Starz ending Netflix streaming on February 18th!

Netflix and Starz are parting ways! Comingsoon reports that Starz will not be renewing their contract to stream Starz content on Netflix. Here is a statement from Starz President and Chief Executive Officer, Chris Albrecht:

"Starz Entertainment has ended contract renewal negotiations with Netflix. When the agreement expires on February 28, 2012, Starz will cease to distribute its content on the Netflix streaming platform. This decision is a result of our strategy to protect the premium nature of our brand by preserving the appropriate pricing and packaging of our exclusive and highly valuable content. With our current studio rights and growing original programming presence, the network is in an excellent position to evaluate new opportunities and expand its overall business."

This news comes on the same day that Netflix's combined DVD and streaming price plans go into effect. This is s a double whammy for Netflix. The deal with Starz has allowed a ton of films to be shown on Netflix instant, albeit many of them were not always the best movies. Netflix has been able to work with a number of studios and other sources to maintain newer films in their streaming content, but this hurts the service a bit. 

I have been using a streaming only plan for about a year, and this news does not really change my plans on keeping Netflix, but it does leave me wondering if the number of new/newer releases will diminsh. What are your thoughts on this news?

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