Late last year, my old parents who don't speak English came to visit me for a couple of months in the US. I'm just a graduate student with a limited budget, and my mom is car sick so we couldn't go out every night. I didn't want them to waste time on Facebook after dinner until we went to bed, so I had to think of something to do. We would spend time watching classic movies together every night with the little projector I have. I would have to download the Vietnamese subtitles from subscene and play the pirated movies with VLC. Sometimes the timings were a bit off but VLC allowed me to fix it easily.
There was no streaming service offered at any price that allowed me to have native language subtitles with those movies. I'm very happy for the time we had together, it might have been the very last chance we had in our lives. I am very thankful because BitTorrent and VLC allowed me to do what would be otherwise impossible.
Until they master such exotic technologies as "streaming video" and "volume control" they're going to keep driving people to torrenting. Netflix figured this out a decade ago, and I wonder how many people have ever "given up" on Netflix to go torrent a show? I can't imagine it's a lot.
The movie company sold the rights to show that movie in the UK to some other company instead of Netflix, probably for more money than Netflix offered them.
Also, you're paying a fixed monthly fee, and unless you're part of the small minority that travels a lot, you're not likely to drop Netflix over not being able to watch certain movies in foreign countries, hence they didn't lose anything.
Let’s say you’re a French movie distributor. You know the French market, you know which movies will sell, you know how to market to French audiences. Because of this you can bid more on the rights to distribute movies in France than a global company that doesn’t have any specific knowledge about the French market (your return is likely to be higher and you’re liekely to have fewer failures). Same in the Czech, Romanian, etc markets.
But let’s say this movie conflicts with the release of some other movie you’re distributing so you want to hold it back for three weeks.
What’s your proposed solution? Tell the studio they can only sign deals with global distributors? Tell them to accept less money?
Stop signing exclusive deals with regional distributors. If you're going to put something on Netflix, put it on Netflix world-wide. That doesn't mean you can't also put it on a streaming service based in France that concentrates on French language movies -- do both. Let them each pay you for non-exclusive global rights.
You get paid more per service for an exclusive deal, but you also get paid by fewer services. Which is increasingly looking like a bad deal as the many different services proliferate. Having a hundred buyers is more profitable than having only one buyer that pays ten times as much.
It's the same game they're playing with regional exclusivity to begin with -- get more buyers by dividing up the rights. Rights in one country aren't worth as much as rights world-wide but you can sell them to more people.
The difference is that regional exclusivity makes customers angry and non-exclusive licensing makes customers happy.
It's not that easy to work away from. Which is why Netflix has been paying more to create or co-create content (most Netflix content isn't world-wide exclusive it seems).
Which is another reason not to use regional licensing going forward, and pass laws to disfavor it in general. It increases transaction costs -- then when Netflix or any of your hundred other buyers wants global rights to a particular film, they have to negotiate with a hundred regional distributors instead of just the original creator. The transaction costs go from "N" to "N times M" where N and M are both large. And transaction costs make otherwise profitable transactions either less profitable or not happen at all.
I'm curious what your proposed legislation would be. Just outlaw exclusive licensing? Would you prohibit vertical integration between content producers and distributors or just force vertically integrated companies to license content to competing distributors?
How about a distributor that has an inherent market advantage and so can bid higher on the rights than other distributors? Would that be allowed? Or would you require producers to charge some lowest common denominator fee so that you can't create releases that are effectively exclusive?
I just can't imagine how you would ever effectively police this without taking away a lot of free market rights from participants.
BTW, just so it's clear, I fully support the current EU Digital Single Market rules that try to enforce the fact that you should be allowed to watch your content while you are traveling. I think that's much easier on all sides of the equation because you're not forcing anyone to make additional deals that they don't want to make (i.e. distributing content to other companies when they want it to be exclusive). I just think it's a big step from that to actually legislating away exclusive distribution deals.
A big thing would be to just discontinue legislative support for it. Get rid of any law preventing third parties from circumventing region locks, so that major companies can overtly thwart them.
Then you can get a "tell Netflix I'm in..." selector from your ISP or bank and the problem gets solved by the market itself.
