back to article Disney aims for Netflix. If the deal was made, it would shoot itself in the foot

People that invest in Netflix and people that invest in Disney should never meet each other – they would not get on. But it seems there is a danger, according to the Wall Street Journal, that the two shall be thrown together in an unholy Alliance. While we can totally see the logic of such a deal, and how theoretically it …

  1. Kaltern

    I still remember when Disney meant mice, princesses and evil villains. I suppose that's kind of still true today... but with more expensive suits. Of varying kinds.

    1. Danny 14

      And lawyers. Many, many lawyers.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I think The Mouse has always had many, many lawyers.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Jedit Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Punisher Kills The Disney Universe

    One point not mentioned is that a Disney takeover of Netflix would put the Marvel Defenders shows under the same roof as the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Only Agents of SHIELD would be on a channel they don't own, I think?

    1. liamdaly

      Re: Punisher Kills The Disney Universe

      This probably wont surprise you but Disney own ABC which shows Agents of SHIELD.

  4. SuccessCase

    This article assumes Disney are interested so they can control and to some extent merge operations. That's a big assumption. Their interest could well be purely a way to hedge in relation to the future of TV. E.g. a pure risk mitigation play. Famously the Netflix's business model is somewhat incompatible with legacy content producer models. If Disney own Netflix they can bridge across to the future without the valuable Disney brand getting steamrollered by disruptive forces and can at a future date use that brand with the new business model. The point is, if they don't make the acquisition now, there will be in the future an inflection point where Netflix or Amazon or a.n. Other streaming service is the content king and they will no longer have the financial muscle to control their destiny.

  5. Lost In Clouds of Data
    Thumb Down

    Aw, c'mon. let's look at the facts

    1) ABC is owned by the Disney Media Network.

    2) ABC Studios is a wholly owned entity of Disney–ABC Media networks and was formally known as Touchstone until 2007.

    3) ABC Studio co-produces a shit tonne of shows, including "Luke Cage", which is made along with Marvel Studios.

    4) Marvel Studios is a wholly owned entity of Walt Disney Studios.

    5) Luke Cage is an original Netflix production.

    6) Luke cage is rated TV-MA in the US, and 15 in the UK.

    Now, how does that even begin to suggest : "A Disney owned Netflix would almost certainly be told what to do, what content it could create, and be charged with making sure that content could go on a Disney channel without anyone raising an eyebrow."

    I love reading el Reg, but you guys really dropped the ball on this one. I understand this was written by Faultline, but it had no place in el Reg. Your readers expect better of you.

    1. Danny 14

      Re: Aw, c'mon. let's look at the facts

      Netflix buys content. Content providers sell content. Disney wants to do both and will buy less from other people thus showing less overall.

    2. scott.ramsdell

      Re: Aw, c'mon. let's look at the facts

      Not only the above, but Disney also owns Touchstone which creates content that wouldn't be allowed on Disney channels.

  6. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

    Logic? No need.

    It's all about doing The Deal. The bigger the better.

    The consequent destruction of value is somebody elses problem.

    And with Netflix being a really big deal, the slippery slope from "Netflix by Disney" to "Disney Netflix Channel" to boring irrelevance would take, what 5 years?

  7. NonSSL-Login


    If you ask consumers I suspect many of them would be horrified at any of the MPAA companies taking control of Netlix.

    They see Netflix as hurting their profits, in the same way RIAA see Spotify as it's enemy. Makes them a ton of money but they are always thinking they can make more if they can kill a service and offer it directly.

    With that control comes more control, more geo-restrictions, more DRM and more bollocks everywhere.

    Disney taking control of Netflix would be a nightmare come true.

    1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

      Re: Nightmare

      That would ne the same Spotify hating RIAA that sent this to the US governemtn?

      We learned today from media reports that the music service Spotify has been blocked from access by users of the U.S. House of Representatives’ network. We certainly can appreciate and understand why the policy was implemented that prevents access to unauthorized peer-to-peer services for security reasons as well as to prevent use of the House network for illegal activity.

      Spotify is a licensed, secure online music streaming service. In fact, it is one of the dozens of authorized digital services that the music community is partnering with to offer a catalogue of millions of songs to fans, however they want it, whenever they want it – including members of Congress and their aides. Additional details about Spotify and these other services can be found at, a comprehensive one-stop shopping guide of authorized music services that we developed with music business association NARM and our online retailer partners. These services are safe and secure, and assuring access to them not only respects the contractual relationship users may have with these services, but also achieves an important public policy goal of promoting legal, safe digital providers.


  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If Disney buys Netflix....

    Then I leave Netflix. Simple as that.

    I don't need any weak social justice warriors pushing their gay agendas on alternate media I pay for.

    I get enough of that online as it is.

    1. Lost In Clouds of Data

      Re: If Disney buys Netflix....

      Oh dear god, Another wanker who thinks that seeing two men kissing, or two women making love in a TV show or movie as pushing 'the gay agenda'.

      What IS IT with you arseholes? It's called representing real life and no more pushes a gay agenda than a man and a woman kissing pushes a heterosexual agenda...

      No wonder you posted that as an anonymous coward.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If Disney buys Netflix....

      AC "gay agendas...I get enough of that online as it is."

      What YouPr0n categories you surf is up to you. As long as you're getting enough.

    3. Hollerithevo

      Re: If Disney buys Netflix....

      The phrase that springs to mind when I see the words 'Disney' ad Netflix' is 'social justice warriors'. Yep. Absolutely sums them up.

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        Re: If Disney buys Netflix....

        Dear Mr. Anon,

        As someone comfortable with my own sexuality, I've not noticed any of the events that seem to freak you out.

        HAVE there been gay people (shock horror) kissing or holding hands etc. on any TV I've watched?

