Like many other Netflix customers last year, Chris was frustrated with the service’s price hikes, loss of content, and wacky re-branding efforts. He canceled and took advantage of a free trial offer from competitor Blockbuster. His happiness about switching didn’t last long, especially when it took Blockbuster six weeks to get his first DVD to him. Sure, he lives in Alaska, but it’s not like they were delivering it on horseback.
Back when Netflix was making the blunder of raising rates and separating their disc service, I decided to let them know how disappointed I was. I cancelled my Netflix membership, and took advantage of a deal with Blockbuster to sign up for a disc service at a discounted rate. As a bonus they had a series that I was following that wasn’t available on Netflix. I felt pretty proud of myself for switching.
That pride soon turned into frustration. It took more than the free month to receive my first disc. By the time I received it in Anchorage, AK, almost 6 weeks had gone by since I had ordered it. As such, I had completely lost interest in the series, and moved on to something else. As one does with disc delivery services, I held onto the disc thinking I would watch it, eventually. Of course, I never did. Finally, I broke down and sent it back on March 26th of this year, and promptly cancelled my delivery service and now just use Netflix Streaming and Hulu.
When I cancelled my blockbuster service, they sent me an e-mail telling me that I have paid through April, and that they would continue to send discs until my service had ended. However they stated that I must return those discs within 30 days, or they would charge me the cost of the disc.
Today, 4/6/2012, I have received an e-mail stating that they just sent out the next disc in the series. It’s been more than two weeks since they received my last disc. This is exactly why I cancelled. I will simply put this disc back in the mail, and send it back, since I no longer have a contract with them. I can’t help but feel they are sending me discs now, as close to the end of my contract as possible to try to be able to charge for the disc when the contract officially ends. Remember, it took more than a week for the last disc to even get to me, so I don’t expect this to be here before 13th, and my contract ends on the 14th.
I do have another month after that to return the disc, but I held on to the last one for a very long time. You tell me, am I being too critical? At any rate, waiting a month for a DVD is ridiculous. I’m just remembering the days when Blockbuster used to charge me 10 times the cost of my rentals in late fees, and I am incredibly sensitive to that occurring again. As it stands, if I assume I have had this membership for 6 months (a low estimate) I have now spent more than $60 to hold onto a DVD that I haven’t even watch. I could have purchased the box set for that amount. I’m not faulting Blockbuster entirely. I should have returned it, but I’ve spent all the money I want to, and I want it to be left at that. Stop sending me movies Blockbuster!!!
The disadvantage of streaming video subscriptions: limited selection. The advantage: takes significantly less time than six weeks to reach your house.