Netflix: Have they lost their customers?

As a long-standing Netflix consumer of about three-ish years, maybe more, I have suddenly lost a lot of interest in the streaming website. Why, you ask? Because Netflix have introduced a VPN proxy ban. Granted, its understandable that Netflix would only want those in the United Kingdom, for example, to access shows only available on the UK Netflix, but with the announcement, there has been a huge amount of backlash and honestly, people (including myself) are not happy about it.

The VPN proxy does not stop users from paying for Netflix. We still have to pay for it, it just means we get more for our money because the proxy masks our location and we get to access different country’s Netflix selection. I think it’s fair to say that the Netflix selection in the UK is lacking compared to the United States.

With so many people completely outraged at Netflix’s decision to block proxy servers, I wouldn’t be surprised if the popularity of the streaming website decreased dramatically.

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So with Netflix deciding to shut down proxy servers, do you think they’ll risk losing out on a lot of customers? Do you think shutting down the proxy servers was worth it? Is it really worth it when in a few months there will probably be new technology which can make consumers access all countries of Netflix again? Luckily for me, Full House, which I was marathoning on the US Netflix has just been added to the UK one!

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Apple Music: Jumping on the Streaming Bandwagon

After turning the digital market place on it’s head in 2003 when they launched the iTunes store, Apple have now caught up with the latest trend: streaming media. In 2015, Apple launched Apple Music which now competes with the huge titles of Spotify, Tidal and Rdio.

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Although Apple Music is included for free on all recent Apple products, you cannot use it unless you pay a subscription fee of £9.99 a month, and unfortunately, there isn’t a discounted student fee. However, there is a three-month free period. But like all free periods, Apple will sneakily take the money out of your account.

If Apple Music were to share the platform with fewer restrictions under a Creative Commons license, I believe that it would not have the same amount of popularity or success. Spotify already has an option for free and the reason that some people choose to pay is to get rid of the (very annoying) ads that appear every few songs. Artists who are featured on Apple Music may have some complaints on their own if a Creative Commons license were to be introduced. At the moment, thanks to Taylor Swift and some independent labels, artists are now being paid royalties during the three-month free period as Apple had originally not planned to allow this.

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My Lack of Internet Presence

I like to think I’m careful when it comes to my visibility online. I go by two different surnames, and only use Davis, the surname on my birth certificate for Linkedin (mainly because that’s the name I use when I apply for jobs). As Davis is such a common surname, and admittedly, I’m not an avid user of LinkedIn, I’m not even on the first page of results. I use the surname Killeen for the rest of my online social media, such as Facebook and Instagram, and again, I’m fairly careful with the information I put on there.

My Facebook account is private, so if you’re not friends with me on there, you’ll hopefully struggle to find very little information about me.

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I chose not to sync my phone number with Facebook either. However, when it comes to pictures (and those awful tagged ones), I’m a little more careless. There are pictures of me going out with friends, pictures of me with my family, and also pictures where the location is on so everyone can see where I was. Perfect for those holiday pictures where you’re definitely but subtly trying to brag about being away for the summer.

Despite me thinking that I’m wary with my online presence, after a quick Google images search of myself, I came across a very old and embarrassing picture of me from about four years ago, that was once my profile picture on Facebook. Considering this picture is no longer on my profile, or anywhere else for that matter, it is almost scary how this picture is still online, and it has definitely convinced me that when you share an image on the internet, it’s there forever.

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BuzzFeed: Our Guilty Pleasure

It may not be the most reliable source of news on the internet, but I can’t be the only one of us who has a guilty pleasure for reading BuzzFeed. With 200 million monthly unique visitors, a lot people all over the world are getting their fill of celebrity gossip, politics and of course, adorable animals who are better at life than you.

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Shockingly true and disappointing

If you sign up to BuzzFeed and create an account, there are opportunities to leave responses to articles, videos and of course one of the most popular aspects of the website—the quizzes. With an account on BuzzFeed, you can even go ahead and create your own articles or quizzes to generate responses from other people all over the world with similar interests to you. It may not be a conventional online community, and of course there may be some limitations with making new friendships or having your work criticised, but overall it gives teenagers and young adults a chance to enhance their writing skills and it can bring people together from all over the world to discuss their similar interests.

The best thing is even if you do not sign up to BuzzFeed, you can take a quiz and share it on your own social media or other online community, getting responses and laughs out of your friends.

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Kardashian-Jenner Takeover

There aren’t many people in today’s society that do not know who the Kardashian’s are. Over the last ten years, the Kardashian’s and Kim especially have been making names for themselves by broadcasting their lives on television through a reality show ‘Keeping Up with the Kardashians’.

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The whole family rose to fame quickly, and Kim became a worldwide sensation and is known for being mostly a TV personality but also a model, and for marrying the famous rapper Kanye West. In 2014, Kim released a game available on smartphones called Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. This game is an excellent example of audience participation because reviews and comments are used to improve the game and make changes to it. The game also offers ‘in-app purchases’ which the users spend their own money to make specific factors in the game happen. Kim Kardashian had reportedly made $74 million from the game in 2015.

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The popularity of the game and audience participation could be because of people wanting to get a taste of the ‘A-List’ life that the game offers. It also has some realistic updates which include the ability to get married in the game and even have children.

With the huge popularity of Kim’s game, it’s no surprise that the youngest of the Kardashian-Jenner family would want to get on board. In February 2016, Kendall and Kylie released their own version of the game, and of course, it is also a huge success. Which is unfortunate for Kim.

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Smartphones: Friend or Foe?

With such communication advances within the last ten years or so, it’s no surprise that convergence allows us to use our smartphones for just about anything. Gone are the days when we used our phones for texting, phone calls and that addicting game of Snake on your Nokia.

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The rise of mobile phones, and smartphones in particular is constantly growing. According to Hannah Bouckley of BT, the growing rise in smartphones have caused a decrease in compact camera sales. If you read the article you’ll see there are a couple of different reasons. Firstly, convenience is one of the main reasons. It saves having to carry around extra valuables and with the quality of smartphone cameras so high, there’s no point in having both the phone and camera. Secondly, is sharing. We can use Wi-Fi or our data and photos and videos can be shared instantly. It is only the very recent compact cameras that hold the same technology to do so.

Below are the statistics for current smartphone holders in the world, and the estimated amount for the next three years:

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With convergence allowing us to do so much on our smartphones, are the falling profits in compact cameras going to continue? What other factors about smartphone convergence could potentially cause problems for us? One that I have definitely thought about is the idea of being constantly at work. With the instant access to emails, documents and conference calling there is no end to the amount of hours we could be working in the future!

Statista

For all of our assessments; both presentations and essays, we need to use statistics. Sometimes it can be hard to come across statistics from a reliable source, since we all now know about the huge growth of internet users who believe they hold the correct information. This is why I use Statista and I would hugely recommend it to the rest of you if you do not already know about it. We even have complete access to it with our Westminster emails.

It has statistics for just about anything we need regarding the media and the internet. In fact, they hold statistics on just about any industry. As a Public Relations and Advertising student I find this website particularly helpful as I regularly have to look at social media statistics to find the best way to reach out to consumers.

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This website is helpful for all of us who need some quick facts and it is really simple to navigate and find the information you have to look for. Not only do they hold statistics for the United Kingdom, but they have data from other countries in Europe and in the United States as well. So for example, if you ever want to know what British shows that Americans like to watch, Statista has it.

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