NetFlix RSS

by brian d foy

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NetFlix uses RSS to tell me which movies they've gotten back from me and which ones they have shipped. It's been handy. I've been curious when they get the movies back, and now I know.

I guess this could be done in email, but RSS aggregators have made this really painless. The news is automatically sorted by source, and old stuff I've already seen disappears. In this case, I only need a line of text: "Received: Blah blah" or "Shipped: yadda yadda".

I could also get an RSS feed on my complete movie queue, but that's a lot less useful. Every time the queue changes, which is every time they send me a movie, the RSS feed updates and everything moves up one position. I don't need 100 new items in my aggregator just because every movie moved up a position. I could write a filter for that feed to strip out everything but the top three, I guess.

I'd like to get most of my notifications this way: my bank can tell me about cleared checks, my credit cards could tell me a payment is due, and so on. These are all things I get in email but I can't respond to in email. It's one way: so why not give it to me as RSS?