It’s late one winter night, the house is eerily quiet. A winter storm blows outside of the window. LAUREN creeps along the edge of her living room, fumbles for the light switch. The bulb flickers, before going dark. Cautiously, she moves to the couch, reaching for the remote and turning on Netflix with a swift motion.
The blue light from the screen illuminates her face. Lauren begins to search — slowly at first, before her pace begins to quicken.
Come on, come on… where are you?
With frenzied speed she aggressively pushes the remote button, becoming more panicked.
No… no… no no no no!
She throws down the remote, and begins scrambling to find her phone.
This can’t… Okay, c’mon google.
CLOSE UP: Lauren’s eyes widen as she reads the news.
(in a whisper)
“NBC is pulling ‘The Office’ from Netflix in 2021”
As she looks up from her phone in horror, sounds of thunder crash in the background. LAUREN lets out a gasp, as the intro to American Horror Story automatically begins playing from the television.
The loss of The Office on Netflix was a true shock to the system. But why? We’ve seen every episode. We remember Pam and Jim end up together. We know the series finale is hard (that’s what she said) to watch. So why bother repeating the show when there are endless streaming options in 2021?
It’s actually very simple. Shows like The Office are the comfort food of television, and opting into a rewatch is not only guaranteed enjoyment, it also takes the struggle of decision-making off our plate after a long day at work. In 2018, the Nielsen Audience Report showed that 67% of viewers were influenced by shows they’d already seen, which leads to rewatching the same series multiple times. While this could be the result of a craving to rewatch The Dinner Party episode, it’s more likely that this decision is happening by default, not choice.
Modern-day viewers don’t have the bandwidth to make yet another choice about what television to consume. It’s simpler to replay an old favorite.
But what if the decision-making was handled for you? Nielsen also observed that 66% of video streaming came from recommendations of friends and family — people whose taste we know and opinions we trust. Jumping into a new series doesn’t feel like risking our time and attention when that show was strongly suggested by our favorite coworker. Film and television are the crux of modern-day storytelling, ultimately helping us connect with each other over characters and plotlines. But before sending yet another message to that overloaded group chat about which docuseries to start streaming, we have a simpler solution: Birdie.
The Birdie app harnesses the power of personal recommendations, in one convenient place. So you can add movies to your watch-list, find interest overlap with your Flock, and pay it forward by rating shows to help others quickly decide on what series to binge next. (Hint: It’s not Battlestar Galactica. Better luck next time Dwight.)