Netflix Reportedly Plans to Hike Prices for No-Ads Plans After Actors Strike Is Settled ↗

    Netflix is gearing up to raise the prices of streaming plans without advertising “a few months” after the SAG-AFTRA actors strike is resolved, according to a new report.

    The streaming service is “discussing” raising prices in “several markets globally,” and likely will first increase fees in the U.S. and Canada, according to a Wall Street Journal report, citing anonymous sources. The Journal did not have info on what Netflix’s new prices will be or when they might go into effect.

    THE PRICE HIKES WILL CONTINUE UNTIL PROFITS IMPROVE!

    While this news isn’t definite, it also wouldn’t surprise me one bit if it happened. I’m sure somebody in an executive suite questioned why in the world they should have to suffer the consequences of temporarily lost revenue when they could just pass it on down to their consumers. After all, it was the media companies that were the true victims of the recent strikes, right?

    Right? 🙄

    Every day it seems that enshittification should become an enshrined law of the universe.

    Backblaze, a company of which I’m quite fond, just sent out an email notice of a price increase to their computer backup service.1 Starting October 3, the new pricing for the Backblaze Computer Backup service is:

    • $9 a month, or
    • $99 a year, or
    • $189 for two years

    I’ve been a Backblaze user since they were charging $5 a month or $60 a year to back up a computer. In the years since, I’ve seen that number slowly tick up. $5 became $6 became $7. The price has now nearly doubled since I first subscribed.

    In addition to the price increase, they’re also making their one-year extended version history feature available to all users for “free.” Previously, it was an additional $2 a month add-on. I’ve never used more than their 30-day version history, so this ridiculously long extra safety buffer is nice, but in my case, unnecessary. It feels like a way to boost revenue without actually spending anything.

    This email, taken in its entirety, can also be read a different way: Backblaze subscribers will be receiving a feature that they may not need, and cannot refuse in exchange for a lower subscription price, while incurring a 29% price increase for monthly subscribers or a 41% increase for annual subscribers.

    It’s an understandable bummer for the consumer. On one hand, data storage isn’t free,2 and they have other operating costs to consider. I’ll never begrudge anyone that reality. On the other hand, Backblaze launched its initial public offering (IPO) in November 2021. This means that people can buy and sell shares of the company, but also that there is now massive and relentless motivation for Backblaze to increase its value. It’ll allow the company to grow, but will also necessitate price increases like this one if it’s not growing enough or in the right way (according to the inscrutable stock market gods). Capitalism, baby!

    It should go without saying, but I consider Backblaze an essential service; there’s nothing quite like it. I’ll still recommend it to everyone I know. There are few things in this world I value more than knowing my important data is reliably backed up and able to be restored. I’ll accept this most recent price increase with a well-earned grimace for that reason.


    1. Thankfully, I just re-upped for another year a few days ago, so this won’t be a big issue for me for several months. ↩︎

    2. Although it is getting cheaper all the time—another reason why this increase is irksome. ↩︎

    My parents bought their home for a little over $100,000. Granted, this was in the early ‘80s.

    A home on the same street just sold for slightly over one million dollars. A ten-fold increase in just a few decades.

    At this rate, unless I strike it rich, home ownership will never be a reality for me.

    I’ve decided that the best thing for me to do with my life is to win the lottery. Preferably some kind of major, or even historic, jackpot. Any ideas on how best to accomplish this?

    My taxes for this year have been done. As always, it was an unnecessarily tiring ordeal, but I’m relieved to have gotten it done in such a timely manner.

    What the heck am I subscribed to now?

    A new year is a time for reflection, anticipation, and starting a brand new financial spreadsheet. I’ve got a fresh and relatively rudimentary worksheet going in Numbers. It may not have all the bells and whistles that some financial documents might have, but it gets the job done.

    What it does have is a list of all my monthly and annual subscriptions. Recently, I took a look at them to see what I’m paying for, and also what I can stand to stop paying for. Writing all this down can be helpful when it comes to making those decisions, so I’m going to hop on the bandwagon and use Maique’s recent post about the same topic as inspiration.1

    Categories of need:

    • Essential: it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
    • Nice to have: the world won’t end if I get rid of it, but I’d miss it a whole lot.
    • Needs to go: working on the courage I need to get it out of my life.

    Subscriptions I’m keeping

    • Apple One: I use just about everything in this bundle and it’s shared with my family. It’s probably the most important item here. Essential. $29.95 a month.
    • Backblaze: If you’re not backing up often and automatically, you’re using a computer wrong. Essential. $70 a year.
    • Carrot Weather: I could probably use Apple’s free weather app, but this one can be customized to my exact desires and it’s a lot of fun. Nice to have. $14.99 a year.
    • Castro: I listen to podcasts probably more than anything else. I love them and I love how Castro works. Essential. $8.99 a year.
    • Drafts: I don’t know that I would call Drafts itself essential, but I think an extensible text editor is. I’m growing to love this, but I’ve always got my eye out for other options. Essential-ish. $19.99 a year.
    • Fantastical: There’s a free Apple alternative, but I’ve never enjoyed using it. The natural language support alone makes Fantastical a necessity. Essential. $39.99 a year.
    • HBO Max: It’s just entertainment, but I think that’s an important thing to have, especially when we’re all stuck indoors. It’s still too expensive. Nice to have. $14.99 a month.
    • Hover: Domain hosting and email for Dandy Cat. The email bit could go. Essential. $50.17 a year.
    • Hulu: Same as HBO Max. There’s so much on here that I enjoy. Nice to have. $12.99 a month.
    • Letterboxd: Letterboxd was the best thing I discovered last year. I don’t have too much interest in the social side of the service, but I love everything else about it so much that I became a patron. Nice to have. $49 a year.
    • Micro.blog: This is where Dandy Cat lives. It’s where I’ve met some lovely people. It’s cared for by people who truly care. I love it. Essential. $5 a month.
    • 1Password: I wish I could start using Apple’s improved password manager, but my wife also depends on this. Still, a password manager is a must for any computer user. Essential. $59 a year.
    • Parcel: I don’t have to have a package tracker, but when I order things online it’s nice to know where my stuff is in the world. Nice to have. $2.99 a year.
    • Patreon - Do By Friday: This show has always brought me joy. Good enough to support, but could go away. Nice to have. $5 a month.
    • Relay FM - four supported shows: Like the Do By Friday membership, the shows on Relay FM make me happy. I want them to continue existing. Nice to have. $20 a month (four shows for $5 apiece).
    • Sleep Cycle: I’ve started using my Apple Watch for sleep tracking, so this one is sure to go soon. Somehow I was grandfathered into only paying two bucks a year for their premium service, so that price is hard to give up. Needs to go. $1.99 a year.
    • Widgetsmith: Totally inessential, but it makes my phone look nice, so I like it. If needed, this can easily go away. Nice to have. $1.99 a month.

    Amount spent on monthly subscriptions: $89.92.

    Amount spent on annual subscriptions: $337.10.

    Annual total for all subscriptions: $1,416.14.

    Subscriptions I’m letting lapse

    • Google One: This was being used only as a backup solution, but there are other ways to do this that don’t involve Google. Was $19.99 a year.
    • Mindnode: This is a stellar app, but I don’t use mind maps nearly enough to make this worth the expense. Was $19.99 a year.
    • Paste: After finding Pastebot, this one became superfluous. Was $9.99 a year.
    • Ulysses: I love Ulysses, but my needs for a text editor started to outpace what it was providing this year. I also wasn’t too pleased with some of their recent design decisions and slow feature updates. Was $29.99 a year.

    1. Hi, @maique! 👋 ↩︎