You should read this CNET story about how Hollywood is beginning to conspire against Netflix.
Hollywood film executives want you to know that they are not at war with Netflix or the Internet.
Some of them told me over the past week that they have every intention to continue to distribute films and TV shows over the Web and at attractive prices to boot. They plan to provide viewers with a multitude of ways to access Internet content: on Web-connected handhelds and TVs, video game consoles, and iPads.
Only, don't ask them to do all this at the expense of the long-term health of their business. The general feeling with the studio executives I spoke with is that they cannot and will not throw in with Netflix and imperil other more lucrative revenue streams, such as pay TV or traditional broadcast services. They don't believe it is a forgone conclusion the Internet will become the dominant means of video distribution or that Netflix has already conquered the category.
Another of Hollywood's digital revenue streams was announced today, as Warner Brothers made it possible to rent The Dark Knight on Facebook for 30 Facebook credits, which is $3 in adult money.
The music industry nearly died of piracy until iTunes came along and proved it was possible to sell digital music cheaply and easily to people. Will Hollywood kill Netflix and other middlemen, as Gizmodo is theorizing, just so they can try to bilk viewers out of $3 a pop for rentals on a variety of different platforms? People are paying to use Netflix. It's easy and simple. Nobody is going to want to track down one of the myriad ways to legitimately rent a movie on an a la carte basis (especially if the first step involves finding out which movie studio owns the movie so you can rent it directly from them). People will turn to piracy instead, and then we're back to square one.
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