Watching Movies on Facebook is for Chumps

Movies on Facebook - The Anti-Social MediaWarner Bros. announced that it will beging to allow users to rent movies for streaming on Facebook. They’ll start with The Dark Knight, because it is the most perfect movie ever, and then add more.

This is the dumbest idea ever.

First of all, given the choice between a TV and a computer screen, who wants to watch a movie on their computer screen? I don’t know about you, but my laptop screen is 15″ across, and my TV is somewhere around 30″ across. TV wins right there. God help the person with a 9″ or 10″ netbook. Also, I don’t have anywhere comfortable to rest my lazy butt when watching something on my laptop. My couch however, is perfectly positioned for maximum viewing comfort.

Secondly, why would I want to deal with all the crap on Facebook while I’m watching a movie for two hours? There’s nothing like watching a movie while getting notifications, chat messages, and everything else that happens from keeping Facebook open for two hours.

Finally, who the hell goes on Facebook to watch movies? Sure I might watch a video shared by a friend, but typically those are hilarious two minutes clips made by someone else. There is nothing social about watching a movie compressed onto your computer screen and streaming through Facebook. It’s just watching a movie, but you’re paying for it a different way.

Who does Warner Bros. expect to pay $3 to rent a movie for 48 hours to watch on their computer? You can stream thousands of movies from Netflix for $8 a month, and you can rent the same movie from Redbox for $2. This is an obvious attempt to earn more money from direct sales, but without offering anything of value to the consumer except to watch the movie in a crappy, compressed video format on a smaller screen.

Would you watch a movie on Facebook? Would you pay $3 to do so? Would you not be annoyed by the constant notifications and chat messages? I want to know what kind of sucker person actually wanted this crap.

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20 Responses to “Watching Movies on Facebook is for Chumps”

  1. Nick Mendler March 9, 2011 at 9:11 am #

    Warner Brothers and the other large studios are scared that Netflix will become the next Itunes and dictate the movie industry and change standards hints the move to Facebook. You are absolutely correct in that Facebook isn’t the right medium for a streaming movie system but they want to try and even out the pie and Facebook and Warner Brothers I am sure don’t mind the extra revenue…..

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 8:24 am #

      I get they want that profit. But the 30 percent% lose from iTunes is no different than the 30% they lose to Facebook.

      • Nick Mendler March 10, 2011 at 8:55 am #

        It isn’t so much the 30% lose as they know that is going to happen it is more the balance of power. Either way from the things I hear coming from the Facebook execs we won’t be needing email or websites in the future so just interesting how much of a advertising and business model it has turned into. Great blog keep it up, need some dark humor and snarkiness every once in a while.

  2. Jon-Erik Lido March 9, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    I still wonder why anyone would ever want a cell phone that has no keyboard, gets poor battery life, has poor audio quality, causes ridiculous auto-correct shenanigans, is ergonomically shaped like a brick, requires that you not touch the antenna in the wrong way… but hey, it lets you smash spherical birds into blocks! Just what I’ve always needed my phone to do!

    At this point I give up at figuring out what will catch on.

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 8:40 am #

      Hey I like that phone! I want that!

  3. Liam Dennehey March 9, 2011 at 10:11 am #

    Redbox is now $2?! I watch movies to catch a break from the world, including Facebook, so I would never watch a movie and deal with notifications and people trying to chat at me.

    Speaking of what will catch on, anyone know anything about I’ve seen a lot of chatter and the maimed bunnies and graph on the launch page are intriguing. But, noone seems to know who or what it is…thoughts?

    • Jay March 9, 2011 at 10:13 am #

      Redbox is still $1 a night. I said $2 because you’d pay $2 fto have a movie for 48 hours.

  4. Morgan March 9, 2011 at 3:08 pm #

    Yeah I’m not quite seeing the advantage to streaming it on FB….

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 8:42 am #

      It’s on Facebook! What isn’t an advantage? #sarcasm

  5. Kelsie March 9, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    I wouldn’t use this. I have Netflix and if a movie isn’t available for instant streaming on Netflix and I REALLY want to watch it immediately, I’ll just rent it on iTunes or go to redbox. AND If I want to watch a movie, that’s it. If I want others to watch with me or have the ability to interrupt me while watching the movie, I’ll invite them. Facebook is great for allowing us to interact with each other in new ways, but it’s the most annoying social media tool because it’s filled with annoying and unwanted distractions and unwanted interruptions. Like game notifications, sketchy event invites and notifications, the random and annoying friend that always seems to be available to start chatting, etc. This new movie streaming feature is the icing on an already over-iced cake.

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 10:55 pm #

      Remember, there are some weird people who just really, really love icing.

  6. Simon W March 9, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

    Just a thought….much as I despise facebook, the APPARENT size of my laptop, which I use at less than arms length, and my TV which I watch from across the room, is about the same: hello “field of view”. But, whatever: convergence is coming for social media…I for one prefer the idea of specialist platforms remaining specialist, because they tend to work better. Convergence, for me, is best handled by the most powerful computer I own, the one between my ears.

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 10:54 pm #

      The field of view isn’t an issue for me. Rather, my TV is set up to be watched for long periods comfortably. My laptop, not so much.

  7. John Morrow March 9, 2011 at 9:47 pm #

    Facebook has already gone from something I used to have constantly open to something I just check once or twice a day.

    They can paint their pig gold and call it Betsy, but it’s still just Facebook, no matter how many additional “services” they tack on. I actually think it started to go off the rails when they became more interested in dumb ass games than improving the core social networking experience.

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 10:52 pm #

      Yeah, the platform has done a lot to delude the social network aspect of it. Was the world really better off after Farmville?

      • John Morrow March 10, 2011 at 10:58 pm #

        No one was better off after Farmville, except clearly the genius who built it.

        He should use his powers for good though instead of evil.

  8. Aldo Gnocchi March 10, 2011 at 9:50 pm #

    I just quote Weber, Larry (2007): “People do not want to be sold” and they really do not want to be sold on facebook.

    What has a Warner Bros. to do with someting “social” like a social network?

    Is Facebook the new distribution platform of Warner Bros.? Maybe then other huge companies will joint them on Facebook for selling their products.

    • Jay March 10, 2011 at 10:56 pm #

      Who knows. At this rate, I imagine Facebook will sell us crap and will tell everyone what we bought.

      • Aldo Gnocchi March 11, 2011 at 10:34 am #

        Well, this might be possible. Could be the end of Facebook. User in social networks do not want to buy, they want to share, interact, connect and discuss. Let’s see how Facebook develops. Have a wonderful weekend Jay!

  9. GSP March 13, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

    Is this a sign that Facebook is getting too big to properly innovate (due to focused attention from stodgy corporations) or that the social space as a whole is tapped out and once everyone can talk to each other there’s not much left to innovate on?

    Either way, new Facebook is smelling more and more like the old AOL - some great core functionality (AOL: Dialup/easy e-mail, FB: talk to people) and a huge chunk of corporate crap on top that weighs down the system to the point it collapses under it’s own weight.