For a while there, it seemed like Netflix was poised to doom all those brick-and-mortar video stores. It was cheap, it was speedy, it had a huge selection… but that bubble seems to have burst, and the newest news is the million customers Netflix has lost since raising its prices this year. And its plummeting stock price. And lots and lots of customer ire: “Dramatically increasing prices in the 2011 economy not only shows incredible arrogance and insensitivity, it demonstrates that Hastings and Netflix is completely investor focused,” Paul Kiser wrote for Technorati. You know things are bad when SNL is parodying your ham-fisted attempt to apologize to your customers.
So if you’re one of those annoyed by longer DVD turnarounds, 40 percent price increases, or just looking for some human-to-human interaction (and personalized recommendations), now might be the perfect time to cancel your Netflix subscription. Today, in fact: because if you do, and you bring some sort of proof (screen shot, print out) to Video Americain, the local independent video store much beloved around town, they will give you five free rentals. “Down with big red greed!” they proclaim. Offer valid October 7 only.