        Probably. It just doesn't hit the radar. I'm not threatened by it. As I told a gay friend when he came out: "Cool! That means I don't have to worry about you being competition when we are out on the pull!" (it was MANY years ago)

        It's a long established fact that those most vocal in homophobia are unsure themselves, and feel bad about it, presumably due to family/worker/peer pressure etc.

        So, we sense your internal conflict, but you should celebrate who you are, despite what your family/co-workers/friends say.

  9. JeffyPoooh

    Streaming IT vice Content is King...

    Streaming as a business: Arrange content (the only non-trivial step). Hire some servers (e.g. Amazon) and a CDN (e.g. Akamai). Copy and paste some code. A new streaming business (at scale) could be live within a month. They've certainly been proliferating at a furious rate.

    'Content is king' applies. Much of Disney's archive is getting stale. Netflix has a growing library of original and popular series. Netflix already knows that 'Content is king', and they know that streaming technology is not a valuable USP. Netflix is a content creation company now. Streaming is just infrastructure. They could outsource the IT 100%.

  10. John G Imrie


    and be charged with making sure that content could go on a Disney channel without anyone raising an eyebrow.

    Two words

    Dead Pool

    I think Disney is under new management

    1. fandom

      Re: Really?

      Deadpool is a Fox movie.

      But then Pulp Fiction is a Disney movie, produced by their Miramax label.

      1. John G Imrie

        Re: Really?

        Dam you are right. Why the hell did I think it was Disney.

  11. scrubber

    Market saturation

    Netflix has reached the point where it plays by the usual.rules, no more double digit growth as is. They need exclusive, live content to keep growing, but sports are really expensive. They will eventually do it (games on phone, tablet, PC and TV is the ideal for consumers) but the pricing model is not easy to do for a company that says £X gets you everything we have. They have to start demarcating their customers (other than by legally enforced geography) and that won't sit well initially. But Netflix seem to be progressing to the point of being bigger than Disney, star wars be damned, pretty soon.

    1. JeffyPoooh

      Re: Market saturation

      " content to keep growing..."

      A live Netflix News Channel would assist their customers in cutting the cable. One needs news coverage. Of course, this might invoke new 'broadcasting' requirements.

      When is BBC TV going to stream to the world all their channels live, and shows On Demand, for a fee? Bring in a few billion dollars per year from foreign subscribers, and they could reduce their UK license fee. Seems such a waste to lock it up and let the content rot. BBC TV should be a vast export, bringing in a fortune.

      1. The Packrat

        Re: Market saturation

        Re: When is BBC TV going to stream to the world all their channels live...

        Same reason a lot of stuff doesn't get done: Licensing of Rights. It's fairly straightforward for them to get basic production rights for broadcast within the UK. It gets really messy trying to spread beyond. Plus, there's the ever popular operating charter. It's part of why they have BBC Worldwide...

  12. 404

    Looking at the situation with old new eyes...

    ... Snow White isn't as hot as I used to think as a child...

    That's all I got. Disney will kill it along with the hopes and dreams of chillin' everywhere...

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Disney buying Netflix?

    You must be daffy to suggest such a goofy idea!

    *Runs away in a comical cloud of cartoon smoke*

  14. Wade Burchette

    If Disney buys Netflix

    The price will sharply rise, there will be even more DRM on every streaming movie, and you will have to watch unskipable trailers for movies that are soon coming out before you can watch your movie, even if you are just resuming a movie you did not finish watching.

  15. Kaltern

    Strong, the overreaction is.

  16. John 104

    Same Netflix?

    Are we talking about the same Netflix? Their streaming content pretty much blows unless you are into watching TV shows. They have a few original titles that are decent (Supernatural comes to mind), but when it comes to new movies, you either get the DVD from their alternate arm if you're lucky, or rent it on Amazon Prime.

  17. wikkity

    if Disney tried to build its own Netflix

    Hmm, you mean something like DisneyLife?

    I can see some benefits for Disney from some synergy, Netflix has the capability stream a shed load of content.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Disney would be stupid to buy massively overpriced Netflix

    What are Netflix's prospects for managing to ever grow enough to justify their current valuation? They'd need over a billion subscribers for that to happen, or somehow cut their costs as a percentage of revenue by an unprecedented amount.

    At least an investor buying Netflix can hope that hype causes the price to become even more inflated, and sell for a profit at that point. By acquiring them, Disney needs them to actually generate enough profit to equal the NPV of the acquisition price. It would rank as one of the all time stupid acquisitions.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Disney would be stupid to buy massively overpriced Netflix

      >> It would rank as one of the all time stupid acquisitions.

      Doesn't seem to stop these huge acquisitions - see Skype, WhatsApp, Instagram, etc

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Disney would be stupid to buy massively overpriced Netflix

        True, but stupid 10 or 11 digit acquisitions seem to be mostly the province of tech companies, who often are able to buy using their own overpriced stock which cushions the blow somewhat.

  19. Florida1920

    Moe Green

    The way this should work reminds me of a scene in The Godfather, where Moe Green (Netflix) tells off the movie studios (Michael Corleone). "You don't buy me out. I buy you out!"

    The problem with Netflix isn't Netflix, it's stupid content owners who inhibit streaming according to some misguided whims. We've talked this problem to death; no need to repeat it here. In a perfect world, Netflix would be buying Disney and all its content, not the other way around. And buying other studios as well. If they won't wise up, buy them up.

  20. Richie 1

    I prefer the "Netflix stays independent, buys Spotify" argument


  21. Lord_Beavis


    If it happens, I'm canceling my account.

  22. himoverthere

    Disney should continue to expand and grow DisneyLife. Not a bad product at all, and currently gives me what I require with access to most of the Disney empire (as well as 10% discount in Disney Store) it's perfect when I have 2 young kids.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022