Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

The Netflix Linux Conjecture: How Netflix snubs the Linux comunity

Filed under
Linux
Interviews
Web

Netflix has a feature that allows members to stream movies directly to their PCs. To accomplish this, they use Microsoft’s Silverlight technology. Silverlight is basically a web-application framework that provides functions similar to that of Adobe Flash.

Now, with that out of the way, let me give you the gist of the conversation between myself and Mr. Swasey:

ME: Hello, I am a freelance writer for Techrepublic (CNET), Linux.com, and Ghacks.net and I get a LOT of readers asking why Netflix does not support Linux. I plan on doing an article on this very subject and was wondering if I could get your official statement on this very subject.

Steve: Jack, Netflix wants to be ubiquitous on any screen you want to watch TV shows and movies on and we’re working to get on as many platforms as we can. However, Linux currently does not have a Microsoft Silverlight plug-in that’s comparable with Netflix playback. Please let me know if you have other questions.

ME: Steve, Have you looked into Moonlight yet? It is a collaboration between Novell and Microsoft http://www.go-mono.com/moonlight/ With this plugin you are able to view Silverlight content on Linux. This works as a Firefox plugin and works quite well. I can even go to the Microsoft Silverlight site and view content with this plugin. With that being said, how can you not support this when Microsoft itself allows the streaming of their content using the Moonlight plugin? Thanks for your input on this. It will make a very widely read and anticipated article as there are a LOT of Linux users out there who feel they’ve been shunned with services like yours.

rest here




re: Netflix snubs the Linux comunity

Yeah, all 197 of them should have their mom's cancel their subscriptions.

nope

198, I'm one of them. lol

Big Bear

I love it when companies

I love it when companies practice OS discrimination. You can't ride on this bus because you use Linux.

It's simply business

It's not discrimination - it's simply business.

There just isn't enough Linux users (kidding aside) for them to worry about.

With the economy doing some major sucking, you can bet your last free Unoobtu CD that if there were enough Linux Desktop users to be profitable, Netflix would do so.

So although the original article writer claims there's a HUGE number worldwide, I'm afraid real life data doesn't back that up.

Of course you could always try and get Linux users classified as handicapped - then you got some weight to shove around with your discrimination accusations.

well

Yes, it is business...to a degree.

but, no business, especially one so involved in tech to deliver a service or product intentionally limits the potential number of customers that could be paying customers.

Tech is ALWAYS in flux. To say they don't want to provide access to as many potential paying customers as possible when it is an issue that is addressed pretty easily and not expensively, as the offers to make it Linux compatible while maintaining their DRM concerns has been offered to them.

I don't know about you, but if somebody offered my business a way to access more paying customers from a wider tech base at low to no cost while still maintaining my content standards, I'd jump for it. Like you said, it's just business and more customers paying for Netflix service is more business.

I can't agree that in the Netflix situation that it's "simply business" when so much is to be gained and nothing lost by making a product/service available to more people, but yet they still don't want to do it.

When it comes to web delivered content, who cares what OS is on the clients computer as long as it is able to carry said content in a way that preserves the requirements?

Linux can be made capable of doing that, at little or no cost to Netflix.

Sorry, sounds like the "good ole boy" club at it again.

Big Bear

Crystal Ball

"Linux can be made capable of doing that, at little or no cost to Netflix."

So do you have inside corporate knowledge or did you use the Linux fanboy wishing well to get that tidbit?

I'm guessing you have no real facts and are simply regurgitating the standard fanboy answer.

Do you really know all about Netflix's technical infrastructure? Their technical staff? Their programmers? Their contract specifics with all the movie distributors requiring DRM? Did you put together a spreadsheet on the costs to add that little feature for 198 customers? Did you factor in the maintenance costs for both the back and front ends? And don't forget customer support - did you add in the training to get your customer support staff up to speed? And which flavour of Linux will you support? Which desktop? Which hardware platform?

Do you really think that Netflix is such a stupid company that if it was indeed "little to no cost" to add even a few thousand users they wouldn't be jumping all over it? They have after all won numerous business accolades for their business design, their packaging and distribution methods, their customer UI, etc. So of course such a company would always be on the look out to squeeze out even a few more pennies in profit.

And that's the keyword, PROFIT. If all the factors on this "little decision" don't even show a glimmer of profit, why would they go to a "not so little expense" in adding it?

Your logic is flawed beyond reason.

I'm afraid you're wrong Big Bear, it is simply business, and I'm quite sure the numbers were not in favour of supporting such a tiny, fickle, whiny, "free as in beer" group that the Linux users are known to be.

"So do you have inside

"So do you have inside corporate knowledge or did you use the Linux fanboy wishing well to get that tidbit?"

read the actual article and you will see that it was referenced that offers were made by developers to help create exactly that software.

Outside of being argumentative and snide, you might try to pay attention, you may actually learn something.

and while we're discussing business motivations, tell us with your inside knowledge why any business would not want to have access to the widest pool of customers possible?

Do you know something you're not letting the rest of us know or are you still being an apologist for companies who would rather have no competition than provide a better product and stand on it's own merits?

You spend a lot of time complaining and making personally derisive comments about people who post in favor of Linux yet you don't make a case of your own except the typical corporate shill of "that's the way we do it" which is just BS.

