No Sony Movies on NXE's Netflix?

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Posted by Jeff (3666 posts) -
Looks like you're watching this one on your PC.
Joystiq's James Ransom-Wiley did some investigating over some changes to Netflix's Xbox 360 streaming service and stumbled onto both a troubling change to availability and the probable reason for the change.

It seems that a chunk of movies that were previously set up for streaming via the Netflix Instant Queue service recently flipped the off switch on a pile of titles, but only for Xbox 360 users. I took a gander into my queue, and sure enough, a handful of titles now say "Not available on Xbox" on them. When you load up the Netflix app on the 360, the blocked titles simply don't appear.

So what's the deal? Well, all of the unavailable videos are from Sony-owned studios, like Columbia or Sony Pictures. It's not hard to imagine that Sony eventually realized that it didn't want any of its movies on Microsoft's shiny new video streaming partnership. In fact, they might not even be finished. Some titles listed as Sony Pictures releases, like Super Size Me, are still available. Others, like Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story or An Evening With Kevin Smith, are not.

So if you're considering getting a Netflix account to prepare for tomorrow's Xbox 360 update, make sure you take this into account. Because this seems to have taken a noticeable chunk out of the Netflix offering.
#1 Posted by Jeff (3666 posts) -
Looks like you're watching this one on your PC.
Joystiq's James Ransom-Wiley did some investigating over some changes to Netflix's Xbox 360 streaming service and stumbled onto both a troubling change to availability and the probable reason for the change.

It seems that a chunk of movies that were previously set up for streaming via the Netflix Instant Queue service recently flipped the off switch on a pile of titles, but only for Xbox 360 users. I took a gander into my queue, and sure enough, a handful of titles now say "Not available on Xbox" on them. When you load up the Netflix app on the 360, the blocked titles simply don't appear.

So what's the deal? Well, all of the unavailable videos are from Sony-owned studios, like Columbia or Sony Pictures. It's not hard to imagine that Sony eventually realized that it didn't want any of its movies on Microsoft's shiny new video streaming partnership. In fact, they might not even be finished. Some titles listed as Sony Pictures releases, like Super Size Me, are still available. Others, like Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story or An Evening With Kevin Smith, are not.

So if you're considering getting a Netflix account to prepare for tomorrow's Xbox 360 update, make sure you take this into account. Because this seems to have taken a noticeable chunk out of the Netflix offering.
#2 Posted by Snoopy (40 posts) -

bummer.

#3 Posted by zoozilla (984 posts) -

That sucks.

Though I can still watch Robocop, right?  Then it wouldn't totally suck.

#4 Edited by alexl86 (634 posts) -

Makes sense that Sony wouldn't let this happen. Too bad... Still, DVD is good enough for me at this point.

Edit: Especially considering that I live in Europe and probably don't have access to this service in the first place.

#5 Posted by Fr0Br0 (3101 posts) -

Ha that's a slap in the face.

#7 Posted by MasterSplinter (636 posts) -

Unfortunately not too surprising.

#8 Posted by FoolInjection (206 posts) -

Well... this would probably be something I would take into consideration before applying for the whole Netflix for 360 thing as I have a Gold account already... however being that I live in the UK... we aren't getting this feature at all. 

Microsoft once again showing how much is loves it's brethren "across the pond".  Least they could have done is hooked us up with like the BBC iPlayer or something.

#9 Posted by Psynapse (1064 posts) -

Lol... like it matters to the Aussies... we can't even GET Netflix... Oh well

#10 Posted by Killsone (16 posts) -

Yup definitely sounds like something Sony would do good job at spotting it Jeff

#11 Posted by BawlZINmotion (714 posts) -

Could Sony finally be gathering all its subsidiaries into a large unified system with a single focus? Or could it just be the PS3 now has a video store with an advantage? Or both? 

#12 Posted by Jaded (21 posts) -

Ha, Sony is out-Microsofting Microsoft!  That's for all the exclusive DLC deals, MS!

