Thoughts on television shows

Kanopy: Your Ticket to Free Movie Nights Courtesy of Your Library Card!

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So, I’ve stumbled upon this absolute gem of a service, and I just had to share it with you all. It’s called Kanopy, and get this – it’s like finding a secret door in your library that leads to a wonderland of films!

Now, let me set the scene. For those of you who follow this blog, you know that I’m on this crazy movie-a-day challenge for an entire year (I know, ambitious, right?), and just when I thought my wallet was going to stage a protest, Kanopy swooped in like a superhero. If it weren’t for this fantastic service, I’d probably be surviving on instant noodles to fund my film addiction!

Kanopy isn’t your run-of-the-mill streaming service. Oh no, it’s more like a cinephile’s dream come true, minus the hefty price tag. Thanks to the fairy godmothers and godfathers at your local public library or university, you can access thousands of films. Yes, you read that right – thousands!

Now, you might be thinking, “What’s the catch?” But here’s the kicker – there isn’t one! If you have a library card or are part of a university, you’re pretty much set. Just sign up, log in, and bam! You’re in movie heaven.

The selection? Oh, it’s like a buffet of cinematic delights. From those artsy indie films that make you feel intellectually superior, to the classic hits that remind you of the good old days. And documentaries? Kanopy’s got them in spades. You can practically hear the voice of your high school history teacher saying, “See, learning can be fun!”

What I love most about Kanopy is the absence of mainstream, commercial noise. It’s like walking into a boutique film shop where each movie is handpicked for its uniqueness. And the best part? No annoying ads interrupting your movie nights. That’s right, ad-free streaming! You can munch on your popcorn in peace.

And for the parents out there, Kanopy Kids is a lifesaver. It’s a safe, educational, and entertaining haven for the little ones. You can finally take a breather while your kids explore a world of learning and fun.

But remember, with great power comes great responsibility. Your access might be limited to a certain number of films per month, so choose wisely. It’s like being on a movie diet – good for your cinematic health!

So yeah, Kanopy is a hidden treasure for movie lovers. It’s easy to use, free with your library card or university affiliation, and offers a diverse range of films. So, grab your library card, pop some corn, and prepare for a movie marathon that won’t cost you a dime.

Catch you on the flip side,
Roger 👋

P.S. Don’t forget to thank your librarians next time. They’re the real MVPs for signing up for this service! 📚🎥🍿

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On Customer Churn

Couple Watching TV

I read an interesting report about a topic I’ve written about a couple of times on the blog, especially in regards to cutting down the number of streaming services to which I’m subscribed. And that is: Customer Churn. I didn’t even know there was a name for this.

Customer Churn is when people subscribe to a streaming service such as Netflix, AppleTV+, or Hulu, watch the content they want to see, and then, when they’re done, ditch the service and move on to the next service. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’m guilty of doing this. When there are several shows I want to see on a service, I’ll subscribe to that service for a month or two, binge-watch the shows and then cancel my subscription. In fact, I just canceled my Disney+ subscription because I’d finished the show/films I wanted to see there for the time being.

Apparently, the streaming companies loathe this practice, especially given that in the United States, customer churn rate is about 37%, which is a lot higher than I thought. I found it also interesting that half of Gen Z and Millennials report that they had switched streaming services over the past six months.

From what I could gather, people who are more comfortable with technology are more apt to engage in churn — this is to say, people who are tech-savvy enough to hop online, log in to their account, and cancel their subscription as compared to someone who is elderly or non-tech savvy and may find that whole process too daunting.

man looking at receipt

Another reason for churn is cost, which is certainly the case for me. I couldn’t afford to subscribe to every streaming service out there and pay their sometimes rather high monthly fee. The high monthly payment is the reason I dumped cable so long ago. It also makes little sense for me to watch a series for a month or two while paying for other streaming services that I’m not watching.

Streamer services are desperate to keep customers on their books while more and more customers are engaging in churning. The companies may just have to get used to the fact that people are going to watch a show and then, when finished, cancel their subscription until a new show or new season arrives. I suppose an alternative would be to stop offering monthly subscriptions and only provide yearly ones. If this ever happened with any of my streaming services, I would probably just cancel them entirely. Then, if there were anything I really wanted/needed to watch, I’d simply rent it on AppleTV or Amazon Prime Video.

I think if the streaming services want to minimize churn, they’ll have to put out regular, more engaging content to keep people engaged. For example, one service I tend to keep all year long (at least for the moment) is HBO Max. This is because they’ve been featuring a steady flow of new films and shows each month. For a while, they even showed first-run movies at the same time they were hitting the theaters. So I’ll probably be sticking with them for the time being.

So if you’ve decided to engage in this customer churning practice, know that you probably won’t be seen favorably by the streaming service. But perhaps they just have to get used to the fact that people are no longer happy paying for a year-round subscription, especially if they’re only watching content for a month or two.

How about you? Are you a “churner”?

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Altered Carbon Netflix series – off to a great start

Altered carbon

I just started watching a new series on Netflix called Altered Carbon. This is an adaptation of a cyberpunk science fiction novel written in 2002 by Richard K. Morgan. I read the novel about 15 years ago, and it was one of those stories that stuck in my head. I was super-pumped when I heard that the book was finally going to be made into a series. It’s a Netflix original, so that’s the only way to watch it at the moment.

I’ve watched only the first three episodes and thus far, I love it! The story takes place in a future world where human personalities can be stored digitally and downloaded into new bodies (the new bodies are referred to as “sleeves”).

Of course, the more money you have, the better body (sleeve) you can obtain.

Most people have implants in their spinal columns called “stacks” which store all their memories. If their body dies, their “stack” can be stored indefinitely and then implanted into a new body. If your stack is somehow damaged, you’re dead for good. However, the very rich are able to keep backup copies of their stacks in remote storage, which they update regularly. This way, even if their stack is somehow destroyed, they can be “resleeved”.

The story revolves around our hero, Takeshi Kovacs (played by Joel Kinnaman), an accused terrorist who’s been “on ice” for the past 250 years and has now been revived in a new body. He was brought back (resleeved) in order to find the murderer of a very, very rich man named Laurens Bancroft. It was believed that Laurens Bancroft committed suicide, but the recently revived Bancroft believes that he was murdered, and has hired Kovacs in the hope that Kovacs will find his killer.

…and thus the story begins.

I’m definitely looking forward to watching the next seven episodes in this series (the first season consists of 10 episodes). I think this is a great start to the series and can’t wait to see where they’re going to go with it. If enjoy cyberpunk, science fiction or dystopian stories and are a Netflix subscriber, you might want to check out Altered Carbon.

Or you can check out the original novel HERE

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