like they rewrote their website and left that feature out. It’s very strange because my wife and I were considering consolidating our queues yesterday and dropping our service to one DVD. It’s a PIA to do it manually, so this is just the shove we needed to start sending Netflix LESS money. Thanks Netflix!

  38. Huh…I didn’t even know that Netflix had this service to begin with. My wife and I just have separate Netflix accounts, always have.

  39. Dakine says:

    @Hauler:

    Torrents are unreliable. You don’t know what you’re getting. Could be perfect, or could be a chinese version shot with a vidcam in a noisy theatre. Could be missing half the movie. Could be a completely different movie. Could be not a movie at all.

    Also, I actually use my computer for work every day, and I run alot of heavy overhead software, upload several hundred gigs worth of data daily, and fooling with some torrent site that takes attention and bandwidth away from all that is not an option for me. At least not when things like Netflix exist and it’s totally avoidable.

    I look for better deals on stuff all the time and Netflix is no exception. The day a better deal comes along, I’m all over it. But 8 DVDs every three days for $49 bucks is still top dog.

  40. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    This is not good, no matter how you spin it. Not bad enough to cancel but maybe enough to never upgrade past one-at-a-time unlimited.

    I used to split profiles when we had three-at-a-time and two-at-a-time because my wife and I have very different tastes in movies. If we upgrade our subscription again, I would like to have the option to use two profiles.

    I have a buddy too that splits his own queue between movies and TV so he doesn’t end up with 20 episodes of Scrubs while Robocop waits around.

  41. Dakine says:

    @HIV 2 Elway:

    I run their maximum account. But i think they have plans as cheap as $16 a month or something.

  42. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    @Dakine: $4.99 for one-at-a-time, two per month. $8.99 for one-at-a-time, unlimited (which is what I’m using.)

  43. stacye says:

    @Dakine: Uhm, you did see the part in the email where it said YOU must move your movies into one queue or print them out, right?

    I was telling someone yesterday how cool the separate queues were. I guess Netflix isn’t so cool anymore :(.

    While this change does make me angry, I doubt it’s enough to get me to cancel.

  44. crabbyman6 says:

    This sucks, I can’t imagine that this feature was costing them anything. My wife and I dealt without this feature with Blockbuster and for a while with Netflix. While its not life altering or anything, its a royal pain to have to micromanage your queue so that each person gets their choice of movie. I guess, like some said before, they’re hoping you’ll open another account at some slight discount for the same household, not likely!

  45. DiscoRaj says:

    Bah! I had it setup perfectly with 3 profiles. One for me with 2 discs, one for mother 1 disc, one for sister 1 disc. All suggestions and ratings for couple years GONE? BAH! To get the 3 profiles separately it will cost an extra $7.98 per month! Plus the pain of manually rebuilding the queues and re-rating, suggestions etc. Not a good decision. I have gamefly as well and I have been thinking of joining a service that offers games and movies. Maybe time….?

  46. MonkeyMonk says:

    Everyone who’s mad about this could stage protest by churning their account for a month.

  47. frari489 says:

    meh, this kind of behaviour is not surprising from Netflix.

    I canceled Netflix years ago when they started throttling my account.

  48. Bladefist says:

    @HIV 2 Elway: I wouldn’t do that. Their instant watch movies are older then me. I was really excited about that feature, and so far I’ve found 2 movies I would actually watch.

  49. deapinside says:

    What is really sad is the use of the following: “this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers”. This is an utter BS.

    I can’t understand, however, why Netflix is considered a ‘good’ company. I’m sure I’m not the only one who joined only to learn after providing credit card details that Mac OS X is not supported for instant video. I have double checked the site after that, they never mention it anywhere, even in a fine print.

  50. pgillen says:

    Seriously, can we not have our movies on the same list? I don’t get it.
    I’ve used Netflix for a while now and my wife and I have never needed this function.
    @DiscoRaj – Now using profiles while still living at home with the folks, I can definitely see that as a major plus.

    But if you’re married, just share the dang que.

  51. Dakine says:

    @stacye:

    Yeah, i just re-read the email. Kind of a hassle, but it can be done. Highlight the entire extra queue, copy, paste in a text file, convert to plain text to get rid of the hyperlinks and formatting stuff, and then start copying them into the search box and adding them to the main profile.

    Would be nice if Netflix would put up a “Consolidate Profiles” button or something at least. Wouldn’t be hard for them to script up.

  52. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    @MonkeyMonk: That’s not a bad idea actually.

  53. Shaneniganz says:

    The loss of separate profiles really doesnt bother me, but I can see where for some having to juggle/arrange their queue so that everyone who used to have a separate profile to be able to get their movies when they wanted/in order/etc. would be a big pain. The thing that concerns me is does this signal the start of a great company going down the tubes? I have been using Netflix since 2002, and have been a very satisfied customer. With a very limited selection of physical movie rental stores in our area (We used to have Blockbuster, but several years ago there was a robbery and execution style killing of 2 employees and 2 customers in one of the local branches-they have shut down all branches in our county. Yes, they caught the people and yes, they got the death penalty!) that charge outrageous rental and late fees, plus the fact that the turn around for us is actually one day since the clearinghouse is only an hour and a half away. (If I mail them first thing in the am here, I have my next in queue the next day in my mail box). We also really like the unlimited on demand feature as well, are they going to scale back on that as well?

  54. MonkeyMonk says:

    I called customer service to lodge my friendly complaint and was told they were discontinuing the service because less than 1% of their user base used the profiles feature (I’m not sure how much I believe this). I’m guessing there an ulterior motive here:

    1) They’re trying to get people to open multiple accounts.
    2) If the 1% number of profile users is true I’m guessing this number is predominantly made up of power users who actually cost Netflix money so they don’t care about losing them. Maybe they’re even trying to drive them to Blockbuster as a money-losing trojan horse. :)
    3) Some technical glitch related to an upcoming web redesign.

    The customer service rep (who, btw, was quite friendly and who also claimed to be disappointed about the loss of profiles) also told me that the word given to the reps was that the change was final.

  55. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    @Terd_Ferguson: Unless this becomes something you have to pay for come September in which case it is like they’re raising prices.

    It seems odd that they would drop this feature unless it was in anticipation of another change. They’re getting rid of profiles because they’re introducing feature X to replace it and X probably won’t be free.

  56. Jesse says:

    I doubt this will hurt Netflix too much since Blockbuster is trying to regain focus on their store sales. Also, Total Access isn’t the deal it used to be and their selection isn’t as expansive.

    I really liked Netflix, but continue with Blockbuster since I’m locked into a pretty good plan that would cost a new user double what I’m paying.

  57. Dakine says:

    I wish they would do away with the whole Rating / Recommendations junk. That is a huge waste.

  58. Dakine says:

    Hey, at least Netflix doesn’t have an ETF. I’m stuck with Tivo for 2 more years on 2 boxes because of their stupid contract.

  59. FreemanB says:

    I’ve never used the profiles either. I can understand people who used them getting upset, but I wonder what percentage of their actual customer base actually took advantage of them. If only a small percentage of their overall customer base used them, then perhaps they decided it wasn’t cost effective to account for it in future upgrades, or something along those lines.

    Since Blockbuster doesn’t offer this service either, canceling Netflix entirely seems a bit extreme. You won’t get the profiles anywhere else either, and you’ll just end up with a crappier service instead. If you must protest, I would suggest canceling for one month while making sure they know why you canceled. If they don’t relent by that point, chances are they never will. Then you can decide based on current offerings what you would like to do.

  60. mrkniceguy says:

    I have been using Netflix for years. I stopped using the multiple profiles a long time ago. The problem arose when I wanted to watch a movie that my wife wanted to watch. We both put it in our queue and before you knew it, there were two of the same movies at home, or one right after the other. I won’t miss this “feature” and I will continue to love Netflix. Blockbuster is not an option.

    However, I’m still waiting for Netflix to work on my Xbox 360. If Blockbuster gave me streaming content to the 360 I would think long and hard about that.

  61. pcj says:

    We used profiles a lot too – my wife will have a movie at home for weeks, and can just turn it around and get something else she wants to watch. I turn my movies around quickly, and know I’ll get what I want to watch – plus I add TV series, and know I’ll get the next disc each time I send one back.

    Probably not an account killer, but the big deal for me is how they handled this – no explanation, no warning, no assistance to migrate – Netflix went from being a fluffy happy easy to work with company, and into a selfish, profit margin watching corporation. May as well use Blockbuster, for all the difference it makes now. I always stuck with Netflix because I *liked* them and appreciated their customer service, and now they’ve screwed that good karma up.

  62. Shaftoe says:

    I fall into the disapointed ring. The feature was perfect for us being wife kid and dad. We never had to worry about what film was in the queue.
    I for one intend to bitch about it.