#13 Posted by Vacancy009 (62 posts) -

I'm sure this is a big response to quality streaming media being viable way before Sony thought it would and they  will have trouble recouping dev costs on Blu-Ray.  The bad thing is you can still use TVersity to stream Netflix from your PC to the Xbox so your just adding a step.  They should just remove  their movies completely or allow it all, There will be other competing devices that stream content from netfilx to your TV that isn't Sony, it just wont be a console.  This move just comes accross as bad PR in my opinion.

#14 Posted by BinaryDragon (638 posts) -

Is there going to be a similar service in the UK? Hmm, seems like a missed opportunity to me.

#15 Posted by VegaDemonLord (50 posts) -

Evening With Kevin Smith titles are so funny. No lie.

#16 Posted by SilverArrows (97 posts) -

HAHA, makes sense ......... Sony should be ashamed though, not because they had to remove the Movies, because MSFT has managed to be ahead of them in delivering media, especially when so much of Sony's business revolves around media (movies and music).
Its a case of sour grapes.

#17 Posted by CodeMunki (65 posts) -

They're still available through PlayOn (themediamall.com), which has great video quality, and hulu.com and YouTube support. :)

Even so...total dick move by Sony.  They've been using Sony Studios content to push around too many other markets.  
#18 Posted by LordAndrew (14430 posts) -

Thanks for being a jerk, Sony.

#19 Posted by Double0hFor (410 posts) -

id rather buy the dvd anyways and wtach it anywhere any time

#20 Posted by j_meyer_13 (387 posts) -

Well, that's lame as hell...why should Sony care what their movie is watched on?  They still make money off of it being rented, don't they?  Then again, maybe Netflix just keeps all the money...either way, it's a dick move on Sony's part

#21 Posted by Pudge (922 posts) -

That's gay, Walk Hard was #1 on my list to watch in the NXE, and It's been on there for WEEKS. Now I might just have to spend 5 bucks on the DVD on Black Friday...

#22 Posted by dsplayer1010 (2227 posts) -

Makes sense.

#23 Posted by Meteora (5787 posts) -

Now Sony is just being desperate.

#24 Posted by AndrewB (7689 posts) -

It may make perfect sense for Sony to be such assholes in this case, but that doesn't make them any less assholes.

#25 Posted by Lilarcor (213 posts) -

That's a seriously lame thing for Sony to do. I mean, it makes sense from a business standpoint, but it's dirty as hell.

#26 Posted by JDM006 (113 posts) -

SCREW YOU SONY!!!

#27 Posted by AnEternalEnigma (285 posts) -

So that explains why "The Cable Guy" magically disappeared from my Xbox queue today.

Sony just loves making consumers happy.

#28 Posted by FoolInjection (206 posts) -

There is like an official Netflix blog up about this... Major Nelson had a link in his Twitter.  You can find it here :-    

http://blog.netflix.com/2008/11/titles-available-to-watch-instantly.html

They are hoping to have the titles licensed and back up for 360 users shortly... I'm guessing that shortly is when Microsoft fork over a couple of million to Sony for the privilege.

#29 Posted by StaticFalconar (4850 posts) -

Makes sense, I mean you can still get these movies from Netflix in the regular DVD format and play those on the 360, so I don't see all the bitching at Sony when people could be bitching at MS for advertising that they offered all of nextflix movies on demand, streamed.

Sony never promised that, MS did.

#30 Posted by RenegadeSaint (1555 posts) -

Oh man, that kinda... sucks.  Oh well, the update is still adding value to my already awesome NetFlix subscription.

I love NetFlix.

#31 Posted by AimingWandersly (179 posts) -

shacknews is reporting that this is a temporary situation and that all that's required is xbox 360 licensing for columbia pictures movies:

http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/55987

no idea as to the validity of that but check out the story.

#32 Posted by killdave (1073 posts) -

Im still shocked that the gaming system (xbox 360) managed to beat the home multi-media player (ps3) to actually steaming a large amount of HD content.

Sony screwed up again? Ah well back to watching my awesome blurays on my bluray player (ps3) I'll keep my xbox for gaming!

#33 Edited by Ironknight (129 posts) -

well ps3 does have a video store its just the fact you  pay to rent each video maybe something like play tv will hit the US and ease the pain but  if you were in Sony's shoes there is no way you would let Microsoft stream your movies

#34 Posted by MackGyver (600 posts) -

Here we have a conflict of interest. Sony isn't just in the gaming dept. It's also a movie distributor etc. Therefore Sony has a lot more to lose with this. It's called competition my friends. Since video games and movies are two different things, you would think that Sony went too far with this. But since Microsoft is introducing the new NXE with Netflix feature, it starts to make sense.

