Netflix Proves That It Still Cares About DVDs, Buys URL

In spite of the fact that Netflix has done an awful lot in the last year to distance itself from the disc-by-mail service that made it a household name, the company apparently still wants to be associated with the shiny discs.

Earlier this week, Netflix purchased the URL, which now redirects to, a portal to sign up for the disc-by-mail service, for people who aren’t already logged into the site.

But why buy the URL when Netflix went so far as to, in a spectacular error of judgment, briefly spin off its DVD business into something called Qwikster?

“Netflix cares about keeping DVD healthy,” says Netflix rep Steve “I’m not related to the guy from Dirty Dancing” Swasey, “and this is just one small investment in keeping DVD healthy.”

Of course, should Netflix ever decide to make another go at spinning off a DVD-only company, it now has a URL that people won’t make fun of.

Confirmed: Netflix buys [ via]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Rhinoguy says:

    As long as they don’t jack the price again, who cares?

  2. Scuba Steve says:

    Netflix knows 2 things. That it’s streaming service is one of the most volatile aspects of its business model due to movie studios not wanting any one service to have dominance over others. (And always wanting more money for their movies)

    And that people really love the streaming service.

    So they want to distance the DVD rental portion. The movie studios don’t mind this part of the rental business because there’s a physical limit on how many movies they can send out and these discs will break over time giving movie studios more profit. However its not as profitable as the streaming, and not as good a value.

    • YouDidWhatNow? says:

      …one would hope they also know that streaming is a laughably impossible proposition for millions of American consumers, for whom there is no viable alternative to physical disks.

  3. axolotl says:

    “Netflix cares about keeping DVD healthy,” says Netflix rep Steve “I’m not related to the guy from Dirty Dancing” Swasey, “and this is just one small investment in keeping DVD healthy.”

    I read this three times before I realized it was NOT saying that “Steve” threw in the fact that he’s not related in Patrick Swazey in the middle of his sentence…

  4. John says:

    I think the makers of AnyDVD should sign up as an affiliate of Netflix and sell DVD memberships. Go together like chocolate and peanut butter!

  5. FrugalFreak says:

    good, the content holders can’t control them with DVD’s.

  6. HogwartsProfessor says:

    Still got all my DVDs and occasionally buy more, but usually when they’re $5 or so. I really need to update my catalog.

    There are a lot of older movies I wish Netflix would get on streaming, but as long as they have the DVDs, at least I can watch them.

  7. Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

    I think there’s a place for both. While I like the Instant Gratification aspect of streaming, the Netflix catalog still sucks. I have to plan ahead for DVDs, but there’s something about having a physical disc that feels more manageable in my DVD player (without the occasional stuttering or catchup of streaming). I guess I’m old school and like discs ofer streaming. For movies I really like and watch over and over again, I buy the disc and feel like I actually own something of value to me and my family. For collector types, they give people something to collect and show off like the old record collection.

  8. fortymegafonzies says:

    Maybe ever so slightly off-topic, but the continuing dumbing down of the Netflix user interface is almost to the point of driving me away. I mean, seriously. On a great big 1080p display, you can only see about 2.5 search results at a time? The whole site now feels like it was modeled after some Fisher-Price computer toy for toddlers.

    • YouDidWhatNow? says:

      Yup. Same thing happening everywhere. Windows. Office Ribbon. Hell, even World of Warcraft. Seems everyone is driven to appeal to the lowest common denominator – so everything gets all Fisher-Priced.

  9. Naked-Gord-Program says:

    Well I suppose this is good. Anything to keep DVD (and BR) alive.

    Buying (not renting) digital content gives the company control of everything via the TOS including a limited number of retailers who sell it and often at similar prices.

    DVD/BR is a wide open market where the consumer controls much more of the rights and where there’s a number of retailers and price points to choose from.

  10. GoldVRod says:

    ‘”Netflix cares about keeping DVD healthy,” says Netflix rep Steve Swasey’

    Good lord, every time I read something from Swasey I shake my head. I’m dumbfounded as to how he can manage to cram patronizing bullshit into each and every PR soundbyte.

    Some other gems

    Re: The terrible new user interface.

    “Most of [the comments] have the same theme, which is ‘what was wrong with before?’ What we’re saying is we’ve tested this extensively, we know the vast, vast majority of people like this. It’s new, it’s easier, it’s cleaner.” When questioned about whether Netflix is planning on keeping the new interface despite the negative response, Swasey said, “Absolutely. We made it and tested it and researched it and tried it out and everywhere we tried it, it had a better reception. Otherwise we wouldn’t have made the change.”

    In other – shut up you dumbfucks it isn’t going to change.

    On the price hike
    “Yes, 60 percent is a big number. But that increase is only $6 a month more. That’s a latté a month. We’ve gone from an extreme terrific value to a terrific value.”

    Way to spin a single 60% price hike into the cost of an expensive coffee there Steve. It’s not the fact that it’s 60% x one person , it’s 60% x the total number of subscribers that you’re gaining. It’s a clear money grab and it ultimately cost you over a million subscribers. You idiot.

    Oh but wait, you thought it was only going to be 300,000 subs who quit Netflix…

    “We anticipated some folks were not going be happy with the change. It didn‚Äôt surprise us.” Swasey said, “30,000 or so is a sub set of 23 million subscribers. They’re not speaking for the majority. ”

    In other words – we don’t give a fuck about the subset. It’s all about the remaining (dwindling) subscribers.

    I could go on.

    Netflix, I will come back as a paying subscriber when you fire this arsehole. Until then I’ll be in the (ever increasing) minority of long term users who didn’t like being railroaded by your operational moves but disliked the tossy spin spat out by Steve.