  63. Walter Sobchek says:

    I’m done with Netflix as of now. Honestly, I just don’t watch DVD’s anymore, between iTunes and BT, there’s no point. Just $30 a month that can be spent, unfortunatley, on gas. I’ve had the same 5 movies for like 5 months, and that’s not being a smart consumer, as far as I can tell.

  64. Ben Popken says:

    I don’t understand why they would do this.

  65. frari489 says:

    @pcj: “Netflix went from being a fluffy happy easy to work with company, and into a selfish, profit margin watching corporation.”

    The’ve always been selfish and profit driven.

    Just ask anyone they have throttled in the past. Unlimited movies/mailed the next day my ass, bunch of liars if you ask me.

  66. The Reviewer says:

    @Dakine: @Dakine:

    Dakine I am sorry but they are deleting queues, not moving them to the main one, read the email.

  67. Vicky says:

    I’m a Netflix user and this doesn’t infuriate me in the least. It’s snarky to say, but I think I’d be more upset if my husband and I couldn’t agree on rentals to such an extent that we required a third party to moderate who gets what.

  68. The Reviewer says:

    There is another option besides netflix, and blockbuster. There is intelliflix, they rent porn too!

    [www.intelliflix.com]

  69. I’m not sure what I think about this. For one thing, subaccount holders can’t watch instantly, just the account owner (me). This is a sticking point with my son, who uses my login/password to do this. OTOH, separate queues were REALLY nice to have.

    I started with Netflix because HBO was showing the same crap over and over again, and all the good series were getting cancelled, taking two years between seasons, etc. I might need to see what DirecTV is offering nowadays and reassess.

  70. cupcake_kate says:

    @fostina1: Then when they send you the 3rd and 5th place movies in the list instead of 1 and 2 they have messed the whole thing up.

  71. wring says:

    lol i wasn’t even aware of this feature.

  72. Landru says:

    The end of the consumer-friendly Netflix.

    They want multiple accounts from the same household. Or they want to start charging for additional users.

    Outsourced customer service is most likely next.

    It was nice while it lasted.

  73. The Reviewer says:

    Here is the suggestion link for netflix.

    [www.netflix.com]

  74. Dakine says:

    @Walter Sobchek:

    I have really wanted to love iTunes for years now, but I just can’t. Their movies are $4 bucks a pop, (for HD) that you must finish watching in 24 hours once you’ve started it. And they still have no subscription based plan for music which is just plain greedy.

    If I still used Windows I would have kept my Napster subscrip. It was priceless. It’s the only thing I really miss. But not even that can make me ever go back to windows. So until iTunes comes up with a better plan than the wallet-rape they currently have, I’ll simply do without.

  75. The Reviewer says:

    Further research shows that intelliflix allows you to have multiple queues.

  76. EndlessMike says:

    @BurnsyNY: Depends. If you have someone you were planning on sharing the account with, it may make Netflix less useful to you, but if you’re going solo, it won’t make a difference. I only have one profile, so this change doesn’t affect me, but I can see why people would like it.

  77. GilloD says:

    My wife and I use this a lot. She’s been using Netflix for thesis research. So while I have ZERO interest in Pre-Wall German cinema, she can have her fill and I can get my weirdo French art films with no hassle. Before we’d get 1 Battlestar Galactica and 2 weirdo German movies and then the German flicks would sit around and I’d only have 1 disc and then I’d get all 3 and. And.

    We could put out for 2 accounts but this is a major pain in the ass and an enormous step back for a company who has otherwise done a great job.

  78. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    @mrkniceguy: It’s a lot easier to say “hey, I added this movie to my queue today” than to try and manage which movies come first.

  79. Dyscord says:

    I honestly don’t see the big deal over this. My wife and I have a netflix account and we actually TALK about what movies we want to see. If there’s a new movie one of us wants to see, we go to the queue and make adjustments. This isn’t earth shattering and obviously isn’t going to make a difference to us. Just adjust your queues as needed

  80. The Reviewer says:

    Intelliflix will charge you 9.99 for a 3 dvd at a time account if you pay for a whole year up front, that is a whole damn lot cheaper than netflix.

  81. samson says:

    If your local library offers DVD then they offer the ability to reserve them over the internet and will notify you by phone or email. I am in two library systems while my coworker uses netflix. She pays for a service and i just pay for gas. My late fees are rare because I try to be responsible. The best way to get movies for free. If you WAIT and are not in a hurry to see them even better. There is no que for the movie and you can check out many at a time and renew at your leisure. My wife is watching the third season of lost now on dvd. I am waiting for the third season of weeds and the first season of entourage.

    I love the library.

  82. Dakine says:

    @The Reviewer:

    Checked it out, but intelliflix doesn’t have near the selection of netflix or blockbuster. Maybe in a couple years?

    There’s also Amazon Unbox, which is through Tivo.

  83. jst07 says:

    Always sucks to see features go. I don’t use netflix at the moment, nor did I use profiles when I was with them, so I don’t really care.

  84. zentex says:

    @wring: I’m starting to see a trend where not many people knew about this feature…perhaps they need more ‘internal’ advertising.

  85. sroemerm says:

    @MonkeyMonk: I called and got the same jive. “This is a feature which very few of our customers actually use.”

    What? So screw em? This is extraordinarily lame.

  86. The Reviewer says:

    @Dakine: It says they have 60,000 titles I know netflix has 100,000 but how many of those are a night with Kenny G and other DVD’s I am never going to rent.

  87. bspreston says:

    To all of those people commenting that this isn’t a big deal, the rating and recommendation portion of the Netflix site is a big part of what makes it better than Blockbuster. Now the entire rating and recommendation system doesn’t mean ANYTHING. Unless everyone in your household feels EXACTLY the same way about any movie. I’m sorry… but my movie tastes are a lot different than my 2 year old!!!!

  88. RevRagnarok says:

    Everybody who says “No big deal” or “make (other profile) every third” obviously doesn’t do TV series and movies at the same time. Or ever had it where the first item in the queue is randomly skipped. The order I receive them and the order I return them are rarely equal (since a TV show DVD is usually kept 3-4x longer than a movie).

    As for canceling cable, I have a friend who did that years ago with the justification, “If it’s any good it’ll be on DVD anyway.” I think he’s right, and when he found out about the profiles, fell in love. He’s on the 8-plan which is still tons cheaper than cable.

    Anyway, this was my suggestion via their website:

    “In regards to canceling profiles, you have to be kidding. As a customer for nearly SEVEN years, and a shareholder in your company, I am not happy at all with this decision.

    Like many others, I have two profiles – one for movies, and one for TV shows. That way I am guaranteed not to have all three discs of HBO’s John Adams at home at once, but ensures that when I return one of them, the next comes without me manipulating my queues.

    I sure hope that you will replace it with something similar to fix my new-found problem! Not just replace it, but have some automated way of moving the data from my secondary queue so I don’t have to waste my time re-searching for every DVD and queuing it up. If I were to take the time to do that, why wouldn’t I simply do that with on a competitor’s website?

    You may want to peruse [www.hackingnetflix.com] when you get a chance also. “

  89. OtelloMarburger says:

    I cancelled my Netflix account last night because of their termination
    of Profiles. I made sure to call them up to tell them explicitly that
    was the reason. They said “We’re gathering a list. We might be able to
    bring it back.” I recommend everyone who uses the feature contact them.

  90. ViperBorg says:

    @sroemerm: From what I’ve seen in the comments and other areas of the internet, I beg to differ. It seems a LOT of Netflix’s customers use this feature quite a bit.

  91. TVGenius says:

    Seems like this will destroy recommendations too, since Mom’s chick flicks, Dad’s war movies and the kid’s animated movies are going to make for some wack suggestions.

  92. rjgnyc says:

    @afrix: Why is it greed versus making things more effective on their end at a higher gain than the loss they would get in customers who would leave due to losing the feature?

    For all the recent articles about companies not being transparent when changing what they provide, I think that while it sucks that they’re removing a feature some people clearly like, they’re pretty awesome to not only tell everyone but tell everyone over two months in advance.

    If, come after Sept 1st, they do something like offer “family” or “group” plans which do provide multiple queues and such, good for them for realizing a way to make a profit on something that is a non-essential-to-society thing provided.

  93. fan_of_homer says:

    I have been a Netflix subscriber for almost 8 years. I would say this is on the order of a minor annoyance, and I would feel better if Netflix would just come out and say how this “will improve the Netflix website” for me. But I was on Netflix for years without this feature and did just fine.

    Assuming you have only 2 accounts, you make sure you put the movies for one account on the top of the queue and the movies for the other account on the bottom of the queue in reverse order (the movie you want most on the bottom). If you watch a movie from the first account, you mail it back and do nothing. If you watch a movie from the 2nd account, you mail it back and sometime the next day, go onto your queue and scroll to the bottom. Hit the “move to the top of my queue” button and you are done.