But there are still two big gaps
1. Even for physical or download to own media, you can still strike distribution exclusives and you can make them based on language. I can make a deal with a German distributor that they're the only ones that gets to distribute the German version of my movie. They can choose to delay the release of the German version for as long as they want. If you only speak German then you can't watch the movie even if the French, Italian, Spanish and Polish versions were released 6 months ago.
2. This really doesn't help with SVOD (e.g. Netflix-style) services. I can make exclusive deals with an SVOD provider in Germany and one in France. If the French provider decides they're going to hold back the release of the movie on their service then, sure, with the EU single digital market the German provider has to let you sign up, but now you're signing up for SVOD services all over the place.
This is being actively addressed by the EU:
e.g. I have a colleague who lives in Malmö (Sweden) and commutes daily to Copenhagen (Denmark). Lots of people travel into Luxembourg every day.
When I lived in the UK, the director's family lived on a pretty island in Spain, and he went every Friday for the weekend. Not exactly good for his CO₂ emissions, but people do this kind of thing.
I don't understand this practice as well, when you are paying for a DVD or a VOD service which allow you to download the file, you can still watch it anywhere. Is it illegal to bring a DVD abroad?
Why don't they give you the catalog you paid for in first place, everywhere, depending on your country's bank card? Then, no more need to setup a VPN blockade.
I feel these copyright companies often pick the most inconvenient option, even if it's costing them more in the end.
Start from https://ec.europa.eu/growth/single-market/digital_en – I've read something about them solving (or aiming to solve) exactly the situation you describe.
On another note, some companies like this. Take Valve with Steam. They are definitly in a position to dictate "no region lock bullshit", yet they still make them available. Because it means more money.
However, in reality, the content owners really aren't that dumb and incompetent. There are very punishing legal implications to breaking the contracts, especially your relationship with others. And the content owners don't just do nothing; there's quite detailed questions and requirements they give when you renew their content, and they very often discover things they want to change after.
It's obviously a problematic enough relationship that netflix doesn't want to be a part of it anymore. More power to them; I wish this could be done for all industries as easily/well.
In the EU most people have identity documents... and enough services that provide identity verification.
The said verification is mandatory in some industries like online gambling.
There is no intrinsic hurdle to remove the retarded IP block. Using VPN to bypass it is just yet another step away but again, why bother with VPN when I can get it via torrent?
I think they might be getting there - they've shown they can generate their own content that people want to watch and that they're a "destination" site - both pretty big sticks to wield at the next relicensing discussion.
(Imagine trying to explain to your investors that your next 10 years of films won't be on Netflix...)
The deal can include whatever the content owners want it to include. And the content owners want it to include strict enforcement.
They can specify the specific technical details of enforcement, if they want. That's a legal contract, and one that they have a financial incentive to offer. Or they can specify an acceptable level of enforcement failures, or they can specify financial penalties for insufficient enforcement, or they can specify Netflix carries liability for infringement that it allows.
Or they could leave Netflix to do as they will, but threaten to pull their content or to sue Netflix for contributory negligence or whatever if Netflix doesn't comply. The fact of the matter is, the content owners have leverage and Netflix is not (yet?) in a position where they can blow off such concerns. Netflix is trying to get into that position, by creating its own content, but right now the majority of their content is dependent on other parties finding Netflix an acceptable content partner.
depends on the VPN...
if you mean 'commercial vpn service', then probably yes.
if you mean 'routing it through some other machine you own', 'your access to <xyzpq network>' then probably no..
vpn != commercial vpn service
This is also not the full story. Recently I was watching one TV series on Netflix and when I was in the middle of the season Netlfilx informed me that by the end of January they will remove it because of copyright deal (they could stream it only for certain period of time in Poland). Of course that series is still available in UK.
(For reference: the launch price for all AAA releases is 2000 RUB (~35 USD), while the same games on consoles often go up to ~$60 and even beyond. Especially on the Switch: Zelda is ~$80!)
People here kinda grew up with the idea that paying money for non-physical things is just ridiculous. And still many people only pay money for multiplayer games that rely on official servers.