#35 Posted by radion_null (160 posts) -

I was expecting this yet I am still surprised. it may not make sense to us but it is a good business move. It's like NBC/universal offering their content exclusively through Hulu and other associated venues.

#36 Posted by GodzillaVsJapan (104 posts) -

I thought the whole idea behind this was to get access to Sony films through a 3rd party provider. Guess that backfired. Too bad Sony is being uptight about it

#37 Posted by Crono (2707 posts) -

None of the titles mentioned in this news post would stop me from trying the service... however I think I'd still like to probe deeper into the titles blacklisted before I go any further

#38 Posted by Pibo47 (3166 posts) -

Yeah. Im not surprised. But then again, sony is kinda losing so they have to resort to these tatics.

#39 Posted by jakob187 (21759 posts) -

Man, An Evening With Kevin Smith Part 1 and 2 are hilarious!!!  That's damn sad...

By the way, I'm curious for anyone who might know this (as I don't have a Netflix account and won't be finding out anytime in the near future):  do the streamed movies off subtitles?  For guys like me, we can't hear the movie without 'em.  = D
#40 Edited by PXAbstraction (352 posts) -

I find it funny how many people are holding this against Sony specifically as if this is something only they are capable of.  It sucks to be sure but anyone who thinks Microsoft wouldn't be doing the same thing if it was in the movie business and this was on the PS3 instead is kidding themselves.  This is the way companies do business in the US and has nothing to do with Sony specifically.

My guess is that the reason some titles are available while others aren't is that Sony is only able to restrict the rights on titles it owns.  Like in the games industry, often the publisher (in this case, the big movie studio) often owns the rights to the work but sometimes, the producer of that works owns it while the publisher just distributes it.  In those cases, it would be up to the producer who gets to view it how and when.  I believe Super Size Me was owned by the indie company who made it which is why its up there.

Don't get me wrong, I think this kind of this is stupid and only hurts consumers.  But the fact is the console makers don't care about consumers, they care about money and they'll do whatever they need to do to ensure they make the most of it that they can.  Sony is doing it now, Microsoft does it in other ways (lousy DRM and poor build quality) and Nintendo does it in other ways (also DRM and things like restricting resale of Wii Speak.)  They're all guilty of it in some way.

#41 Edited by Valke (72 posts) -

Like PXAbstraction said, I really can't see why people are all too surprised at this move. From a business standpoint, this is only a logical thing to do. I don't see this move as being anything different than Microsoft saying they want nothing to do with Blu-ray. You can bet that if Blu-ray were not a Sony product, an external if not internal 360 player would already be available.

EDIT: @jakob187 - Looks like you are out of luck on this one unfortunately, here's the official word from the Netflix website:

"Foreign-language titles always display subtitles in English. English language titles do not have subtitle options. None of the movies & TV episodes that you can watch instantly offer closed captioning."

#42 Posted by Milkman (17316 posts) -

Ugh, lame. But I guess it makes sense for Sony in a business stand point.

#43 Posted by Ruisu (60 posts) -

thars Uber messed up but I can't help LMFAO.

#44 Posted by KTM4444 (15 posts) -

What a cunt move.

#45 Posted by Snipes424 (120 posts) -

That sucks :( 

But to be honest, if things were reversed, Microsoft would of done the exact same thing. 
#46 Posted by Origina1Penguin (3504 posts) -

That's a dick move, but that's business for ya.

#47 Posted by Henry (23 posts) -

wow, that is such a dick move. watch, now Microsoft stops making operating systems for the Sony VIAO laptops

#48 Posted by John1912 (1970 posts) -
#49 Posted by Landon (4164 posts) -

Ya know, this is such an obvious move that I'm mad that I didn't think of it before.

#50 Posted by jangofett88 (324 posts) -

I would have been more suprised if Microsoft got away with it and used Netflix as a backdoor to get the Sony-owned movies on the 360. Oh well.

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