    Yes, it is a small pain, but shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes. Your spouse/child can still manage their own movies, you just have to have them put theirs on the bottom.

  94. ZalikaLamia says:

    Before profiles:

    My husband maxed out the queue with his movie selections and a few
    for the kids and I had to beg him to reduce them so I could add one
    disc. Forget adding a series.

    After profiles:

    I had my own queue of over 300 titles, he had his maxed out, and the
    kids had 200 titles. No one ever fought about it.

    We are considering canceling our service if this change goes through
    as planned. It’s not as easy as consolidating the queues for us,
    unless they allow more items to be added to the main queue.

  95. mbz32190 says:

    I never knew of this feature either. Everyone in my family has had their movies on one que

  96. RevRagnarok says:

    @zentex: I was thinking that too – seeing all the comments of “wow, that’s a great idea.” There’s a “protest” idea for ya – everybody make multiple profiles so >1% (a number I don’t believe) have them! :)

  97. RvLeshrac says:

    @ViperBorg:

    100% of the complaints will be from people using the feature. Of course the people who AREN’T using the feature aren’t represented. Using the number of complaints as a guide is like standing up at a meeting and asking the people who aren’t there to let you know.

  98. Hauler says:

    @Dakine: In regards to your first paragraph, like I said before you’re using the wrong torrent sites. There are plenty of private sites out there that pride themselves on providing quality releases and there are sites like http://www.VCDQuality.com, there’s nothing illegal there and no downloads, that show screenshots and allow others to rate the quality of the release.

    If you know what you’re doing then it’s incredibly easy to download movies left and right. Personally though I prefer actually owning the disk which is why I don’t download that often and don’t use services like Netflix.

    Since you’re unable or unwilling, whichever it may be that’s fine, to use torrents though it’s kind of a moot point.

  99. samson says:

    Isn’t the service they are offering free to them. I mean they already have an apllication setup and going people use. To disable it makes people mad and some go away. So Netflix drops a sunk cost feature that loses them money.

    It my local gas station stops people from paying with credit cards customers go away but the gas station also does not have to pay the credit card cost also. A service that is not offered that saves cost and drops revenue.

    Netflix drops a feature that does not cost them money and drops revenue.

    This is a great of example that our society is statified. The person that made this decision probably went to Harvard

  100. Dakine says:

    @rjgnyc:

    Spot on.

    When our company makes changes (I make the changes that the big guys call for), we don’t ask our members / users if they approve of it first and base the decision on that, we simply change it. We make changes all the time.

    When software companies make changes (upgrades / fixes) they don’t ask for an end-user majority approval first, they just do it. Netflix is no different.

  101. AliyahLimpet says:

    >I’m a Netflix user and this doesn’t infuriate me in the least. It’s snarky
    to say, but I think I’d be more upset if my husband and I couldn’t agree on
    rentals to such an extent that we required a third party to moderate who
    gets what.

    You are missing the point. For people who love movies and use this feature,
    this is like Facebook telling you that you can’t have your own account any
    more and you now have to share it with your Wife and Kids. Sure I like my
    wife’s friends and my kid’s friends, but that doesn’t mean that I want to
    wade through their messages to get to mine. This netflix feature is kind of
    like you’re own personal space. I have 200+ movies/tv shows in my queue.
    My wife wants to see some, but she is completely uninterested in about 70%.

  102. @mrkniceguy: The Netflix system warns you when you’re about to put a movie in your queue that somebody else has already put in theirs.

  103. samson says:

    [en.wikipedia.org]

    guy went to cambridge

    I was trying to see how many us presidents went to cambridge when i went here

    [www.britannica.com]

    I am not paying to access your site.

  104. booticon says:

    Pretty lame, but heh, I didn’t even know you could *do* this. That would have come in handy, to have say, a profile for actual films, and one for like, music discs.

    Oh well.

  105. khiltd says:

    Oh no, now your darling Logan and Dakota won’t be able to order their Wiggles videos on their own, costing you precious seconds of your hectic stroller shopping and wine drinking day as you are suddenly forced to coordinate your movie rentals by talking to one another. What an outrage.

  106. silver-spork says:

    Combining the queues will also royally screw up their Recommendation program, since my husband and I have radically different tastes.

    This is probably the push that will get us to cancel our account, because managing one queue is not worth the $ or hassle.

  107. AlinaLabadoozie says:

    The letter I sent to their suggestion box:

    Dear Netflix,

    This obviously won’t be the first note on the topic. But please consider
    re-thinking your recent decision to eliminate profiles and the distinct
    queues that go with them.

    1. How will my girlfriend log in separately to manage movies? I don’t want
    her to use my password. Aside from folks in my position, think about
    families with accounts who’ve set up profiles for their children – kids will
    need access to the account’s master password, and parents will lose the
    ability to separately rate content they’re comfortable with their kids
    queueing up.

    2. For those (like me) sharing an account with another that has separate
    tastes, how will this improve our joint ability to manage content? One of
    us will have to micro-manage the combined queue to ensure we’re getting a
    balance of movies.

    3. Won’t this also ruin the reccommendation logic that you use to show me
    movies I might like? With only one queue, the weight of my girlfriends’
    movies will be the same as mine when it comes to recommendations. I take my
    queue pretty seriously, and the recommendations you’ve provided have been
    good ones. Why mess that up by factoring my girlfriend’s (and here I’ll use
    the word “questionable”) taste in movies?

    4. And what about the time she’s spent rating movies in a profile that will
    be eliminated?
    Why would you not provide a more elegant way for existing customers with
    profiles to merge queues and/or migrate to separate accounts?

    5. Why do this now, when other forms of media dispersal (set-top boxes,
    internet services, competitors like Blockbuster) are looking for any opening
    to gain customer share?

    6. You mention in your email that this will help improve service for all
    customers. In what ways, specifically? This seems like a downgrade for
    some, and status-quo for others. With some terrible PR mixed in.

    I’m a very disappointed customer today, but I hold out hope you will rescind
    this decision. If not, I’ll be moving on to a service that meets the needs
    you originally identified and served well.

    Sincerely,

    a customer since 2006.

  108. tubby says:

    i am canceling service the second they do this. i don’t have time to sit there and micromanage my queue to make sure I’m not stuck with two of my girlfriend’s movies for the weekend. i’ll cancel and go to blockbuster in a heartbeat, at least then i can exchange in store.

  109. wring says:

    @zentex: i think it just creates more clutter. i’m already having a hard time with my queue. srsly you can only take out 3 movies max at a time, why make it more complicated by having more than 1 list? maybe they’re shutting down the feature because not a lot of people are using it.

  110. @afrix:

    I think Afrix completely nailed why they are doing this:

    The writing on the wall is pretty clear. They will suddenly (SURPRISE!) move to the satellite radio model, which is additional accounts at the same address for a reduced price.

    I disagree with Netflix’s change, but what bothers me is that this is the first time I’ve seen the company openly treat its customers like idiots. Telling us removing this feature is going “improve the Netflix website” is insulting.

    And if Afrix is correct, which I suspect he is, then not only is it insulting but it’s the first time Netflix has just openly lied to its customer base.

    Netflix, I thought you were different from other companies…

  111. asten77 says:

    Erm, they have a blog:

    [blog.netflix.com]

  112. GameVoid says:

    Some readers, like GameVoid, had never even heard of the feature.

  113. Also, I love how people in the comments who (clearly) don’t have Netflix are saying “big deal who cares” but every commenter that has Netflix is either extremely unhappy or not very pleased.

  114. theblackdog says:

    This sucks. I had a plan that when the BF moved in I would up my Netflix to 4 (or maybe 6) at a time and split the queue into two profiles so that he could get the movies he wants to see when he wants them. Now he might have to pay more to get a separate acct.

  115. Red_Eye says:

    Nice nothing like stripping service to eliminate having to buy new servers. Good going netflix. Screw off.

  116. PinkBox says:

    I’ve been a Netflix user for years, and never used the profiles. Never looked into them, so didn’t know anything about them.

    My guy and I share the same queue with no problems.

  117. Zsofia says:

    For those of you who like to send a snail-mail letter (I do) the Netflix corporate address is:

    100 Winchester Circle
    Los Gatos, GA 95032

  118. BenjaminCachimbear says:

    Here is the email/suggestion I made in response to this terrible news:
    NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
    Please Please Please Don’t do this! This is a major part of my Netflix
    experience! It lets me keep my wife’s musicals out of my movies! At least
    EXPLAIN why?!?!?! Don’t just give us an ETD(Estimated time of Death for the
    noobs; I added this in brackets for the consumerist post) for one of the
    best parts of the service! If something better is on the horizon, please let
    us know, but if not PLEASE rethink the destruction of my “Movies I’ll Love”
    it knows what I like, and that needs to stay separate from the TERRIBLE
    MUSICALS! PLEASE I BEG OF YOU! THE MUSICALS!!!!!