Steam offers the multiplayer AND good launch prices AND sales with huge discounts AND a very convenient interface for downloading and launching games… so tons of PC gamers did get sucked into it :D
I assume a motivations of it are a) to have presence next to console games and b) gift-giving? If there were at least the basic versions of the games on the disc, you could add c) people with slow internet to the equation, but that seems less and less common.
This is part of why the grey market for keys has surged here - when Steam and the stores are both about the same amount for a new release, the only cheaper avenue is to exploit the real vs perceived forex difference, and (moreso) the fact that grey market key stores don't price in our consumer protection laws (and in turn, the buyer doesn't get any of those protections).
This is why I predict that the $10 per month unlimited video streaming services will work, and the $10 per month unlimited music streaming services will fail. I don't think enough people are prepared to pay that price for unlimited music.
I mostly grew out of that phase, and began pirating things mostly to discover new obscure content. What.cd was amazing for music discovery, and I definitely went to a handful of concerts and bought a handful of CDs of bands I almost certainly never would have discovered without what.cd. Same goes for old and indie films.
These days I do very little pirating. I'll occasionally pirate a TV show or film that I can't find on the handful of VOD services I or my friends subscribe to. Say what you will about the bad aspects of the modern media ecosystem: DRM, "stream instead of own," fragmentation, etc. But, at least for me, the industry has done a decent job of competing with piracy on convenience.
It has, but the fragmentation that you mentioned is starting to seriously erode this progress. If the situation worsens on this front, I can definitely see a resurgence of piracy, again because of convenience.
Anecdotally, out of the people I know, only two still pirate, but a lot use illegal streaming sites.
My setup is idiosyncratic, and I wouldn't expect Netflix to build in every feature of power-user video players like mpv and vlc. As long as Netflix uses DRM, their service will be inadequate for some small segment of the population, and that segment will pirate their content, because their DRM has done nothing to stop their content appearing on torrent sites within hours of its release.
No, it makes sense. You want to play videos in a video player. Until those services let you choose your video player, i will remain sceptic.
would have had just as much utility and impressive shinyness without the latency..
I did as Netflix had continuous problems with keeping high quality stream at all times. Playing local file I have guaranteed HQ content without stops to buffer more data. Even with 250 Mb/s connection (measured using Netflix's own fast.com).
Incredible, that this is worth mentioning. But here we are (no offense to parent, it's just funny that downloading a movie is a feature).
Think about how incredibly less complex Netflix's tech stack would be, if it's just a big fat file server offering all shows or seeding torrents.
Sure, there is extra hassle for getting them in the first place but Netflix still has small library for my family (e.g. has Frozen but not Tangled).
It amazes me how actively hostile most of the TV networks are towards viewers. It's very obvious that we're the product and the advertisers are the customer. If the NBC app crashes in the middle of a show you're forced to re-watch all of the ads from the beginning. If an advertisement doesn't load for any reason, there's no timeout or error handling, you're just done watching that show until you kill and restart the app (and re-watch all the ads again).
Yes, someday they will realize most people under 45 don't watch TV news. That someday will come when their current viewers die. The stations will be lost -they already "tried" streaming. Who wants to bet that they will desperately add more advertisements to any stream they can.
And yes - ultimately it's about ad sales.
Where I come from around half the marriages are between people of different nationalities and a significant percentage of those between people of different languages. Even when people are fluent in a language, subtitles still allow a much more comfortable viewing (and also learning a language better). This is something that all those US-centric services just don't get. Netflix is improving with its own content, anyone else is far behind.
If the Netflix app allowed side loading my own subtitles, it’d be fine. But of course it doesn’t and won’t.
So guess what I do when I finish Narcos season 1 and discover lack of subtitles in season 2. Or when a show available on Netflix doesn’t have any (and I want to watch it with my spouse who can’t read English subs quickly enough).
Strangely enough, since discovering this aspect of Youtube, that has become my goto site for most movies, and definitely helped cut down on my pirating activity.
I had a similar experience last year trying to watch "The Orville" using the Fox Now app. First they place restrictions so that you can only watch the 4 most recent episodes.
And then the Android app itself was horribly slow and crashy. The interactive ads were annoying, but I could have lived with it if everything else had worked smoothly.
