Netflix Is Abandoning the Fight for Net Neutrality at a Critical Moment

Peter Castro
June 3, 2017

We are adding more and more shows.

Hastings referred to Amazon as "awfully scary" on CNBC that because of Amazon's big spending on original content that is meant to make it more competitive with Netflix.

"Everything Amazon does is so fantastic", Hastings said in an interview with CNBC Wednesday. "There is so much competition".

The principle behind net neutrality says all data should be treated equally by an internet service provider (ISP), so they can't prioritize one service over the other. "Mostly, it's how many people watch".

But with the recent cancellations, it does seem as if the company is making a ― to quote one of the most popular shows on the service ― "pivot". "They'll get a lot more awareness". But, Hastings said the debate will not last forever, as he predicts the eventual demise of traditional theatrical "windows", the periods between a film's theatrical release and its availability for home-viewing online or in the form of a Blu-Ray/DVD.

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As to whether it would raise Netflix's costs if the rules were changed, Hastings said he didn't think so.

The annual budget for Netflix originals is already $6 billion for 2017; the idea that it will grow even more is pretty fantastic.

- Said Netflix will keep increasing its total spending on content, beyond the $6 billion it'll invest this year. He also pointed out that the company has kept its base price at $7.99 for eight years, although he didn't say if it will increase prices in the future. "Sometimes the establishment is clumsy when it tries to shut out the insurgent, and then the insurgent's role is to play that up, which we did".

Hastings' assessment reflects similar thoughts in various industries, from retail to cloud computing, book publishing, streaming music and logistics - all businesses that are being ruffled by Amazon as it stretches its operations across the economic landscape.

"There's very little causality between what a user watches in terms of sport, and what they watch in terms of drama or adventure or films", Yellin told Trusted Reviews, referring to Netflix's focus. It's not that Hastings wants Netflix to purposely make shows that are unsuccessful, though. Netflix and its ilk won a major battle a year ago when an appeals court upheld new FCC rules that would try to keep the Internet unfettered.

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