    Sincerely,

    Zach

  119. @Dakine: You are using some lame public tracker lol

  120. tubby says:

    did they remove the ability to contact via email? it only has a phone option in the help center now.

  121. ThinkerTDM says:

    I use DvdAvenue. I have not any problems so far, and I have been using them for about 3 years.

  122. AustinTXProgrammer says:

    I have been with Netflix since December of 1999. I’m not going to cancel over this, but I did write and ask them to reconsider.

  123. ChrisNF says:

    @Propaniac: Yes, I don’t even care about Netflix, but the language of the email is what is upsetting. They are obviously doing this to make money — forcing people to open multiple accounts. Yet they lie and say it’s going to improve service in a mystery way. I wish they would just come out with the truth and respect the customer. We aren’t idiots.

  124. sroemerm says:

    @ViperBorg: I agree. I dont buy the line that no body uses this feature.

    Having separate Netflix queues is one of the keys to a happy marriage. I’m not excited about having to share my sci-fi/action queue with my wife’s period romance and drama queue.

    I predict marital strife all over the country because of this, and Netflix will be to blame.

  125. arniec says:

    I wonder if Consumerist itself had anything to do with this (or was it Lifehacker)… When posting the way to get hard to get movies is make them tops of a secondary queue to get priority, if a bunch of people gamed the system then they’d have to change the system.

  126. mattpr says:

    I enjoy the threats to switch to a service that is more expensive and has poorer customer service just because Netflix cost you an extra 15 seconds when you update your queue.

  127. timmus says:

    While it may be disappointing to see Profiles go away, this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.

    Isn’t this doublespeak?

  128. Geekybiker says:

    The only possible reason to eliminate this is to introduce a way to make you pay for the same feature. Expect to see a “Add 1 disc a month and a profile for only $5.99 to your existing account.”

  129. blackmage439 says:

    “I certainly hope every Consumerist reader who is a Netflix user does just that.”

    I’m on a single-disc plan with just myself. I never even heard of “profiles” before now. This change has no effect on me whatsoever. I’m still a happy Netflix user. I will not be complaining.

    Not every one has the same plan as you, and not everyone has the same concerns as you.

  130. 3drage says:

    Complaint sent.

  131. chaitea says:

    The nicest feature about the profiles is that the movies come addressed to the person they are intended for. My 80 year old mother was in no danger of opening my gay romantic comedies instead of her dog movies and documentaries.

    This puts a serious crimp in my already stressed time. I’m the sole care-giver for my mom, who’s (hopefully) recovering from a broken neck, and I barely have time to pee, let alone custom sort my DVD list so that she’s always got something to distract her and I get a movie to decompress to every other day.

    No, it’s not the end of the world. But for many, it’s the needless addition of more steps to produce a lesser result that we had always been offered before.

  132. sega8800 says:

    oh god, i can’t get my movie 2 at a time anymore because maybe my wife’s queue will get in the way. stop crying. who cares, it’s not like they are charging you more. i hate people complain about this kind of none issue. without the profile, all you need to do is add 2 of your’s, add 1 of your wife’s, then two of your’s again and 1 of your wife’s again and so on. how hard can it be? errrr… also, i am using blockbuster with the 1 a time unlimited rental and exchange. it was 9.99 but then they raise the price to 12 dollar now. but still, i am happy with it because i get to exchange it in store instead of waiting movies in the line. not all the movies are available, but i can always catch some old tv shows that i want to watch.

  133. __Ken__ says:

    I wrote to them letting them know that I never really wanted to try iTunes movie rentals, but they just gave me a really strong reason to. I can get 54 new releases a year for the same price I’m paying them now.

    Imagine, getting a new release, within minutes and not waiting until it ships from some other place across the continent. I might even buy an apple tv.

    Funny thing is, under help they mention that the ability to delete a profile is coming soon – I didn’t think it meant ALL profiles. Maybe the programmer(s) misread that?

    I’m not sure if this was intended, but the letter they sent me was read like this. “Ken, Fuck You! – Netflix”

    If they do decide to delete profiles my account will be too.

  134. Snookie says:

    This is a minor inconvenience for us, having only 2 profiles, but I can live with it. It will just mean more manipulation of the queues.

    My big beef with Netflix is that, twice this past month, the next available film in my queue wasn’t sent, but the second one down on the list was. They could give me no reason for the error, either. Has this happened to anyone else?

  135. I never cared to use this feature. It seemed more trouble than it was worth.

  136. failurate says:

    @edicius: I am pretty sure you and your wife are who they are hoping all their other customers become.

    Their goal is obviously to get multiple accounts per household, so they can double bill.
    Would not surprise me if the cable companies jump on this concept… separate accounts for each outlet in your house.

  137. failurate says:

    @sega8800: That would work if you sent back movies in same order.
    She watches a movie, you still haven’t watched yours, she sends hers back, she gets one of yours. Now you have to send back both of your movies to get hers, she’s pissed and all your food has a weird metallic taste.

  138. tiatrack says:

    Netflix has gotten ridiculously slow with mailing us movies recently, and/or mailing them from locations 3,000 miles away for common movies which then take a week to get here (just move on in my queue instead). This is the final reason for me to cancel. My husband and I love the 2 queue thing, and we don’t have the time to always be updating one queue to make sure the right movie is on top. Byebye Netflix!

  139. malvones says:

    I continually have bad experiences with netflix. Movies sometimes take days to arrive, half my queue is inexplicably on a “long wait” category (who are these mysterious users ahead of me in line?), and so many DVDs I receive are in terrible condition.. I’ve just about had it with them.

    I’ve always expected them to start tweaking their business model once they became arrogant enough. The next move I’m expecting from them is prioritizing deliveries of high demand DVDs for higher paying members.

  140. TeraGram says:

    Netflix Phone Number: 1-877-638-3549

  141. jeffc666 says:

    Between me, my wife, and our kids we have 3 profiles. I can not imagine using NetFlix without this. This ended up being just the catalyst I needed to cancel.

  142. Mr. Cynical says:

    I e-mailed them. Said I’d cancel my subscription if they removed profiles. If enough customers send that e-mail maybe they’ll think twice.

  143. I’ve been a Netflix user since day one, have one of the higher service levels, bought a Roku box on day one, am a very big fan. They have gotten thousands of dollars of business from me, and I’ve recruited at least three of other users for them through gift subscriptions. I think that qualifies me as a loyal and valuable customer, perhaps the type of user Netflix would like to retain.

    All that said, I’m getting ready to shitcan Netflix because of this sort of horrid attitude towards its customers. First, they very shadily started the user throttling, and only came clean when they had no other choice. Now, they tell me: “While it may be disappointing to see this feature go away, this change will help us to continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers“. WTF? If you’re going to insult my intelligence like that, and change service without any explanation, I don’t know if you should continue to get my business, as I’m not sure what your next plan to “improve” my service will take away from me. Sure, I like the profile feature, but its removal is a minor annoyance. If Netflix just told me “We need to increase our profits, and as such will be making this free feature a premium service in a few months” it wouldn’t be as much of a deal, because at least they wouldn’t be jerking us around with transparent spin.

    Netflix is a great service, but there are alternatives, both legal and illegal. They need to be reminded of that.

  144. Lin-Z [linguist on duty] says:

    I just barely set up a secondary profile so my boyfriend could watch all the horror movies he wanted. This is a bummer but I guess I can live without it =/

  145. oregongal says:

    Letter sent and I agree that I also thought they were different than other companies. Better by many standards, not perfect, but better. I will not ever use Blockbuster and our local rental places just don’t have the selections like NetFlix. Crap, why did they have to go mess up the system? Improving the website is a lame reason. Try again.

  146. Matthew_Maurice says:

    @sega8800: You’re single and live alone, aren’t you?

    This is definitely NOT a non-issue, but granted it’s not the end of the world either. It’s totally understandable that users will be upset when out of the blue Netflix just made their service MUCH less attractive/useful for a small, but non-negligible, segment of their client base. The utility of queues is obvious to anyone who looked into it, particularly if you have a SO, roommate, wildly varied tastes and care about recommendations, watch tv series on DVD, and/or desire to balance your movie genres. All that combined with their crass anouncement and its faintly offensive PR BS is sure to set people off.

  147. xhalarin says:

    This feature is extremely useful for families and maintaining separate ratings. Loosing it would be very upsetting.

    I agree completely with twophrasebark’s comment about this being the first time Netflix has ever done anything so idiotic to alienate their customer base… and if that was their goal they have succeeded.

