Netflix Is No Longer Chill

The promise of streaming TV was that you could watch whatever you wanted, when you wanted. And for a while, that was mostly true. But recently, streaming services have started to dial back the nice-guy stuff and reel in the freebies. Companies across the stream-o-sphere are tweaking subscription tiers, raising prices, and canceling unprofitable shows. Netflix has introduced an ad-supported tier to its formerly ad-free service, and even started cracking down on people sharing account credentials. And corporate shake-ups at HBO Max have resulted in gobs of stuff being removed from that platform entirely.

This week on Gadget Lab, WIRED senior editor Angela Watercutter joins us to talk about why the streaming ecosystem has grown so complicated and hostile toward its customers.

Show Notes

Read WIRED’s series about why we hate streaming. Listen to WIRED and 1A’s series about AI, Know It All.


Angela recommends the cinematic masterpiece Cocaine Bear. Lauren recommends Marc Maron’s standup special From Bleak to Dark on HBO. Mike recommends the film EO, which is about a donkey.

Angela Watercutter can be found on Twitter @WaterSlicer. Lauren Goode is @LaurenGoode. Michael Calore is @snackfight. Bling the main hotline at @GadgetLab. The show is produced by Boone Ashworth (@booneashworth). Our theme music is by Solar Keys.

How to Listen

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