Posted Tue May 14, 2013 at 09:30 AM PDT by Brian Hoss
The Netlfix public API will no longer have title expiration dates.
With sites all over the internet publicizing numbers involving Netflix's recent content expiration, Netflix has made a change to its public API. Previously, using Netflix's public API gave the user access to functionality beyond what official Netflix apps provide, including sorting out expiring titles. This led to sites like instantwatcher.com to maintain a list of Netflix titles that are designated to expire.
As Netflix licenses content from major studios, titles are frequently added and removed as those deals are renewed, modified, or allowed to expire. Sometimes the content comes back, and often times, titles set to expire end up staying. With instantwatcher.com supplying an alarming 1,800 titles set to expire, sites all over the internet made the number go viral. A few examples include: Engadget used the term "Streampocalypse." Slate referred to the expiring titles as "The Great Netflix Purge." And the Huffing Post just round up the expiring number to 2,000 titles.
The high number of expiring titles would seem to coincide with the expansions of Warner Instant and Epix, but Netlfix has remained mum on the specifics.
In what seems like a direct result to the negative publicity, Netflix made a change, "Starting today, we will no longer provide expiration dates for any of our titles in the public API... We are making this change because the expiration date can be inaccurate as a result of frequent, often last minute, changes in content flow.
"Netflix members will still be able to see the listed title expirations on Netflix.com on each individual title page."
In essence, the next time some sort of Netflix expiring content panic is spurred on, Netflix's public API won't be there to supply the number of titles, and a manual search of Netflix will be necessary.
Author: Brian Hoss
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