Netflix looks to buy exclusive online rights to Paramount, Lionsgate and MGM catalogs

Netflix streaming.According to the LA Times, Netflix is looking to add more titles to its streaming options by adding exclusive access to Paramount, Lionsgate, and MGM film catalogs. The deal, which would manifest as a partnership with EPIX, would cost Netflix something like a billion dollars for five years of exclusivity.

Any time Netflix says it will expand its streaming catalog, I’m a happy man. I do most of my movie viewing via streaming on my desktop, often while I’m doing work throughout the day. More options is always a good thing. Unfortunately, this deal would still suffer, as the current streaming system does, from Hollywood mandated “windowing,” pushing streamable titles beyond the rent date. Hopefully studios will start to get more flexible as streaming becomes more and more popular.


This American Life gets a dedicated app

Ira Glass.A few weeks ago I was in a crisis. I had an 11-hour drive in front of me and for some reason I missed a week of my This American Life podcast. It took a good bit of scouring, but I finally found a place to download it (no, it wasn’t available on iTunes any longer). Well no more!

My favorite radio show (and many others’ as the podcast rankings prove) finally has its own iPhone app, replete with on demand access to any episode of the show. You can stream for free or download any episode for the usual $.99. The app itself will run you $2.99.

If you haven’t listened to TAL, you need to. It’s just that simple. There are some truly incredible stories on the show, and often some very informative ones as well. They did a show about the sub-prime mortgage crisis that simply blew my mind. For my money, there’s not really a better way to spend a long drive.