I'm so lazy these days that if it isn't already available on Netflix, I won't bother watching it. There's enough stuff on there that I can just watch something else. I'm also cycling through some Stanford physics lectures by Leonard Susskind, which satisfies my desires for intellectual simulation right now.
Does that include Chromium though? I think probably not. I will give it a try in Chromium but if that doesn't work then I will not be able to use Netflix still.
I'll still torrent when I buy a movie on DVD, because it's way easier to download than to rip it myself.
It says: "Sorry, this video is not available from your location."
I like to watch the first episode of a new show to see if I'll like it. But this is one show I deeply, I say again deeply regret watching. I'll never get those 22 minutes of my life back.
The show is cringeworthy. It's one of the un-funniest sitcoms (can they call it that?) I've ever seen. It's that bad.
Everything has a price, but I wouldn't watch another episode unless they paid me $100. And if the second episode was as bad as the first, they would need to keep doubling that payment for each additional episode.
The video was really laggy, skipped dialog due to lag jitters, and served up 15 minutes of ads for 22 minutes of content.
Ended up not watching the show because of NBC site not working right.
They won't master. They focus on monetization before they got the basics in place. Case in point MSNBC. Unbelievable where in the world the page is loading scripts from and phoning home to. Add weak streaming and of course the experience is brittle and virtually unusable. If MSNBC wants to share information with serious partners they may do that but the cheap way they let everyone add a tracker is embarrassing.
Their site is so pitifully bad I refuse to use it. I tried, I really did. But when the ads break and you’re forced to reload the stream, only to be put back to the start, with no ability to skip forward? Sorry, no.
I wait a day and torrent the show with the ads removed. And I don’t feel the tiniest bit bad about it.
The last time I used BitTorrent must be 6-7 years ago now.
I wanted to watch Lord of the Rings the other day, and to my surprise they pulled it from the available content in my country.
Also, it depends a bit on where in the world you lived. Netflix for the most part was a US phenomena, and even as it spread elsewhere the library offered often lagged what was found in the US. So people would use proxies and similar to access the US library from abroad.
The only exception I make is when software has overbearing DRM in place. I will not hand over money for a tainted product when I can get better for nothing.
With video media I'm largely covered with Netflix and Amazon Prime Video but there is still plenty of content I'm missing. Instead of doing the right thing many networks are rolling their own half arsed subscription streaming services. Nobody in their right mind is going to stay subbed to the likes of CBS All Access when the only thing half worth watching is Star Trek Discovery, I've seen many people ditching their sub now that the season is over.
Whether that reduces piracy or rather the legal enforcement which pushes torrents into the shadows of its former self does not hinge on the quality of the delivery.
Sadly, this has nothing to do with streaming and everything to do with rightsholders (aka "Hollywood").
The rights on the subtitles are held by the company that makes them, are then sold to the company that distributes the movie, which are then resold to regional distributors, separately from the rights to show the movie. This means that if you want to show, say Transformers, you have to negotiate with one company to show the picture, another company to license the sound, and yet another company for each set of subtitles.
It just isn't worth the effort in most cases to negotiate the Transformers English titles in France, for example.
Movie industry licensing and asset packaging are stuck in a time when you had to move physical reels of tape and film around, and still haven't caught up to digital technology.
Relevant quote: "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it." - Upton Sinclair
Until they see disruption or increased profits, I don't expect they'll change. I expect them to actually be disrupted before seeing it coming.
It isn't a good argument, but I could see it being made.
Translated subtitles would be copyrighted by the translator under a derivative license from the studio owning the film.
Subtitles of the type you suggest don't currently exist as standalone products; the level of detail and information you are describing would require the subtitles to be part of the film itself (see e.g., Atomic Blonde or John Wick for good examples).
Since using your own subtitle file, Netflix just doesn't have to do anything besides displaying them. Finding the correct subtitle is the users job, not Netflix. After all this would be called "use your own subtitle here" and I think Netflix can handle Unicode. Not everything has to be spoonfed for the dumbest user alive. Also, I don't think there is a reliable way to detect delays in the subtitle, especially if it's in a different language then the audio track. If you have a reference subtitle track, this might work, comparing time of first appearance. Any subsequent offset might be due to 25/23,976 which could be detected, but again, this is not Netflix's problem.
