Why Is The Netflix Movie Catalog Shrinking?

Does it seem to you like the Netflix movie library is shrinking, but you assumed it was all in your head? Well maybe it isn’t and Netflix is truly cutting back its movie library each month and not adding more, or at least as many, movies back on. It seems that it is all part of the company’s plan to add and subtract, and it seems there is an independent body that is tracking the full Netflix catalogue.

Netflix is the premier service for streaming movies and television, and there are reboots and reunions aplenty coming out to lure in new viewers, according to a previous report by the Inquisitr. There are also some Netflix hacks and fixes to check out, including new movies that you might not be able to check out otherwise. There are certain Netflix codes that can be added in, to figuratively “break in” to the rest of the library.

Vanity Fair says that a company called AllFlicks keeps a running tab on the movies and television shows available on streaming services, and they are proof that the numbers on Netflix have dropped over the last year for movies. In January 2014, Netflix had 6,494 movies and 1,609 TV shows, As of last week, those numbers have dropped to 4,335 movies and 1,197 shows—a 33 percent drop in movies, and a 26 percent drop in TV in just about two years.

But the bigger question is why would a service, known for its streaming library, be shrinking? The main reason: Netflix prides itself primarily on exclusivity. If a movie can be found elsewhere, Netflix would rather let it go, and have viewers watch it there. Netflix wants titles it can license, and would rather let go of the ones it can’t.

Netflix does not release customer metrics, Netflix Chief Content Officer offered some thoughts about theater distribution and who gets what movies. For example the Idris Elba movie Beasts of No Nation had three million viewers in the last year. Netflix and Amazon, with its Prime service, cleaned up last year at the Sundance Film Festival. Other distributors are envious of the power of Netflix and Amazon.

“We are shooting bullets, but Netflix and Amazon are using machine guns.”

Shows like Orange Is the New Black and House of Cards give Netflix a lot more credibility than carrying movies that can be seen on other streaming services.

The Business Insider reports that when an exclusive title is going to expire, Netflix would rather cut them loose than re-up. Newer movies have more value to Netflix and there are always new movies available to add. But Netflix subscribers might start paying more for less, which also seems to be in the Netflix plan. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings says to keep up a high end catalog, customers might have to pay more.

“The more we have incredible value, the more we have amazing originals, then we are going to be able to ask consumers for more to be able to invest more.”

The overhead is obviously higher on movies made for Netflix by Netflix, and so Netflix customers are going to have to be expected to pony up a bit more money.

Are you willing to pay Netflix more for less movies? Are you happier to have more original programming or would you like to see more movies on Netflix?

[Photo by Pascal Le Segretrain/Getty Images]