  148. sashazur says:

    I am sure Netflix is doing this to force people with profiles to buy extra accounts. But except for the people who used profiles, I don’t think this is a big deal – I never knew about profiles until I read this post, and my partner and I have managed so far to jointly manage our single queue just fine (Him: “This movie is about exploding space robots so it must be yours”. Me: “This movie is about tormented french lovers so it must be yours”).

  149. Raignn says:

    Sad? Yes. Pissed? Not really.

    I still heart Netflix. Not even hell freezing over could get me to switch to Blockbuster.

    The reason some people haven’t heard of it, is if you are a newer Netflix customer this feature wasn’t even available to you in the first place.

  150. bfos7215 says:

    Certainly NetFlix is doing this to limit the people who are taking advantage of the feature to split a single membership between friends or family in different households. I can’t think of a very good reason other than this to use this feature anyways since re-ordering movies in a single queue is so easy anyways.

  151. StudioGeek says:

    This is a horrible decision by Netflix. I don’t hare how low the usage penetration is to their audience base – a very important part of their business is families and married couples. Those who use the profiles know how valuable they are. Those that don’t use them, would like it if they did.

    Reading some of the comments about people adjusting the queues for every 3rd movie is ridiculous. I have a 3 DVD account, one goes to my wife’s queue which she maintains and sends back in as often as she wants and I keep my 2 movies out of my main queue. She has 50 titles in her queue, I have over 300. Try merging that and see how confusing it gets.

  152. dlzbub says:

    Looks like a good old-fashioned email carpet-bombing campaign is in order here:

    Leslie Kilgore – VP Marketing: lkilgore@netflix.com
    Reed Hastings – President: reed.hastings@netflix.com
    publicrelations@netflix.com

  153. synergy says:

    Son of a bitch!!!! My husband and I maintain different profiles so he can get his wrestling stuff in peace and I can get my Jem & the Holograms toons in peace. ARGH!

  154. lizk says:

    This is a big deal to me, too. I’ll probably cancel my service and move to something online, like Amazon Unbox.

  155. Solo says:

    “While it may be disappointing to see Profiles go away, this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.”

    From the blog:
    Too many members found the feature difficult to understand and cumbersome, having to consistently log in and out of the website.

    I don’t know what to say. This is so insulting and wrong. Perhaps the key word is “too many”, as in too expensive to field the support calls from confused customers?

    And from the usability standpoint, this makes no sense either. If the feature is cumbersome, then you implemented it wrong. Just make is less cumbersome to use.

    I suspect the real reason is unstated. And we, the dumb and confused consumers, are fed heaping scoops of spin (aka BS)

  156. gotzenn says:

    This is such a royal pain in the @**! I spent 12 minutes on hold with Netflix yesterday, before finally getting a chance to argue with them. The girl on the other end of the line was nice, even going so far as to say she’d manually re-enter the 350+ titles from my wife’s queue to the main profile on-at-a-time, and I told her that was ridiculous – there should be a simple mechanism in place to merge the profiles. Here’s the “User Comment” letter I just sent Netflix. Perhaps if we bombard them with complaints, they’ll reconsider.

    “Your recent decision to eliminate user profiles has alienated many of your core users. I have two profiles, each of which have over 250 titles in the queue. While a single queue would be a major drawback to your service, you’ve made a bad decision even worse by not giving users a means of transferring or “merging” their queues. A call to your customer service center yesterday confirmed this is the case (after a 12-minute hold time, likely from other users asking the exact same question). I’m not about to manually add over 350+ titles from the queue that will be deleted, back to my primary profile. As a website database developer, I know for a fact how easy a “feature” like that would be to develop, and I IMPLORE you to do so before you enact this ludicrous idea of removing a heavily-used feature. If not, I’ll cancel the Netflix account I’ve had for YEARS, and promptly switch to Blockbuster or a video download service such as iTunes that’s more in-tune with their customers’ needs. I really hope you take this under advisement, as I’ve spent quite a but of time browsing through blogs and forums today, and it’s obvious I’m not the only person that has a MAJOR problem with this decision!!”

  157. digital_sextant says:

    For all the commenters who are saying either:

    a) I don’t use this feature so I don’t care.
    or
    b) It’s not a big deal to manage one queue.

    I’ll save a link to this comment for when they take away your favorite feature. This issue represents the company’s attitude toward the customer base as a whole, which has just dropped considerably in my opinion.

  158. mattpr says:

    @digital_sextant:

    You are under no obligation to utilize Netflix if you don’t like their service, much like I am under no obligation to have sympathy for people who are POd at this change. This is a service that is a want, not a need. I’m paying for it.

    I have been completely, 100% satisfied with Netflix over the last 3 years. This change will not affect me one bit…I am VOLUNTARILY paying for this service as a luxury, not a need…and someone in Muncie, Indiana who now has to go through the UNGODLY task of spending more time to organize her HOME DELIVERED DVDs doesn’t strike me as an affront to humanity that would ordinarily elicit my sympathies.

    So tell me again why I should care?

  159. mthrndr says:

    I don’t use profiles. In fact, I’ve never even heard of them, since I just skip over all that mess and go right to my queue. If my wife wants a movie, I just put it on the list. Having separate profiles doesn’t add much value for customers like me, and I’m sure the upkeep is probably pretty high (they have to keep the tracking and inventory systems in line with member profiles, to ensure that they don’t send too many movies; when to send movies, who gets the next movie, etc).

  160. synergy says:

    @mrkniceguy: That’s odd. Because whenever you go to the DVD’s page, it tells you who on your friends already has it on their queue. I’ve avoided adding something to my queue that my husband already had by noticing that. We’ve yet to end up with the same item at the house at the same time. And that’s pretty good considering we get 5 at a time.

  161. Trai_Dep says:

    I loved NetFlix but cancelled ages ago when they were caught throttling titles. Well, actually I busted them throttling titles, sent them my spreadsheet results (yeah, I like film a lot) and they denied it. Vehemently. Then read a month later that they were sued for, and lost a class-action for: title throttling.
    The lie bugged me as much as their scam.

    But if I was with them, I’d cancel over this. Because it’s so obviously customer-hostile, whose feature-gouging benefits only benefit some Netflix bean counter’s idea of “optimization”.
    Same issue: sneaky, underhanded, retroactive revocation of benefits we signed up for says they don’t care.

  162. quieterhue says:

    I lodged my complaint as soon as I received their email this morning. I really, really hope they don’t go through with this, as the separate profiles are essential to my boyfriend and I not killing each other over movies. However, even if they DO, they should offer a better way to execute the transition…as opposed to, print out your list and re-enter the movies into your primary queue–how ghetto is that?

  163. parad0x360 says:

    @fostina1: exactly, thats what my girlfriend and I do…its not that hard.

  164. @mattpr: If you don’t care, then why comment? Seriously, what goes through your head when you see an article about some product or service, don’t use said product or service, and then decide that your commentary on the article will somehow be enlightening? We see this for everything. Problem with Bank of America? “I don’t use them.” Problem with some credit card company? “Just don’t use credit cards”. Of what possible utility could such commentary/advice be to the people who are interested in the article? Perhaps I’m misguided, but I think the purpose of comments is to share insights about the issue at hand, or maybe to provide some wit. We all know that these products aren’t necessities, we just don’t like companies taking away features without sensible explanation. Who gives a shit if you don’t use these features?

  165. camman68 says:

    @fostina1: That would work if Netflix sent movies in the order they are queued.

  166. ? graffiksguru says:

    Meh, don’t care, never used the profile feature anyways. And to all those people threatening to leave netflix, where are you going to go? Blockbuster Online?
    Yeah, good luck with that..

  167. synergy says:

    I just read a FAQ about the elimination of Profiles. Within their answer they’re a little schizophrenic. They say:

    Your additional Profile Queues will be eliminated. If you would like to keep a copy of each Profile Queue we recommend that you print them out

    Prior to Profiles going away, we will also email you a copy of your Profile Queues

  168. Speak says:

    @BLANDspace: I too prefer to reserve movies from the library. It’s free, and the New York Public Library system actually has an excellent collection of DVDs. It’s not so good, however, for watching TV series, as there’s a one-week limit on DVDs other library patrons have put on reserve. And then there are times when the library gods decide you will receive all of your requested movies at the same time–I’ll be busy this next week trying to get through five movies before they’re all due.

  169. I love the dump bin at WallyWorld. $5 and I own the DVD.

  170. LucyInTheSky says:

    whatever. i still heart netflix.

  171. synergy says:

    @Corporate-Shill: Some of us have no plan to see a movie more than once and don’t want the clutter of a bunch of DVDs we’ll never see again or the bother of having of dispose of them, sell them, whatever.