Everyone could have access to all movies/songs/books ever written with every subtitle file, dvd-only extra and whatnot they want. Could in the sense that it already exists and the marginal cost of delivering it to people is 0.
All that dealmaking, liscencing and such that you are describing... They're not strictly necessary. At least, they are not required to deliver the "goods." They are required in order to get revenue. Revenue requires pricing which requires exclusion, scarcity.
Not giving everyone everything is wasteful.
Sound is part of the film license in the US and Europe. This includes music and songs within the film. Studios pay out big bucks to license songs for films.
For example: my current employer would pay a license of approximately $500 to license major label music that will be played at an event to a live audience, broadcast globally, and streamed to 10 million viewers. (The total music budget for a 3-day event is maybe $5000, and that covers hours of music.) A movie studio licensing that same song for a movie would pay a minimum of $25,000, just for that song, assuming that it's part of the back catalog. A song that made the top 100 of the Billboard lists when it was released could command more than $100,000.
That's why sometimes the songs in the shows on Netflix are different than the ones on the DVDs, for example.
For whatever reason this is not the case for series in Netflix, which most of the time contain also in English subtitles. Wouldn't have helped the original commenter's case of course.
Just curious about the technicalities of copyright law.
Netflix, a Californian company, simply couldn't fathom that some people might understand English and Spanish.
Or they just decided the path that serves the most people without complicating matters is to assume you want subtitles for any language not selected as the primary audio language.
I think the relevant question here is how would you design a control panel that allowed you to define which of the many languages which might be in the movie should be subtitled or not? I think the people that care about this (that is, those that speak both languages and find it annoying) is vanishingly small.
44% of Californians speak a language other than English at home, and 1/5 nationwide , yet Netflix' product doesn't seem to cater particularly well to those audiences.
And I'd add that what to subtitle is an artistic choice; directors carefully decide what languages to use and what they want to subtitle or leave untranslated. Plus Netflix have to deal with source material from hundreds of companies. Creating clever subtitle features quickly gets out into very deep waters.
On the web, you can serve customized content to every single client, because the tech enables it. It's just wrong to go for "one size fits all".
No one on this site will have problem with that UI, but I personally know people who have issues with much simpler things.
It's really not hard. The real problem is that because it's closed-source software, the user must rely on the creator to think of every edge case.
The only reason I have left to pirate a movie that is available to me on netflix is to get more stable playback, the ability to play slightly faster, and the ability to use Smooth Video Project.
It's obvious that DRM-based platforms have driven TV manufacturers to implement expensive frame-interpolation into their displays, when it can be done much more efficiently at the decoder level, on machines where it makes sense to already have a fast GPU. This is the thing I find most frustrating with this situation.
On hbo Nordic, (The Scandinavian hbo go) off means -OFF- and it’s absolutely infuriatingly stupid to expect that I can speak Spanish, or Russian, just because I don’t want Scandinavian subtitles when watching an English movie
I thought to myself 'Cool, I have not seen this movie since it's initial release. I remember there is an extended version, let's check it out'.
Nope, you only get the base version on Netflix. And that's until netflix removes it from it's library.
I am pretty sure that for such a well known movie, I could be watching the hires version of the extended cut with all its goodies after 2 minutes of research if I wanted too thanks to bitorrent.
This is in terms of amounts of books that I have downloaded! Most associate torrents with audio/video downloads. But any books lovers here - should check out the wealth out there.
I sincerely want to 'buy' all books I have downloaded after I own a house and a dog.
Bittorrent and VLC gives you 100% control over how you view content. And subtitles are a huge part of the watching experience for many people.
a) Being on time. If you want to take part in the online discussion about tv shows, you have to watch them on time. For a ton of shows I can't even buy episodes on the day they come out. Torrenting is still the far superior choice.
b) Languages. Yes netflix, I know that I live in Germany. That does not mean that I don't want to have the option of watching anime in Japanese with English subtitles. And Amazon, it's great that I found out you are now showing advertisements before every episode, but it's also in German. While everything else on amazon.de is in English for me.
c) Quality. I don't care that your algorithm thinks my network is not fast enough for HD. Just let me tell it that it's wrong. Or I could torrent and download something in actual HD within just a few minutes.
