How big is the market for DRM-Free?

It's the Day Against DRM, and EFF is celebrating by publishing the first public look at How Much Do Consumers Value Interoperability? Evidence from the Price of DVD Players, a scholarly economics paper that uses clever techniques to reveal some eye-popping number on the strangled market for DRM-free gadgets. Read the rest

I can not wait for 'Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance'

Netflix brings us a prequel series to the Jim Henson Company's epic The Dark Crystal.

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How Netflix is driving permanent, terrible, standards-defined insecurity for billions of browser users

The New Scientist has published a good piece on Encrypted Media Extensions (previously), the World Wide Web Consortium's proposed standard for adding DRM to video streams; they're creating their first-ever standard that is encompassed by laws protecting DRM (such as the DMCA), and in so doing, they're creating new liability for security researchers, who'll face unprecedented criminal and civil liability just for reporting defects in browsers. Read the rest

The Netflix library has half the titles it did four years ago

Consumer site Extreamist confirms what many suspected: Netflix has sharply reduced its streaming library titles by over 50% from an estimated 11,000 in 2012 to about 5,300 today. Read the rest

Check out the meta first trailer for Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

The first teaser trailer for Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events features Patrick Warburton as Lemony Snicket himself. All eight episodes of the highly anticipated upcoming series drop on Netflix on January 13. Enjoy the cruel whimsy and whimsical cruelty of what’s to come. Read the rest

HTML standardization group calls on W3C to protect security researchers from DRM

The World Wide Web Consortium has embarked upon an ill-advised project to standardize Digital Rights Management (DRM) for video at the behest of companies like Netflix; in so doing, they are, for the first time, making a standard whose implementations will be covered under anti-circumvention laws like Section 1201 of the DMCA, which makes it a potential felony to reveal defects in products without the manufacturer's permission. Read the rest

Mascots, a new mockumentary from Christopher "Best in Show" Guest

After the astounding success of Spinal Tap, Christopher Guest directed a string of brilliant mockumentaries in the same style, like "Best in Show" and "Waiting for Guffman"; now he's created "Mascots" for Netflix, about "the ultra-competitive world of sports mascots." Read the rest

Boars, Gore, and Swords podcast talks Netflix's Stranger Things

Netflix's Stranger Things

This week on the podcast, Boars, Gore, and Swords takes a break from the A Song of Ice and Fire book club to watch the first episode of Netflix's Spielbergian horror sci-fi series Stranger Things. In this installment of What You Should Be WatchingIvan and Red discuss the shows's many references, what constitutes a solid creeping monster jump scare, and ill-fated emotional attachments to burly diner cooks.

To catch up on previous television seasons, the A Song of Ice And Fire books, and other TV and movies, check out the BGaS archive. You can find them on Twitter @boarsgoreswords, like their Facebook fanpage, and email them. If you want access to extra episodes and content, you can donate to the Patreon. Read the rest

Review: Voltron, Legendary Defender

My people raised me on the greatness of Voltron Lion Force. So when I discovered there was a remake on Netflix, I was excited. Scared. The bland unpleasantness of the Thundercats reboot lingers still with me. Last night I caught the first episodes, and I have to say I 👏 was 👏 pleasantly 👏 surprised. Read the rest

Mur Lafferty's "Shambling Guide to NYC" is coming to Netflix!

Mur Lafferty, an amazing author and podcaster, had her mainstream publishing debt in 2013 with the wonderful Shambling Guide to New York City, about a travel writer who gets tapped to write a guidebook for spooks, haints, vampires and werewolves. Read the rest

Cinesift is a handy way to find great movies by platform

Whenever I think I've exhausted the possibilities of Netflix or Amazon Prime, I jump on Cinesift and use their handy filters for a deep dive into the vaults.

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Save Netflix!

Not this Netflix, but the next one, the one that'll make Netflix look like Blockbuster -- because if the World Wide Web Consortium goes along with its plan to make it illegal to innovate in ways that the movie studios and record labels disapprove of, there will be no more companies like Netflix. Read the rest

Stretch Armstrong cartoon coming to Netflix

Netflix ordered 26 episodes of a new Hasbro-produced cartoon starring Stretch Armstrong, the iconic 1970s action figure whose rubbery body could be pulled and stretched until its skin inevitable tore or was punctured and the gross gel filling dripped out. I hope they do battle with the evil Stretch Monster! (Original TV commercial below.)

From Variety:

The 26-episode Stretch Armstrong series, Hasbro Studios’ first original programming for Netflix, is slated to debut in 2017. The animated animated action/comedy series is about an over-scheduled teenager named Jake Armstrong and his two best friends. Then the trio are accidentally exposed to an experimental chemical, they become Stretch Armstrong and the Flex Fighters — a team of stretchable superheroes.

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Netflix demands Net Neutrality, but makes an exception for T-Mobile

T-Mobile's "Binge On" service advertises itself as a "video optimization" service that publishers and customers opt into, but it's really just throttling for all video, something T-Mobile CEO John Legere vehemently denied, then admitted to. Read the rest

Netflix cracks down on VPNs, Tor, and other proxies, to enforce region-blocking

In a blog post, Netflix says it will vigorously block you from using internet proxies to view shows or movies you're blocked from viewing in your home country.

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Search Netflix using secret category codes

Netflix Secret Categories enables you to search by code for categories like "Spy Action & Adventure," "Campy Movies," "Teen Dramas," "Satanic Stories," and "Alien Sci-Fi."

(via /r/InternetIsBeautiful)

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Netflix launches in 130 new countries, but not in China, Syria, or North Korea

Big streaming content news out of CES this morning: Netflix is now live in 130 additional countries, which makes its service available to billions of new users. The most notable exception: China.

CEO Reed Hastings made the announcement at the annual Consumer Electronics Forum in Las Vegas today.

"You are witnessing the birth of a global TV network," he said.

Netflix "won't be available in Crimea, North Korea and Syria due to U.S. government restrictions on American companies," the company said.

Countries where Netflix will now be available include Azerbaijan, India, Vietnam, Nigeria, Poland, Russia, Saudia Arabia, South Korea, Singapore, Turkey and Indonesia can now use Netflix--but presumably with certain restrictions, in certain nations.

"Netflix Is Now Available Around the World" [netflix press release]

[CNN via @brianstelter] Read the rest

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