Monday, February 27, 2006

Lawsuit a waste of time and money

Anita Ramasastry, an Associate Professor of Law at the University of Washington School of Law in Seattle , analyzes the Netflix lawsuit and concludes it was the wrong way to go about correcting the problem:
Since the cost of the suit, and the settlement, may only lead to higher prices for subscribers, one is forced to ask if the game was worth the candle. Perhaps a complaint to a state Attorney General or the Federal Trade Commission would have been preferable. Such a complaint might have resulted in a quick court injunction forcing Netflix to disclose its true practices in its Terms and Conditions - thus avoiding a huge expenditure in attorneys' fees.

One thing is for sure: The suit didn't put a stop to throttling. Netflix is still doing it - and so is Blockbuster, which now also offers a rent by mail service for DVDs. The difference is that now, both are doing it openly.