We hardly ever got outÂ to the movies anymore. My daughter still goes, and ocassionally one of us will go with her. But most often she goes with friends. Since we have a big screen at home, I much prefer DVD rentals. For years we’ve been faithful customers of locally owned video stores such as Figuerido’s and Video Experience (when they had an outlet in Old Town.
But a few months back we decided to finally try Netflix because it finally seemed more convenient and a time saver where time has become such a precious commodity. It worked pretty well. We liked browsing online and putting movies in to the queue, waiting for a movie to arrive, and the ease of just plopping it back in the mail when we were done watching it. But often the timing was off. Movies arrived when we couldn’t really watch them. Or our mood changed and we wanted something else. Or the movie we really wanted would not get sent, while third or fourth choices kept arriving. Or we needed one for our daughter to watch while we watched something else. So, often we would end up going to a local store anyway.
And right after we started using Netflix I read this post in TechCrunch about why Michael Arrington was switching to Blockbuster. The idea that you could return a movie at any Blockbuster store and get one off the shelf for free, and still get credit from the online store so they could release another in your queue sounded great. So, after a few months with Netflix we switched to Blockbuster. Fortunately, there’s a store nearby and between work and home, so if we do want to returen a movie to store and pick up something else it’s pretty convenient.
As much as I like to support local buisness, I admt there are times when service, selection cost and convenience just outweigh loyalty. The local stores just can’t compete with the online services. Eventually, when movies and TV are delivered directly over the Internet they brick and mortar stores will be left even further behind, I’m afraind.