each one found hints to fill the holes in the catalog

A French journalist in San Francisco about Netflix (june 2014):


One of my first reflex, once I arrived on the spot and unpacked my suitcase and my computer, is to subscribe to Netflix.

A name, an email address, a credit card number (which will be charged $ 8 per month, the price of a pizza), and I plunge among the 48 million users of the online video service.

First surprise when I get connected: Netflix quickly insists on its recommendation system.

Pop-up windows display and make me scroll dozens of movies or series, offering me to indicate those I have seen and enjoyed.

“The more you write and watch our videos, the more we can help you find things that will please you,” Netflix promised me, endeavouring to  personalize its service.

These informations will be very useful to Netflix. They will allow the company to record and analyze precisely my uses, to examine what kind of movies or series I watch, how much time I spend each week, how many minutes I spent watching this episode of that series before stopping, to note, too, if I used the service from an iPhone app, a web browser or an Xbox, to compile the rating I have assigned to a video and the comments that I could leave.

This analysis of users activity allows Netflix to have a huge database: how millions of people watch movies and series for years, what kind of intrigue we are sensitive to, at what point our attention switches off, what are the types of characters of whom we prefer to follow the adventures, etc.

By studying these data, the site launched the fundind and the production of original series like House of Cards. But the movies catalog regularly reveals gaping holes.

The series selection is more complete than the movies one.

The service brings some frustration: no offer to watch the latest episodes of Girls or Game of Thrones, nor to find old Godard, Hitchcock, Lang, Resnais, Lynch, Antonioni, Herzog, Varda, Allen, Kubrick.

Among the majority of youung people met in San Francisco, each one found hints to fill the holes in the catalog, like exchanging downloaded files at work, or watching poor quality streaming, orgoing to the movie theatre!

Source: http://www.franceculture.fr/emission-revue-de-presse-culturelle-d-antoine-guillot-le-cochon-et-le-grand-mechant-loup-2014-06-10

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