37 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Netflix
Netflix considers Canada to be a Third World country.
1. The idea behind Netflix came in 1997 after the CEO was charged $40 for a late VHS copy of Apollo 13.
2. The CEO's great-grandfather, Alfred Lee Loomis, was instrumental in winning WWII. He anticipated the Wall Street Crash of 1929 and therefore protected his considerable wealth. His funds helped establish a laboratory that became a meeting place for the world's most successful scientists, including Albert Einstein. The space allowed the development of the radar technology that helped Allies successfully carry out the invasion of Normandy.
4. In 2000, Netflix was offered to Blockbuster for $50 million. The now practically dead video rental company declined the offer. Netflix is currently worth $20 billion and is very much alive.
5. The company's revenue is estimated at $6 billion.
6. Netflix is available in nearly 50 countries.
7. The market with the highest growth is Latin America.
8. There is a record 57.4 million unique Netflix subscribers online (as of January 2015). Since one subscription allows several people to watch Netflix, the number of actual users is much bigger.
9. In the United States, for example, Netflix outranks cable TV with 33 million subscribers.
10. It's also the single largest contributor to Internet traffic in many countries. In the States, it amounts to almost one third during primetime.
11. That's why the time of the day affects video quality, with the worst time of the day being 7pm–9pm.
12. Canada is considered a Third World country by Netflix in terms of broadband internet ranking.
13. The average Netflix subscriber streams around 90 minutes a day.
14. People who have children are statistically far more likely to have a Netflix subscription.
15. Around 60% of Netflix users binge-watch shows at least every few weeks.
16. Netflix's content library takes over one petabyte of data. This is an equivalent of 1,024 terabytes or 1,048,576 gigabytes. In other words – A LOT.
17. The first video content ever put on Netflix was a test film created to inspect standard film frames. if you have an access to the US version of Netflix, type in "Example Show" and you will still find it.
18. The most watched show on Netflix is Breaking Bad.
19. In 2006, Netflix held a million-dollar contest. The challenge was to create a new, perfected video content recommendation algorithm. The film the contestants had to run through the code and successfully categorise was Napoleon Dynamite.
20. In order to maintain its success, Netflix monitors other websites to decide on next purchases. One of the websites it has on its radar is BitTorrent.
21. Netflix has over 76,000 categories, including "Cool Moustaches," "Imaginative Time Travel Movies from the 1980s," and "Mind-bending Romantic Foreign Movies".
22. These also include the special categories like April Fool's Day "Movies That Are English But Still Require Subtitles".
23. Netflix cares more about what you actually watch than what you say you do. It knows you're more likely to rate Citizen Kane high to seem more cultured, whereas in reality you've been stuck in a loop rewatching Family Guy for the past three months.
24. The starting pay at the most entry-level positions such as call centre is $18 per hour plus a free subscription to Netflix.
25. Netflix employees can take as many days off as they want. "It's about freedom and responsibility and treating people like adults," the spokesperson for Netflix said. As long as their work doesn't suffer, employees are free to have as much time off as they like (providing they arrange it in advance and don't just swan off whenever they like, of course).
26. One of the world's most wanted jobs is offered by Netflix. Netflix is willing to pay you to stay at home and watch the content they purchased and/or produced. All you have to do is tag it with words from a pool of 1,000 keywords. The process of tagging in order to improve the service's video recommendations is called Netflix Quantum Theory.
27. In the United States where the company also offers a flat rate DVD-by-mail service, Netflix employees are sworn to secrecy on the location of the DVD warehouses to avoid people dropping off DVDs at the location or trying to rob the place. Same goes for Netflix trucks, which go undercover.
28. A Netflix inspector sorts around 650 DVDs per hour. That's 5,200 DVDs per a working day.
29. Netflix uses rectangular envelopes purely for cost efficiency. USPS charges more for square ones. The difference would amount to around $225 million more if they went with the square option.
30. As of February 2015, Netflix has produced 66 original programs, including series, films, continuations, documentaries, and comedy specials.
31. Netflix purchased the licensing rights to House of Cards and brought David Fincher and Kevin Spacey on board because their movies were already very popular on Netflix.
32. Similarly, Netflix invited Jenji Kohan to produce Orange Is The New Black after her success with Weeds.
33. In late 2013, Netflix signed a landmark deal with Marvel Television to produce four live-action TV programs based on renowned Marvel superheroes. The four individual characters will get their own shows, before coming together in a mini-series, which will see them teaming up as The Defenders.
34. Adam Sandler signed a four-movie deal with Netflix because "Netflix rhymes with Wet Chicks."
35. Netflix became the first original online programming service to win a major television award such as a Golden Globe. In 2014, House of Cards' Robin Wright won Best Actress in a drama television.
36. Netflix also got a nomination for an Oscar. In 2013, it released an Egyptian-American documentary called The Square. Depicting the Egyptian Revolution of 2011, the film was directed by Jehane Noujaim and was nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the 86th Academy Awards.
37. Netflix has its own awards — The Flixies. It's a pretty lighthearted, tongue-in-cheek award show where users are invited to vote on their favourite shows. The categories are designed to reflect and celebrate the new way in which people consume entertainment online, including Best Marathon TV Show, Best Bromance, or Best Commute Shortener.