  172. xhalarin says:

    I just put my account on hold. If you’re care about this you should do the same. This is terrible customer service and they need to feel the results.

  173. lotusflwr says:

    My husband and I have only had Netflix for about 8 months but we’ve been using the profiles feature from the get-go. When we first signed up, I didn’t see a need for more than 1 movie out at a time, until my husband showed me we could have separate queues.

    I had him bump us up to the 3-out-at-a-time plan immediately, so we each had our own queue and a third shared queue.

    It’s nice because right now neither of us is hellbent to watch our DVDs just so the other can get something in the queue.

    In fact, when we got Gamefly and signed up for 2-games-at-a-time so we could each have a game out, I was sad that they didn’t offer separate profiles like Netflix. As it is, we have to conference when one of us is sending back a game so we can ensure the queue has several selections appropriate for whomever is returning a game — god forbid we both send back games at the same time. Nothing more disappointing than winding up with 2 of my husbands long epic games and nothing for me to play. :(

    Now, if Netflix does away with profiles, I’m either going back to 1 at a time or cancel it all together. It’s very disappointing, especially when they won’t give any good reason. I can’t for the life of me figure out what the downside of having multiple profiles is… I just know trying to maintain one queue for multiple people is annoying and I’m not going to pay for the “privilege”.

  174. tankertodd says:

    This really, really sucks. I don’t want my wife’s and kid’s movies touching mine. I don’t want my wife seeing my freaky twisted taste in movies. Weird is having “Angel Heart” in the queue next to “The Magic School Bus.” Twisted, man.

    Netflix is probably trying to do some IT work and they found that the profiles thing is a pretty complex feature. I can’t imagine what they plan to offer in the future is worth losing profiles though. Hopefully a competitor will rise up with a different service. I’ve switched from Netflix to Blockbuster and back again. I can switch one more time.

  175. psyop63b says:

    LOL, I just signed up for their trial offer yesterday. What poor timing.

  176. gravedi66er says:

    Sorry Netflix, what is probably your attempt to force my wife and I to open separate accounts will result in our cancelling your service if you choose to carry out your plans. You give no reason as to how this will “help us to continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.” It doesn’t help, it inconveniences me. And I am not in the habit of giving a company money to inconvenience me.

  177. GarthAegyptus says:

    > This is infuriating to claim a reduction in service as an improvement.
    >
    > Wasn’t that a Sean Connery movie? Wrong is Right!!!
    >
    > Sigh.
    >
    > Mitch

  178. gravedi66er says:

    And for all you idiots who offer the solution of “just put two of your choices then two of you wifes choices and so on”. It doesn’t work that way jackasses. What if I watch my two movies as soon as I them get and send them back the next day and my wife likes to keep hers for weeks at a time? As soon as I send my two back, two more come for my wife and now she has four DVDs and I have to wait for her to watch and return before I get more. It’s ridiculous. Charge me an extra dollar a month if there is some sort of cost associated with it (and I don’t see how there is as the queues are automated). Who the fuck comes up with these idiotic business decisions?

  179. sean77 says:

    @twophrasebark: I have netflix. Been a netflix subscriber since 2004. I couldn’t care less that this feature is going away. My wife and I just share a queue.

  180. liquidsgi says:

    Not very happy about this decision. My husband and I use this feature all of the time. It keeps our queue separate and allows us to control them separately. I sent my email of protest….

  181. @gravedi66er: You’ve answered your own question. “Who the fuck comes up with these idiotic business decisions?” The suits who know they can count on the very same idiots you identify to justify, defend, or ineffectively work around their business decisions, that’s who.

    When there’s a chorus of these insipid, unhelpful “I don’t even use this, so who cares?” / “Use this inferior alternative” / “You’re overreacting” replies, it’s a lot easier for the Netflix marketing assholes to ignore the very reasonable objections raised by their other customers.

  182. Angryrider says:

    The Library can be your friend instead of waiting so long to download a movie. Just go into your local branch or on the net and reserve. Is that so hard?
    God forbid you should walk a few blocks or take an half an hour off your weekend.

  183. mattpr says:

    @AtomicPlayboy:

    I was replying to a poster who claimed that I should care even though this announcement does not affect me (a Netflix user who does not utilize user profiles) at all. I find this attitude preposterous, and I was responding directly to that.

  184. trujunglist says:

    @Dakine:

    I’m not sure how torrents would be slower than Netflix really. Netflix takes at least a 2 day turn around if you’re incredibly lucky. Assuming you have something other than dialup or a very slow or capped connection, then you should be getting your torrents much faster than the Netflix turnaround. If your connection is anything like mine, which is just a basic cable option, then you should be able to download entire movies in less than an hour.
    Just sayin’…

  185. ganzhimself says:

    Well, I guess I have one more reason to cancel NetFlix now… Thanks for making my decision to cancel even easier!

  186. Mary says:

    Nobody I know in real life even knew this feature existed, so honestly, I doubt such a large percentage of users actually did utilize it. And how do we know Netflix isn’t working on something that will solve the same issues without being as clunky and annoying as I found the multiple profiles?

    I still used them, but I didn’t like the way it worked at all. The only reason I hadn’t gone back down to one queue was because I was putting off the annoyance of rebuilding 250ish selections onto the other list. Which took me a total of fifteen-twenty minutes this morning when I finally got around to it.

    Honestly, jumping ship over this is so much over-reaction I can hardly believe it’s happening. I was a member of Netflix long before this feature and I’ll remain a member long after.

    One thing bugs you and you bug out? What kind of crappy loyalty are we offering companies these days? How do they have any incentive to be nice to us at all when they aren’t even allowed to make mistakes without everybody screaming for their heads on platters? No wonder blockbuster threw it’s hands in the air and decided to screw their customers and just watch their own bottom line.

  187. Mary says:

    @digital_sextant: My favorite feature is that I can rent movies without going to the video store, and that their selection is very large and varied.

    I don’t see that going away until the company sinks entirely. You see, I’ve been a member so long that I can recall when all the things people get ticked off about weren’t even possibilities. The service worked fine for me then, it works fine for me now.

  188. RonDiaz says:

    I love this feature. Profile for me, profile for wife, profile for TV shows. Makes for much easier for management. VERY disappointed to see this go. If they offer discounted second accounts, I probably will partake I suppose.

  189. I had just bought the roku player because of profiles, the day after the player comes in they kill profiles. So I will be canceling my netflix service and doing a chargeback if necessary for both the player and the last two months of Netflix service. I was assured by netflix that the roku player would work with profiles, so that I could buy multiple roku players for the household. So I bought three roku players and signed up for the 4-at a time plan at netflix. I bought the roku players and there was like a month wait to get them – so two months of netflix service to just find out the day after I get the player they are discontinuing the profile ability. So yeah, sorry netflix, you won’t get another cent from me.

  190. tweemo says:

    Im addition to complaining to Netflix, it may help to send suggenstions to Blockbuster. Tell them as obviously as possible that you are a Netflix customer who will join Blockbuster if they start offering profiles.

  191. ludwigk says:

    @Vicky: It’s not only snarky, it’s short sighted. You just don’t get it. With separate queues, you don’t have to agree on titles. You can get your movies, and your husband can get his.

    Also, with separate queues, you getting your next movie is not contingent upon your husband’s viewing patterns. if he takes a few days to get around to his DVDs, you can watch yours and get your next flick.

    At no point do either of you get ‘stuck’ with only movies from a particular queue, and both queues can function independently.

    You can also define separate queues based on genre. For instance, you can set up a 1-disc queue, and load it up with Buffy the Vampire DVD’s, and the rest of your discs for a movies queue. Lets say you get through 1 buffy disc a week, but you watch movies every day. By separating queues, you’re rapidly getting new movies to watch, and you have your disc worth of Buffy. You don’t end up with all movies, or too much buffy to watch.

    It’s just a better system, but you’re just not organized enough to benefit from it.

  192. Doug Nelson says:

    My guess is that they’re preparing to offer additional accounts at a discount. That way you can have a 3-disk account and a separate 1-disk account (hopefully for much less than that would cost now).

  193. sean77 says:

    @obamaramallama: that’s just dumb. The Roku players use a separate queue altogether. Your instant queue. There’s no need for separate profiles with it. You select what you want to watch.. you don’t have to watch them in order or anything.

  194. mr.dandy says:

    My wife and I have never used the profiles, it isn’t hard to figure out which movies are whose. If people can’t tell whose are whose, (meaning you have similar tastes) then one list is probably all you need anyway. We just make sure to arrange the queue so that our picks alternate in a fair way. I could see needing it with kids (especially if they’re greedy and try to skip their picks ahead all the time) but otherwise I don’t see the big deal.

