By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man – @tvanswerman

TV Answer Man, I am a longtime Netflix DVD renter. I get Blu-ray movies and they are great. But I am sorry to hear that Netflix is stopping service. Do you have the details like when and so forth? — Phil, Milwaukee.

Phil, Netflix has announced that it will discontinue its DVD/Blu-ray mail rental business after 25 years. The little red envelope put Netflix on the map, but subscribers have fallen to under two million, not enough to keep the side biz afloat. Afterall, Netflix has this other little business now called streaming. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? Has more than 200 million subs worldwide.

Here are some basic answers for anyone who still subscribes to Netflix’s DVD rental service:

Why is Netflix closing the DVD business?
This is the company’s statement:
“After an incredible 25 year run, we’ve made the difficult decision to wind down at the end of September. Our goal has always been to provide the best service for our members, but as the DVD business continues to shrink, that’s going to become increasingly difficult. Making 2023 our Final Season allows us to maintain our quality of service through the last day and go out on a high note.”

When will Netflix ship its last disc?
The company says it will ship its last disc order on September 29th, 2023.

When is the last day you can return a Netflix disc?
Netflix says it will continue to accept disc returns until October 27th, 2023.

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Does that mean you can keep your discs if you don’t return them by October 27?
No. You will be charged for a missing disc just as you would when the service was operating. Update: Netflix now says you will not be charged for any missing discs. They are yours to keep.

When will billing for the DVD service end?
Your last bill will be in August. After your August payment, you will continue to receive service until the final shipping day, September 29th.

Will the end of the DVD service affect your streaming subscription?
Your current streaming subscription will not be impacted. Your DVD subscription will automatically be canceled on the last shipping day.

Do you need to take any action to cancel your DVD subscription?
You do not need to take any action. After the final shipping date, your DVD subscription will be automatically canceled.

What will happen to your personal rental records?
Netflix promises that most personal information will be deleted when the DVD rental service ends or shortly there after. This includes your:

•Mailing address(es)
•Rental/shipping history
•Taste preferences / genre ratings

Data which will be preserved after that time include:

Name and login information; DVD billing history (including tax data); and charges for unreturned discs (including tax data).

Phil, hope that helps. Happy viewing and stay safe!

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— Phillip Swann