Why Are So Many Good Shows Leaving Netflix?


With 75-plus million subscribers, Netflix is one of the most popular subscription services out there. Each month brings a new set of series and movies to Netflix, but there’s a major downside to that — popular shows and films are being pulled off the queue on a monthly basis. One Tree Hill, 30 Rock, Titanic, and Friday Night Lights were just a few of the many removed from the popular platform this month alone. And, it’s not as random as it might appear.

Why Are So Many Good Shows Leaving Netflix?

Netflix is one of the smartest platforms out there. It can recommend shows you might like before you would otherwise come across them. The Netflix team even creates hit series, like House of Cards, purely based on what they know about what users will like, from plots and themes to actors. And with success from what the platform dubbed as “Netflix Original Series,” they're using those positive results to their advantage.

But what really goes into how Netflix decides which shows to nix? It’s a combination of how much licensing rights cost and how many viewers are tuning into the show or movie. If nine seasons of One Tree Hill cost more to renew the license than it takes to create a new show, which Netflix won't have to pay fees for, it’s a simple answer from a business and profit standpoint.

If series are exclusively owned by, say, Hulu or Amazon Video, then Netflix isn't able to include it in their catalog. Ultimately, decisions to remove shows can come down to "popularity, cost, seasonal or localized factors, or availability," according to Netflix's website. So, once a TV show or movie's licensing is expiring, the Netflix team factors these variables to decide if it should be pulled.

As a viewer, I love that I can find a mix of classic series that are no longer on air blended with new hits, such as Netflix Original Series. It’s more affordable to pay a flat $7.99 per month for both as opposed to purchasing old sets of DVDs to have on hand. Even better, I can find it all through a click of my remote. And when you take into account the exclusivity factor -- you can only watch House of Cards via Netflix -- it just might be what keeps viewers subscribed. Only time will tell if a platform full of only new content is worth the monthly price for subscribers.

If a TV show or movie you love is leaving Netflix, don't panic just yet. Sometimes other streaming services will pick up the licenses once one doesn't renew, so keep an eye out on Hulu and Amazon Video to see if they're picking it up. You can also purchase the series or movie to have on hand in your home to watch at your convenience. Not sure if a movie or show is leaving the popular platform? Take a look at the Netflix social channels to keep up with new releases and non-renewals and viewers will get a notification of expiration on TV series that will expire in the next 30 days.

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