Short post on this, solely because it was brought up by a friend:
Why do we still pay to be able to play on Xbox live and why do people defend it so vigorously? Not only do we pay for XBox Live, the price was just hiked up $10 for no real reason at all. Is it because of Last.FM? Well, I don't use that so if so you can have that back. Is it because of Netflix? My iphone, my laptop, my computer, my PS3, and pretty soon my 3DS will support Netflix and I don't pay extra for it. I already pay to use Netflix as it is, why are we paying Microsoft? Do you think that paying for Xbox Live means you are getting enhanced security, because you aren't...paying for XBL and not paying for PSN has nothing to do with hacks or infrastructure. This is a horse that I've beat for years and defenders never give good reasons as to why.
Sometimes you'll hear "because we get party chat and all the xbox live video content". Again, how about you take that back? I don't want your crappy Zune store, I don't use Last.FM, I don't give a crap about any of your original (and bad) video content. If I am seeing ads for cars, food products, the army, and whatever else shows up why exactly do we fit the bill the at the end of the day? I wish Microsoft would just let people play online and use the features in the box, not gas tax us to death.
My friend, whom I mentioned previously, is getting a free Xbox 360 because of the deal Microsoft has when you buy a new Windows 7 PC with a student account. When I mentioned he'll have to get XBox Live to even play online he asked me why and I had no real explanation but the real sad thing? Neither does Microsoft. Take all your other junk back Microsoft. I thought paying the extra $10 for games this generation went towards stuff like that? Apparently not, but xbot fanboys keep defending it and the rest of us (yes, I'm including myself in there) just conform and move along. Why not have gold give you exclusive access to ESPN and whatever else they want to add. Making it to where I have to pay money to even have full access to a title I already paid $60+ or making me pay to watch Netflix...which I already pay for? I would say we can change it by making our voices heard and actually effecting XBL by refusing to pay and dropping subscriptions, but no one would do that all...so I guess we're doomed. Either take the lumps and don't know why or play only on every other gaming system out there that lets me play online for free...I mean that only leaves me with my PC, 3DS, PSP, PS3, DS, and iphone......