Binge viewing: Netflix, Amazon, iTunes fuel the frenzy

Published: Tuesday, Feb. 5 2013 7:00 a.m. MST

The February 2013 issue of GQ magazine profiles Hastings. In the article, writer Nancy Hass outlined Netflix’s plans to release new original content later this year with all-episodes-at-once rollouts that are conducive to binge viewing: “Within months of (the ‘House of Cards’) debut, two other series, ‘Orange Is the New Black’ and ‘Hemlock Grove,’ an adaptation of the supernaturally tinged novel, will also stream exclusively on Netflix. And in the spring, Netflix will debut the long-awaited season four of ‘Arrested Development,’ the beloved series that Fox canceled seven years ago.”

Netflix isn’t the only company looking to capitalize on viewers’ binging habits. As Marcus Wohlsen detailed Friday for Wired, iTunes and Amazon are allowing consumers who purchase a season pass for the popular British drama “Downton Abbey” to watch the final three episodes of season three before the shows even premiere in the U.S.

“Since Netflix doesn’t sell ads around its shows,” Wohlsen wrote, “the all-at-once release of the entire season (of ‘House of Cards’) is a marketing gambit that lets the company present itself as in touch with 21st-century viewing habits. … The decision has led to will-you-or-won’t-you-binge hand-wringing, a decision that ‘Downton’ fans now also face.”

Jamshid Ghazi Askar is a graduate of BYU's J. Reuben Clark Law School and member of the Utah State Bar. Contact him at jaskar@desnews.com or 801-236-6051.

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