Are Netflix and Facebook working together?

Netflix has clearly become the dominating force in DVD rental and Online Streaming company in the United States, beating out former competitor Blockbuster. Facebook has over a billion users. With other online streaming sites beginning to give Netflix some trouble recently, they have been trying to do everything to improve their site and system. A couple of weeks ago, Netflix began to allow their customers to connect their account to their Facebook and have friends recommendations available to them. As seen below, the Netflix and Facebook connection is set up in two different places. One shows “Friends’ Favorites” which has the highest rated movies and TV shows and the other displays “Watched By Your Friends.”



Yes, this does require to connect the two sites, but Netflix did a good job of keeping this idea strictly on Netflix, and by no means posting anything on the user’s Facebook timeline. Netflix has been trying to integrate Facebook and this idea for a while, but the Video Protection Privacy Act (VPPA) did not allow Netflix to share someone’s rental history express approval or a police warrant. Fortunately for Netflix, Congress passed a bill last December to accommodate the integration of Facebook. Allowing for Netflix to use Facebook is huge for the company, because people are always looking for good shows and movies to watch so this can help out a lot.


Netflix, as one of our other bloggers posted a couple days ago, has been looking for ways to improve, even though they are the dominant force in the streaming network. Since they beat out Blockbuster in the past, they have to realize that History tends to repeat itself. Looking at all of the free streaming online services for both video and music, companies need to have certain characteristics that will separate them and be beneficial enough for the user that they would pay for their services. Netflix has been changing its website very often in order to satisfy their customers’ needs, and adding this element of connecting to Facebook is simply another step to make Netflix as good as it can be. What will they do next?


5 thoughts on “Are Netflix and Facebook working together?

  1. I thought that this was a very interesting blog post. I never thought about how helpful it would be to have a Facebook integration into Netflix. I’m thinking about the amount of times that I ask my friends for good tv/movie recommendations on Netflix, and this would definitely help to alleviate those problems, as you asking your friends would already be integrated into the website.

  2. This is a smart move on the part of Netflix. Linking Facebook is a great way to get more recommendations from people you are friends with, people who you usually share a lot in common with, and people whose opinions you usually respect. However, part of me does find this a little strange and invasive because you are sharing a lot of your personal life when you let people know what you watch, which can often be private. I also thought this post brought up an interesting look into how internet sites will have to work more and more with the government to make sure they are following laws about privacy in the future. Online websites will have to work with and depend on the decisions that members of Congress and other government officials make.

  3. I can see why Netflix would want to integrate Facebook an use their data. Netflix’s data resources are what allowed it to beat Blockbuster and Wal-Mart when they were in compeition. This would increase switching costs for the customers and strengthen Netflix’s business. Great use of media!

  4. It’s funny, the thing I was thinking about the whole time while reading this article was the lecture on Dell’s disintermediation method of cutting out the middle man. Except now, Netflix has used Facebook to cut out the human interaction/conversation of asking a buddy what movie he or she recommends (hurray! less social interaction!). Interesting and current blog post, as I believe this will soon be a necessary tool for most such businesses.

  5. Interesting post. I think that pooling friends’ recommendations to enhance a Netflix experience is great. I would like to be able to choose which friends to follow for recommendations. I can see the downside being that if I like strange movies that my friends could tell what I’m watching.

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