Arts & Life, Film & Television

The one with the $100 million deal

It’s no secret that Netflix is not the only streaming service out there, but how many different services does this world really need?

The internet and I freaked out when Netflix announced that they were taking the comedy sitcom, “Friends” off of Netflix on Jan. 1, 2019.

The reason for the removal is that unfortunately, just like every other major movie industry out there, Warner Bros. announced they would launch their own streaming service in 2019, meaning they would take back all of their movies and TV shows and put them in their service instead of having them available on Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video and more. Their service is going to be paired with HBO as well.

On Dec. 3 an article posted by Student Problems” on Facebook about “Friends” leaving Netflix on New Year’s Day blew up with over 45,000 comments with people hating on the article. Though I did not partake in the hating of the article, my heart sure agreed with the rest of them.

“I wonder how long it’ll take until Netflix is full of nothing but Netflix originals,” one commenter said.

Another said, “Ok, it’s time for me to leave Netflix, too.”

A few hours after the article was posted, Netflix announced that they renewed their contract to keep “Friends” until 2020. The deal cost Netflix $100 million. They’d previously paid $30 million to stream the show. We can’t say Netflix doesn’t love their viewers.

On their social media pages, Netflix posted, “The Holiday Armadillo has granted your wish: ‘Friends’ will still be there for you in the U.S. throughout 2019” The Holiday Armadillo is a “Friends” reference.

Although this was a win for all the “Friends” binge watchers, myself included, what about all the other shows and movies that have not been saved from the horror that is new, expensive streaming services?

Streaming services have only been around for 11 years, but they have quickly evolved. Now, every company wants to own a streaming service. Along with the pioneers such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime, there’s now HBO, Showtime, SlingTV, VUDU, Starz and still more to come, including Disney Play and the Warner Bros. streaming service.

Obviously, these streaming services will charge money for their services. All of these services will have different TV shows and movies that people love and evidently, no service will have everything at once. However, currently it’s fairly easy to hop from Netflix to Hulu because whatever one service doesn’t have, the other does. Here’s a perfect example: Netflix currently has “Shrek” while Hulu has “Shrek 2” and the rest of the installments are nowhere to be found.

“It sounds like more money each month,” said senior political science major, Levi Tristao. “I honestly don’t think they will be successful because of the restricted content. I probably won’t subscribe.”

It is true that it will definitely cost viewers a lot more money, it will be difficult to decide which service to pick from, and college students will probably have a mental breakdown once “The Office” is taken off Netflix.

Piracy rates will be off the charts because of all of the payed streaming services that have different shows and movies. Currently, the United States has the lowest piracy rate with only 19%, but what will happen when we need four different streaming services and $40 a month just to binge watch different superhero movies? It’ll be much easier to go to some online website that lets you download free movies, rather than paying so much to watch anything.

In a perfect world, there would be no competition between all of these different companies, and they’d all work in harmony to produce one mega ultra super Netflix where we could binge watch Batman, Spongebob Squarepants, The Simpsons and Lilo and Stitch all in one fancy streaming service. Unfortunately, I think we all know that’ll never happen, but it’s nice to dream.

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