The worst thing is that all of those are completely artificial. There is no technological reason for any of those problems to exist. And ignoring if I want to or not, in most cases I don't even have the option of throwing absurd amounts of money at them to make them go away. Because of greed, laziness and/or stupidity, torrenting is still the superior option in most cases. For me.
PS: Mostly thanks to Bandcamp.com music torrenting is completely dead for me.
Seconded. My music search these days is
Find interesting band
v not sure I can
Is on bandcamp? +-no-> be arsed to even
+ check torrents
Really I prefer buying CDs at shows. Artists usually get to buy CDs from their own labels for $1 each, where if you buy it on Amazon/iTunes, they have to pay their label back for the recording costs, so they get like $0 until they hit some number (usually a few thousand). So if I buy a CD for $12, they're probably getting at least $10 of that.
Particularly on Bandcamp there are countless small, honest labels that act as a curator and really help to develop their artists while taking a fair cut. Being featured on one of them is a huge opportunity for most artists.
I also buy almost everything I find on Bandcamp. Excepting those über-hipster techno artists with 100-copies vinyl-only releases (but those you can usually still find rips on Soulseek.)
Begin excerpt from said interview:
What do you think about OiNK being shut down?
Trent: I'll admit I had an account there and frequented it quite often. At the end of the day, what made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store. Pretty much anything you could ever imagine, it was there, and it was there in the format you wanted.
If OiNK cost anything, I would certainly have paid, but there isn't the equivalent of that in the retail space right now. iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc.
Amazon has potential, but none of them get around the issue of pre-release leaks. And that's what's such a difficult puzzle at the moment. If your favorite band in the world has a leaked record out, do you listen to it or do you not listen to it?
People on those boards, they're grateful for the person that uploaded it — they're the hero. They're not stealing it because they're going to make money off of it; they're stealing it because they love the band. I'm not saying that I think OiNK is morally correct, but I do know that it existed because it filled a void of what people want.
Cease excerpt from said interview.
Flash forward 11 years and there still isn't a legal alternative to OiNK' Pink Palace (OPP) that can hold a candle to it. I love music, but the music that I love I can not find on any streaming service.
The bands I like are old enough that they are no longer touring or producing music and since I can not find any of their "old" songs on any (legal) streaming or downloading sites I am left with zero options to support the bands I personally like.
Redacted has almost anything that's not the most obscure of the underground.
Although for the more obscure things, youtube-dl is #1 where soulseek fails
How come? I know What.CD closed down, but I remember that RuTracker had quite a large selection of high-fidelity music records.
I've used Google Play when I couldn't find something on Bandcamp because it lets me purchase and download the album in a browser. But even then you have to have an account.
They want to make sure everyone uses their software that runs on their overpriced hardware, and DRM is yet another way to enforce that.
but yeah I never liked it/like it on windows.
iTunes successfully turned me off pirating music, why would I do it when I can pay 99p for a song and have all the metadata correct, including album art, perfectly synced to all my devices in perpetuity? And no DRM means I can play them on my non-apple/iTunes devices and media players.. great!
Well, unfortunately I want to own my music, so I don't like to use streaming services and there was an issue with some music going missing. So for as long as apple are pushing their subscription model so hard I'm going to go back to ripping from youtube or downloading FLAC torrents and converting them myself.
(sorry, I'm a little bitter that the entire UX around apple's media player changed to push this bullshit so hard)
I even… buy music on iTunes… and overwrite all of their metadata with MusicBrainz's.
I haven't tried bandcamp but iTunes is annoying for me today. Features like the "complete my album" and recommendations no longer exist except inside Apple Music.
It is so damn hard to find media in other languages, and there is no reason for it. The US and Germany are both very technologically advanced countries producing a great amount of media in their own majority languages, but as a German speaker in the US, Harry Potter is about the only German language novel I can reliably find. I like Harry Potter, sure, but I like other books too. I shouldn't have to fly to Germany to find them.