  195. mr.dandy says:

    @ludwigk: I disagree that profiles are the only way to achieve that system, though it might have made it simpler. Whether you use profiles or not, the disc you send back is the one that gets replaced. If you want to get a new “Buffy” when you send an old one back, just make sure a Buffy is at the top of your queue when you return it. Same goes if it’s a “guy” or “girl” flick, kid’s movie, etc.

  196. sean77 says:

    the funniest thing about this thread is how empty these threats are. “Oooh, i’m totally cancelling my netflix now!” Please. No you’re not.. and every time you falsely claim “I’m never shopping here again!” you weaken the threat.

    Every time we redesigned our website, we’d get bombarded with email from people who are “never coming back”. Our numbers have yet to reflect the supposed mass defections.

  197. coren says:

    Into the arms of worse service for a higher price that accuses you of trying to defraud them? I think not – Blockbuster doesn’t have profiles either. Screw them.

  198. TeraGram says:

    AngryRider said: The Library can be your friend instead of waiting so long to download a movie. Just go into your local branch or on the net and reserve. Is that so hard?
    God forbid you should walk a few blocks or take an half an hour off your weekend.

    Lucky, lucky you to have such an option. Because I have a seven year old daughter, we use our library extensively. However, our town’s population is about 13K. The total number of DVDs on my library’s shelves is oh about 200. Seriously. They have probably 1,000 VHS tapes, maybe more. But DVDs? Not so much.

    I’ve tried watching their VHS tapes because they actually had some titles I was interested in. To a one, they were stretched, burnt out, and in case, spliced with inappropriate material. After six problematic tapes, I’ve decided they’re not worth the effort.

    Our library is part of a larger system, so I may go to those libraries (which are 13 to well over 100 miles away) OR I may request materials electronically… for a fee.

    I requested a music CD from the band “Panic at the Disco” over a month ago. I’m still 9 down on the wait queue. I don’t even put movies on my request list. The waits are ridiculously extreme.

    So, as I said, lucky, lucky you to have such an option.

  199. TeraGram says:

    Sean77 said: the funniest thing about this thread is how empty these threats are. “Oooh, i’m totally cancelling my netflix now!” Please. No you’re not..

    Yes, yes I am.

    I don’t make idle threats.

    If Netflix carries through on this and does not provide me with the option to port the one profile to a new account (recs, reviews, list & all) I WILL kill our account. Period.

  200. mojo6771 says:

    This is one of the worst decisions by a innovative company

  201. Meathamper says:

    What next? Gamefly doing that to all the gamers who are to poor to afford video games (like me)? Seriously, our only salvation to Comcast On-Demand and other crappy VOD services is now lowering itself down a notch.

  202. pezjohnson says:

    Not everyone uses profiles. I actually like getting movies and enjoy them with others in my family. If I need to get a movie right away, I redbox it, many times with a freebie code.

    I will say that it was silly of them to say they were going to improve service by dropping it.

    Drop the profiles.

  203. navstar says:

    Called Netflix today. The very friendly CSR said that less than 3% of members use Profiles and that profile is “holding them back” from implementing new features.

    But she mentioned that she will forward along my wishes to keep Profiles.

    So…. maybe they will come up with something better? I’m really disappointed. But if you are a member and want to keep Profiles, please call Netflix and let them know!

  204. Keptwench says:

    @Dakine:
    No, they -aren’t- merging the profiles. All profiles other than the main
    one will be purged. :p

  205. hmk says:

    We seriously just started using profiles YESTERDAY, after years of having one f’d up consolidated queue (boy our recommendations are WAY off). So hearing this news when we finally decide to use an amazing feature is really upsetting.

    I know several people who will either switch to Blockbuster or switch to pirating movies as punishment to Netflix. Netflix will lose either way.

    This blows. Thanks for nothing, Netflix! Until now I held you in high regard!

  206. mikala says:

    I just called and sent in a Comment. I will cancel if this service is removed. It’s a treat I can live without.

  207. GugliehnoEunomia says:

    I think the people that are brushing this off as a bunch of lazy
    whiners don’t understand that technology is supposed to afford us more
    efficient lives. Requiring me to micromanage my queue each time my
    wife or I mail a movie back isn’t making my life easier.

    This isn’t a “brain surgeon IQ required to develop” feature for
    Netflix, money can be the only motivating factor. The argument that
    only 1% of people are using it so no big deal doesn’t seem to make
    sense. Profiles aren’t hurting the 99% of people not using it so why
    get rid of it?

    Hard to say what we’ll do but right now I’m thinking of switching to
    two 1-at-a-time plans rather than our 4-at-a-time plan. Take that
    Netflix. Haha.

  208. j-yo says:

    In the big scheme of life, how is this even an issue?

  209. @sean77 – No, it is not “just dumb”. I was told by netflix that the roku player would be able to use the profile ability w/instant queue and be able to have these multiple profiles for different people in the household, so I could have my profile w/instant queued movies, my wife with hers, and my daughter with hers. I was specifically told this and THAT is why I bought the roku players. I was lied to by netflix and I will NOT grace them with another cent.

    As for your other response, that those who say they will not be cancelling the service, I point you to this picture: [tinyurl.com]

    I do not support companies that lie to its customers.

  210. @j-yo: In the big scheme of life, why visit Consumerist? And why bother to comment?

  211. Trai_Dep says:

    @sean77: Well, Netflix guy, I left. And instead of telling my friends how AWEsome you were, I now regale them with how NetFlix had to get sued into admitting that they game loyal customers’ queues and lie when asked.
    I also spread my story on consumer-oriented blogs filled with potentially ideal (upscale, internet-savvy, urbane) customers. Some of whom may go, “Eww. I don’t like companies that have to lose in court to admit their consumer-unfriendly shenanigans.”

    BTW, the three customers I brought in for you? Gone now. And telling THEIR friends the amusing story of how NetFlix had to be sued before admitting they throttle titles.

    And, your Q4 net subscriber additions fell 31% to 451K. Your churn ticked up from 3.9% to 4.1%. So, someone’s following thru on their threats to quit. If you haven’t noticed it, Wall Street has.

    This new wrinkle doesn’t lend itself to an amusing story. But the trend – NetFlix changes their terms on whim whenever it benefits them and expects customers to suck it up – is pretty simple to explain. As is the impossibility of contacting anyone with problems at NetFlix unless script monkeys count.

    A shame: you guys had a clever concept going and initially were great. Too bad.

  212. Trai_Dep says:

    @TeraGram: I’d insist on one new free account. Otherwise I’m sure they’d be happy to take twice your money for the same basic service. :)

  213. ogunther says:

    My wife and I had been debating on what to do with our Netflix account since we had not been watching very many movies lately (our setup was exactly like Stephen’s: 3-disc at a time account with 2 of those going to me and 1 to my wife). When I read about this yesterday it was the straw that broke my proverbial back; I went ahead and put our subscription on hold for 90 days.

    When my wife and I met almost 3 years ago, we each had our own Netflix accounts, both with about 1500 ratings a piece. When we got together we decided to close her’s and use mine. When that happen she lost all of her ratings and had to start from scratch. Now they are going to delete them all again for what? As far as I can tell just because they can and it is easier for them on some level.

    Way to screw your loyal user base NetFlix. If they have not remedied this in 90 days I’ll just put my account on another 90 day hold and continue doing that until I’m ready to say goodbye to my 1500 reviews.

  214. JuliunCeryneian says:

    I agree with the person who said Netflix is probably targeting power
    users they lose money on by eliminating profiles. Simple fact is,
    multiple people on one account are probably turning over movies at a
    much higher rate then 1-to-1 account holders. So even though they may
    get a lot of complaints Netflix probably has little incentive to
    reinstate profiles unless they increase prices for them.

  215. jagwire16 says:

    I followed suit and left this suggestion:

    “If you remove profiles from your service or jack up the cost to allow profiles I will cancel my account. It’s asinine to state that profiles are too much of a load on your web servers. UPGRADE if you need to. Your overhead is absolutely minimal.

    Please don’t remove the profiles feature.

    Thanks,
    Jeremy”

  216. live4soccer says:

    Garbage and suicidal. In the age of social networking where everyone is unique and where being unique is celebrated, Netflix decides that what the people want is to be homogeneous and vanilla. They believe that the hard core users will want to be reduced to a mailing address that rents movies? Not likely. Remove-nose, spite-face.

    I’ll be an ex-Netflix user come Sept 1 unless they reverse this nonsense or come up with a suitable alternative…

  217. Dacker says:

    Totally sux when you have 3 queues for 3 people, like I do.

    The only thing you can do is send Netflix feedback, like I did.

