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?