throttle.gif Ah yes, it has finally happened. Except the way it’s happening is kind of… weird.

I’d heard of the infamous Netflix throttle– it made the news. If you go through a lot of movies in a month, you’ll have far more new releases marked “Very Long Wait” than you did when you were a new user. If you turn your movies in too quickly, the turnaround time starts slowing down.

Over the winter break, I decided to embark on a a Star Trek: Voyager marathon. With seven complete seasons to the show, that’s a lot of hours of tv to watch. I was dismayed to find that my favorite local video store did not have Voyager. Neither does the iTunes music store. And the discs are wildly over-priced (which might explain why the video store doesn’t carry it).

So I turned to Netflix. I loaded my queue with all of the Voyager discs, in order, at the top of the line. I even increased my subscription so I could work through them faster.

This worked great for about a month. Now the turnaround time has slowed down– not a surprise, I guess. But what’s weirding me out is that they keep sending me movies in my queue that are _not_ Voyager. As far as I can tell, they’re going to the movies that are placed right after Voyager, and sending those in order. I’ve got four of these non-Voyager discs in my posession right now, and I’m betting I’ll have a fifth before long.

Obviously, increasing my subscription to five at a time has backfired completely; it just put me on the throttle list that much faster. So i’ll be bumping my subscription back down.

You know, if they want to limit the number of movies I get a month, yes, I wish they’d be more honest about it. I get that they need to make money to stay in business. Why not let me throw scads of money at them for a month or two if I want to rent 24 disc in 30 days? It would still be cheaper than my one other option, buying Voyager.

But it’s absolutely infuriating that they’re sending me movies, just not the ones I’ve said I want. It’s so… lame. What the hell are they accomplishing by doing this? I guess it’s some weird almost passive-agressive way of _sending me a message._ C’mon guys.

So, I dunno what I’m going to do. I might remove everything but Voyager from my queue. I can save a record of it and reproduce it if I want to later. If I had a second mailing address, I could open a completely separate Netflix account and they’d be none the wiser. I could experiment with dividing my queue into two different queues.

Or check with other video stores..

Or decide to stop watching so much tv…