Paying for tube

Posted on January 5, 2011 by

I have had an account with Zip.ca for about four years, and kelly-yoyoKelly and I have borrowed 469 DVDs from them in that time. It works reasonably well but for one thing: we have a long list of wants, so they rarely send the thing we want most.

So at the tail end of the holidays I looked into Netflix streaming possibilities. They offer unlimited viewage for $8 monthly. The main delivery system, weirdly enough, is our Wii, but we can also watch things on our pods. They have The Life of Mammals, which we have been wanting to watch again, so I took them on the free month’s trial.

Their overall selection, though, makes skim milk look like cream.

We have a hundred things on our Ziplist. The bulk of these are BBC series and foreign films. Netflix lists 90% of what we want as unavailable. They are a fairly new thing here in Canada, and my assumption is their list will improve over time.

If they built up a decent library of TV on DVD, I could be very happy. For me, having my cake and eating it too means getting things legally at a decent price, having them available on demand so I can rewatch my favorite stuff, commercial-free, whenever I want, and as much as possible not buying piles of glossy packaging and DVDs that could one day be as obsolete as Betamax tapes. I know that’s a lot to ask for eight bucks a month.

And certainly the selection hasn’t stopped us from watching stuff: Blue Planet: Seas of Life (which actually qualifies as research for me), two eppies of Life of Mammals, and a morbid double feature on New Year’s Eve: The Buddy Holly Story followed by La Bamba. And they do have the first three seasons of Farscape, and Fantastic Mr. Fox.

So far, it has been a partially successful experiment. I am wondering, though–does anyone know the scuttle on whether and when the selection ought to improve?

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