WATCH: Netflix explains why it doesn't have that movie you wanted to see

It's more like a TV channel than a boundless archive

Jason Gilbert
Yahoo News

by Jason Gilbert | @YahooTech

Netflix has released a second video in its new "Netflix Quick Guide" explainer series, and this one answers a question that many of us ask ourselves when coming up empty in our quest to find a movie or TV show on the site: Just how does Netflix choose what to stream?

You can see Netflix's answer in the video below. I would re-emphasize that Netflix has been pushing the idea that it is a channel, and not a limitless archive of every moving image since the days of the Lumiere brothers, for some time now. Ever since Netflix made the switch from DVD-first to streaming-first, it has shifted away from the notion that it could act as your Blockbuster video store, where the history of cinema was at your fingertips.

Buying up every DVD you could want to rent is much, much cheaper than buying the rights to stream every movie and television show ever, as it happened.

This is a difficult concept for a lot of Netflix subscribers who are accustomed to the DVD model to wrap their heads around. And so, as reiterated below, Netflix views itself as a neo-programmer -- that is to say, it is curating a set of movies and television shows that are both affordable (for Netflix) and pleasing (to you). Its success is based on how well it's able to choose programming that its viewers like while still being profitable.

But don't take my word for it: Let Netflix explain its programming strategy to you. You can watch the first video in the series, in which Netflix explained Internet streaming, right here.

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