Another thing. I buy most movies I like on iTunes, but I have an issue with the films one of my favorite directors; Werner Herzog. The company that distributes his films on iTunes has decided to mostly make his films available with only a dubbed English soundtrack rather than the original German with subtitles. Even though I don't speak German, hearing the original actors voices gives me a better feel of what the director was doing. Herzog actually shot and edited two different versions of Nosferatu, but his ear for english, or his actors comfort with English make the english version clunky and stilted. In Aguirre, the Wrath of God, the voice actor doing the English for Klaus Kinski can't convey the delusional desperation in the closing speech to the monkeys on the drifting raft the way Kinski's voice can.
Interestingly, I recently bought Almodovar's Women on Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. It defaults to a dubbed version, so every time I watch it, I have to reconfigure my AppleTV to play the Spanish, but add english subtitles (a setting that I have to back out when done because it screws up all my other films). Its funny because several of the characters in the film are actors that do voice dubbing, and there are several scenes where they are dubbing an American film into Spanish. Translating that to a english language film it seems like she is dubbing an English language film into English. kind of absurd.
This is so true. I have a decently fast connection (75mbps) and Netflix's own speed test tells me the pipe really is that fat. YouTube can play 1080p60fps content without breaking a sweat. But Netflix is always blurry af.
I tried firefox Chrome edge and even the native windows app. The quality is always lesser than what you can get on YouTube.
It's the same on Android. I think it doesn't even show me 720p on my 1440p phone. Even when I pre-download something so the network strength is not an issue.
On the other hand, Amazon prime content is crispy clear 1080p most of the times.
Other browsers are at a lesser resolution, I believe it was 720p but that could be wrong.
Edit: yup, 720p on everything except IT.
Up to 720p on Windows, Mac, and Linux
Up to 1080p on Chrome OS
Internet Explorer up to 1080p
Microsoft Edge up to 4K*
Mozilla Firefox up to 720p
Opera up to 720p
Safari up to 1080p on Mac OS X 10.10.3 or later
As I said, the weird part is that their is no improvement in quality even if you pre-download the content.
I understand that there are business and licensing reasons for that, but it is still a bummer to use a much inferior second rate version of the website.
I generally found that buying a season pass on iTunes typically gives you episodes as soon as they come out. They often offer shows in the original version and with German subtitles/audio. In original versions, the shows get released in parallel with the US. And if there's something missing, I use an US iTunes account (Apple TV 4 permits quick account switching).
Because apparently fuck japanese shows, both ways (right holder side and distributor side).
Netflix is getting better at this game, but worldwide same time release is still more of a miracle than a standard procedure. If it ever gets release outside of japan in the first place.
Got burned once when my flatmate downloaded family guy and we got "mail" by an attorney of 20th century fox...
But yes, I got Netflix and Amazon Prime too. They simply don't have everything in every language.
Why? You have to get through tons of ads, have to hope they are of decent quality, etc. With BT I download, and in about 5 minutes I have the whole thing in HD.
All streaming in HD in about 5 seconds.
> All streaming in HD in about 5 seconds.
Yeah, until it's not. I mean sure, 20 seconds of low quality is not the end of the world. But there is no reason it should be that crappy. And they are competing against easy and free, having only "moral high ground" as the competitive advantage. So at the very least, they shouldn't be worse.
I literally never have 20 seconds of low quality on Netflix et al. It is sharp HD from the moment that I start streaming (UnityMedia with 200 MBit/s downstream).
Example: I just watched "Dark" and it defaulted to English dub, but it just took a second to switch it to German with English subtitles.
(Being Dutch, I am used to having subtitles, so for some reason I prefer English subtitles over audio only. I guess that I have to concentrate less with subtitles.)
Plus the connection is not very good for streaming, so torretning is the route to go. We tried cable, but the number of adverts and the length was insane (I'm originally from the UK, I seem to recall being annoyed at the sheer quantity of ads when have visited the US as well)
Even worse is although most films at the cinema come out dubbed in our language or at the very least with subtitles, Netflix doesn’t have any content in our language or subtitles. It does have an option for Russian, but most people under 40 don’t speak it.
I wrote above about why this is, and you're right, it is artificial, but it has nothing to do with technology.