I make no apologies for being a Linux and FOSS 'fanboy" because unlike others who can't make something work due to them having some corporation dumb it down for them and hold their hand for their own protection, I have had Linux installed on Servers and desktops for over 5 years in various business, school and home user environments and getting things done quite nicely.

I speak based on first hand experience.

I run Linux and FOSS in business successfully, how about you?

Big Bear

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

More in Tux Machines

Openwashing: Facebook, Microsoft/Adobe and More

Hyperthreading From Intel Seen as Dodgy, Buggy

  • Intel Hyper Threading Performance With A Core i7 On Ubuntu 18.04 LTS
    Following the news yesterday of OpenBSD disabling Intel Hyper Threading by default within its OS over security concerns and plans to disable Simultaneous Multi Threading for other processors/architectures too, here are some fresh Intel HT benchmarks albeit on Ubuntu Linux. The OpenBSD developer involved characterized HT/SMT as "doesn't necessarily have a positive effect on performance; it highly depends on the workload. In all likelihood it will actually slow down most workloads if you have a CPU with more than two cores." So here are some benchmarks using a current-generation Intel Core i7 8700K six-core processor with Hyper Threading.
  • SMT Disabled by Default in -current
  • OpenBSD Will Disable Intel Hyper-Threading To Avoid Spectre-Like Exploits
    OpenBSD, an open source operating system that focuses on security, announced that it will disable Intel’s Hyper-Threading (HT) feature so that attackers can no longer employ Spectre-like cache timing attacks.
  • Intel’s hyperthreading blocked on OpenBSD amid hints of new Spectre-like bugs
    The maintainer of open source Unix-like operating system, OpenBSD, has announced that it will disable hyperthreading on Intel CPUs because of security concerns. It claims that simultaneous multithreading creates a potential new attack vector for Spectre-like exploits, and plans to expand its disabling of multithreading technologies to other chip manufacturers in the near future.

Programming/Development: ISO C++, Rust, FBGraphics and So-called 'DevOps'

  • Trip Report: C++ Standards Meeting in Rapperswil, June 2018
    A couple of weeks ago I attended a meeting of the ISO C++ Standards Committee (also known as WG21) in Rapperswil, Switzerland. This was the second committee meeting in 2018; you can find my reports on preceding meetings here (March 2018, Jacksonville) and here (November 2017, Albuquerque), and earlier ones linked from those. These reports, particularly the Jacksonville one, provide useful context for this post. At this meeting, the committee was focused full-steam on C++20, including advancing several significant features — such as Ranges, Modules, Coroutines, and Executors — for possible inclusion in C++20, with a secondary focus on in-flight Technical Specifications such as the Parallelism TS v2, and the Reflection TS.
  • Proposal for a staged RFC process
    I consider Rust’s RFC process one of our great accomplishments, but it’s no secret that it has a few flaws. At its best, the RFC offers an opportunity for collaborative design that is really exciting to be a part of. At its worst, it can devolve into bickering without any real motion towards consensus. If you’ve not done so already, I strongly recommend reading aturon’s excellent blog posts on this topic. The RFC process has also evolved somewhat organically over time. What began as “just open a pull request on GitHub” has moved into a process with a number of formal and informal stages (described below). I think it’s a good time for us to take a step back and see if we can refine those stages into something that works better for everyone. This blog post describes a proposal that arose over some discussions at the Mo
  • C gfx library for the Linux framebuffer with parallelism support
    FBGraphics was made to produce fullscreen pixels effects easily with non-accelerated framebuffer by leveraging multi-core processors, it is a bit like a software GPU (much less complex and featured!), the initial target platform is a Raspberry PI 3B and extend to the NanoPI (and many others embedded devices), the library should just work with many others devices with a Linux framebuffer altough there is at the moment some restrictions on the supported framebuffer format (24 bits).
  • 16 blogs and newsletters to follow for DevOps practitioners

Brave/Mozilla News

  • Deterministic Firefox Builds
    As of Firefox 60, the build environment for official Firefox Linux builds switched from CentOS to Debian. As part of the transition, we overhauled how the build environment for Firefox is constructed. We now populate the environment from deterministic package snapshots and are much more stringent about dependencies and operations being deterministic and reproducible. The end result is that the build environment for Firefox is deterministic enough to enable Firefox itself to be built deterministically.
  • Brave Launches User Trials for Opt-In Ads That Reward Viewers
    We’ve been busy building our new Basic Attention Token (BAT) platform, which includes a new consent-based digital advertising model that benefits users, publishers, and advertisers. Our first phase started last Fall with the integration of BAT into Brave Payments, and enabled users to anonymously distribute contributions to their favorite publishers and creators.
  • Get Paid For Watching Ads: Brave Browser Announces Opt-in Trials
    Brave, the web browser which garnered a huge fan following, predominantly for its ad blocking feature, and depriving advertisers of confiscating private data by blocking trackers is in the news again. And this time, users can earn some cash. In a blog post, Brave announced that it will be conducting voluntary testing of their new ad model in which they will showcase at least 250 pre-packaged ads to users who will sign up for their early access version. Thus, offering a small amount of money in the form of micropayments.