  218. Trai_Dep says:

    @Dacker: Um. Or leave. :)

  219. Charmander says:

    I’m very unhappy with this move on the part ofNetflix. My husband and I have very different tastes and so like to have different movie queues. And, while he could have a movie arrive and keep it for days and days, during that time I could have received and watched 3 movies from my own queue. With this new policy, we’re going to have to log onto the damn site every day to figure out the logistics of our movies. It will be EXTREMELY inconvenient. Stupid move, Netflix.

  220. rjgnyc says:

    Keep in mind that any online system that ever changes in any way, for benefit (flickr giving video) or loss (this) will be met with people who are pissed off, threatening to leave, and deciding this was the final straw of terrible service that caused them to throw their hands in the air and quit.

    I’m not saying that the complaints aren’t justified, it’s just not exactly shocking that some people dislike a change. As was said, they probably looked a the number of people who used it, saw how small it was, came to some formulaic conclusion of how much of a loss it would be to cancel the extra versus how much it would cost to keep it active, and decided accordingly.

    As mean as big companies are, they’re not going to just do something without thinking of how financially wise it is. If it was going to be THAT financially devastating to take this away, they just wouldn’t.

    I’d find it funny if they said they’re taking it away just to incite such outrage and then install a new system (heck, even a free one) that handles things so much better. That way, outraged customers feel vindicated and because they “won”, they’re even more likely to stay

    OH BUSINESSES.

  221. MissGayle says:

    found this wikipedia page on Intelliflix.

    i was very surprised on what i read

    Intelliflix
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Jump to: navigation, search

    Intelliflix is an online DVD rental service established in Florida, United States, in 2004, which ceased operations in late 2007. The company utilized company-owned distribution facilities, in addition to claiming a nationwide network of independent video retailers (IVRs) to service both pay-per-rental and subscription customers. Its main competitors were Netflix.com and Blockbuster.com. Intelliflix gained notoriety by being the only major DVD-rental company that offered adult movies and game rentals in the same subscription.[citation needed]

    Among Intelliflix’s offered features was an annual three-rentals-at-a-time plan (called a “SuperPass”) for only $99 per year. Customers were strongly urged to purchase the annual SuperPass, with the promise that they could cancel anytime. Its advertised prices made it the least expensive online rental plan for three rentals at a time. Its website also claimed faster shipping time than Netflix, even promising to ship new movies before old movies had been returned to their warehouse.

    In 2006, Intelliflix was said to have “the best deal in DVD delivery” by WNBC, NBC’s New York affiliate.[1] However, customers’ reviews of the company over a three-year period averaged only one out of ten stars.[2] In addition, the company has received an “F” rating by the Southeast Florida Better Business Bureau, for ignoring or refusing to resolve over 700 customer complaints.[3]

    [edit] State of Florida Lawsuit

    On August 29, 2007, Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum filed suit against Intelliflix and its owner Christopher Hickey for deceptive advertising and operating without a license.[4] An investigation into the company’s practices had been launched in January 2007 by the Attorney General’s Economic Crimes Division, after it received more than 285 complaints about the company. The investigation found that consumers who attempted to cancel their subscriptions were rebuffed, that Intelliflix’s movie selection and delivery times were far worse than represented on its website, and that the company was unresponsive to complaints.

    The lawsuit asked that Intelliflix be permanently enjoined from engaging in the business of online video rental. Intelliflix ceased operations by year’s end, though its website is still active.

    The lawsuit also charged the company for failing to register a business license with the state. The company faces fines for violating Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA), fines for each year it failed to register its business, and victim restitution.

  222. Mary says:

    Why is everybody assuming that Netflix isn’t going to ever give us a similar or better feature in the future? Because really, if the profiles were little used it’s completely conceivable that the code was bogging down the system and making coding and new features much more difficult.

    That’s the way these things work, eliminating that code could free them up to make new features, and better things.

    Maybe it’s just me, but I trust them to do just that. Seven years of fabulous service and then I have one inconvenience that I need to reorder my queue myself (like I did when I first signed up)? Yeah, not quitting over that.

    Honestly, you’re not going to find better service and selection elsewhere. We’ve all seen enough stories about Blockbuster on Consumerist.

    And well, as for downloading the movies illegally instead…yeah, as somebody who is going into the entertainment business, I have to say that kind of theft bothers me.

  223. MarniaArion says:

    WHY?!

    This is terrible. It¹s bad enough that they are eliminating the feature, but
    why would they delete all the profile data? We have spend lots of energy on
    that. Both of our queues have hundreds of selections in them.

    We very much hope Netflix reconsiders this.

    If they will not change your mind about eliminating profiles, they really
    must provide a profile merge tool. It¹s unbelievable that they would just
    delete all our second profile¹s ratings, friends, queues, etc. It seems like
    it would even have value to them, as data.

    According to their list of impacts, they are already merging certain things
    (DVDs in transit and history for example). Why would they just delete our
    2nd profile queue? We have hundreds of selections on that? How is a ³print
    out² going to help? I’m guessing they expect us to sit and re-key it.

    And they¹re going to just delete ratings and friends connections?

    And if it’s too complex to auto merge, they also won¹t provide for a new
    account to be created based on the profile?

    This is ridiculous. We¹re long time shareholders and Netflix fans, nay,
    fanatics, but this REALLY hurts.

    PS: there¹s a contradictory statement in the FAQ. It says consider moving
    all DVD titles in profile queues to main queue, and to do so visit
    http://www.netflix.com/DVDDistribution?lnkctr=viewprof_distdisks but that is
    where you can allocate the number of DVDs per profile, not a queue merge
    tool is the suggestion implies, and as they should provide if they go
    through with this.

  224. Mudpuddle says:

    Even though I dont use the feature I see no logical reason why netflix would mess with what “works” for some ait the risk of making some unhappy customers. Dont fix it if it isn’t broke. I love the service and personally would love to see more development in the communication abilities among freinds and community.

  225. starbreiz says:

    @BLANDspace: I called Netflix about being unable to add a new profile to my account last week. (Before this email was sent out, and while their online help still explained how to add a new profile). They told me “it is taking up too much space in the code.” I assume the CSR was trying to explain something about bloated code or system resources, or it could’ve been something meaningless from a script.

  226. SayAhh says:

    Improve the Netflix website = saving server space = increase the bottom line => loss of customers = closer to becoming Blockbuster Online.

    Q.E.D.

  227. Dieholmes says:

    I am feeling pretty good about my marriage right now.

    Believe it or not, my husband and I are interested in the SAME MOVIES. We need only ONE queue.

    I can see the value of the profiles if you have kids, but if not, maybe you and your spouse should sit down and watch a movie together once in a while. That is if you aren’t too busy writing letters of polite complaint.

    Just a suggestion.

  228. nunya37 says:

    The different queues clearly are a very useful thing – not just for making it easier to keep separate lists of what DVDs will get sent, but also for keeping separate ratings/recommendations. The ratings and recommendations are far more key to keep separate. With some amount of extra effort, you can manage the delivery of the DVDs that you want next. But there is no amount of effort you can expend to have the system keep ratings for different people separate if you don’t have the separate queues.

    I have a friend who has discussed this with them at some length. He reported that they claimed that only 1% of their customer base used the feature at all, and that a substantial portion of people found it confusing.

    So rather than improve the interface design, they just remove it…

  229. Mary says:

    @Mudpuddle: The system IS broken. They’ve stated in other blogs that the code for profiles was messing up new features they wanted to add to make the site better.

    If the profiles, which by all accounts are used by a very slim minority (though a vocal one that seems to be flocking here) are screwing up things that could bring people to the website, how does it make sense to keep them?

    Being generous, say 3% of the site uses the profiles and 1% quits over their elimination. Then they implement a very fabulous new feature that brings them a 5% growth.

    Who wins? Netflix, and the people who stuck with them and didn’t get their knickers in a twist over one inconvenience.

  230. RevRagnarok says:

    If anybody is still reading, it’s not too hard to “back up” the queue in case you don’t trust them – you can get a personalized RSS link at the bottom of the queue page. Then I had Firefox save the page. Then you can use the Firefox extension “Linky” to open them in batches for re-adding. Still sucks, but better than doing it totally manually.

  231. MissGayle says:

    I had actually already re-done our budget to drop Direct TV and add netflix – until now. My husband and I have vastly different taste in movies and TV shows, not to mention two kids still at home, boys 13 and 14. Eliminating profiles is a stupid, stupid move. And as someone quite familiar with computer coding – there is no way such code could “mess up” other “features.” What data analysis could possibly be “messed up” by having accurate ratings, preferences, friends, recommendations, etc. that are generated by having separate profiles? Having to have two or three separate accounts is not cheaper than Direct TV, so there’s no point in changing anything. Clearly, their real goal is to force people to buy multiple memberships – there is no other goal here.

  232. ordendelfai says:

    Yay, they (and this is belated to this thread) listened to the customers and didn’t remove profiles ;=)