Hell Hath No Fury Like A Netflix Subscriber Scorned

Queue-tastrophe? Queue-pocalypse? Whatever you want to call the fallout from Netflix’s decision to drop the DVD queue from streaming devices, irate subscribers have been hammering away at the company online this week with staggering ferocity.

Netflix’s own blog post announcing the decision has been flooded with nearly 4,500 comments–at least double the total of the most-commented post on the site going back about three years.

Compounding the backlash is growing confusion over just what Netflix (NSDQ: NFLX) did. A perusal of the commenters on Netflix’s Facebook page, which saw a strong but not necessarily record-setting reaction, clearly indicates that many subscribers believed Netflix had yanked DVDs entirely from its service. While many have speculated that limiting the reach of the DVD queue is heading down a road where Netflix will rely only on streaming to deliver movies, that isn’t the case.

A post on Yahoo’s “Movie Talk” blog that drew well over 9,000 commenters probably had something to do with the confusion considering its somewhat misleading headline: “Netflix Is Abandoning DVDs, Customers Who Prefer DVDs.”

To quantify the negativity, we checked in with research firm Trendrr, which used research tool Collecta (just hours before that company announced it was shutting the product down) to do a sentiment analysis of comments on blog posts. There was a distinct turn in Netflix sentiment once the news filtered through the interwebs. On Monday and Tuesday, Netflix was 68 percent positive buzz, with 16 percent negative and 16 percent neutral. Compare those numbers with Wednesday, when sentiment turned to 53 percent negative, 37percent positive and 11 percent neutral.

Now 53 percent doesn’t exactly mean Netflix has a revolution on its hands. Trendrr data indicates it is the biggest dip since Netflix experienced outtages in October, but that’s when sentiment truly went hostile, clocking in at 72 percent negative.

A Netflix spokesman on Wednesday said the company had no plans to reconsider its decision.