The Decline of Netflix


For the first time since its inception, Netflix has faced a decline in viewership (approximately 2.3%). Viewers are becoming more deterred by inflation and high prices while original Netflix content is not doing as well. Apart from hit shows like Stranger Things, along with Manifest, the $17 billion that Netflix has poured into the film industry has resulted in subpar content, with quarterly earnings going down significantly.

Towards the beginning of this decline, Netflix had plans to increase their membership quickly, with their CEO wanting to be “bullish” with the company’s future. Their revenue increased 9% soon after, but they still have not been able to regain their subscribers. 

For many people, Netflix has been a favorite streaming service for years. Changes to the platform, such as fan-favorite shows being taken off, have been noticed by many people, including students at Edison High School. 

I feel like the new subscription plan Netflix is offering, this idea of ‘Basic with Ads’, really takes away from the whole Netflix Experience

— Srinidhi Tammana '25

“I think the main reason that the Netflix membership/viewership is declining is because of Covid,” Nidhi Mudholker ‘25. “Although the craze ended earlier, people are just starting to realize that they don’t need Netflix because they can go outside now.”

With concerns evident, Netflix is not ignoring this criticism. Recently, the company introduced a new subscription plan that has a lower price, coming in at just $6.99 per month. With that decrease, though, will come a few changes to the service. Around five minutes of advertisements will play for every hour of content, and the resolution will be capped at 720p. In the United States, this plan will launch on November 3, 2022. 

“I feel like the new subscription plan Netflix is offering, this idea of ‘Basic with Ads’, really takes away from the whole Netflix Experience,” Srinidhi Tammana ‘25 said. “Netflix is known for this concept of presenting your favorite series without any ads with its simple monthly fee. By adding ads, it’s not Netflix anymore but just another Disney Plus or HBO Max.” 

This new tier might have mixed reviews when it enters the market, but Netflix is also trying to bring back the excitement of its Netflix Originals by introducing new seasons to popular shows. The best solution that Netflix now sees is to focus on improving their content, which, despite the seemingly increasing popularity of certain shows, is still not up to par for most viewers.  

Recently, Netflix has started to shrink their library of content, a loss of about 2,000 movies and TV shows since 2015, while focusing more on original content. With this new emphasis on original content, Netflix has gained 270 million hours of view time for the top 10 Netflix Originals, while only getting a little over 158 million hours of view time for the rest of the top ten content. 

Furthermore, this focus is further pressed on by Tudum, a companion website for Netflix that has extra content, behind the scenes interviews, and news, all while promoting Netflix’s brand shows and movies. This website is also paired with an annual fan event, which was hosted live this year on September 24, 2022. This event features a sneak peek at upcoming shows, games, and movies, presented by famous actors and creators.