The Sunday Magazine: Hey Streamers! Can You Wait 12 Hours?

As I wrote about last week the streaming services have been releasing compelling series which are full of surprises. Unfortunately, the Internet is full of idiots hellbent on spoiling those surprises. I’ve written about the sad people who must post a key plot twist within hours of the show being released. They’re jerks but it is easy enough to avoid them by staying away from the places they thrive. Except lately there has been a new front in the rush to put out that spoiler information, the big entertainment websites.

Like many I have my favorite websites for entertainment news. Whenever I find one I like, I agree to have announcements from them as part of my news feed on my phone and iPad. I like getting the alert of a new article to see if I might be interested in reading it. I’ve never had a problem with them being the source of spoilers before. Something has changed in the last few months. Now these sites are writing stories about the same thing the trolls did within hours of them being released. The problem is I wake up to them in my news feed.

The first example came with a December episode of Star Trek: Discovery which was the second part of a two-part episode. In the first part there was a character which elicited a lot of speculation on who or what it was. I spent the week going back and forth trying to figure it out. That’s part of the fun. Except at 7:30 AM on the morning that the second part was released I picked up my phone to see the answer spoiled in a headline from an entertainment site. I made sure to go on to their comments section and explain to them that this was ridiculous. I also explained that I was removing them from my news feed and thus they lost one pair of eyeballs seeing their ads because I no longer would be regularly visiting.

The very next morning I smartened up and did not pick up my phone before watching the season finale of The Mandalorian and the huge surprise within that episode. After enjoying it I did pick up my phone only to see a different entertainment website with a headline spoiling that surprise. Again less than six hours after it was released a large advertiser driven entertainment site saw the need to start trumpeting it. I again expressed my displeasure and removed the site from my feed.

Only to have it happen again this past Friday with the most recent episode of WandaVision. There is a great surprise right at the end of this episode. Again I made sure not to look at my phone before watching. Just as before when I turned it over there was a different entertainment website happy to blow the surprise. At this rate I won’t have any left in my feed.

I have been thinking about a way to solve the desire of these sites to be jerks. I think the solution comes down to the streaming services. Almost all new content is released at 12 midnight Pacific Coast Time 3AM East Coast. It gives a window for these sites to get out in front before most of the US is awake. The solution is for them to move the release time from midnight Pacific to noon pacific. Now everyone is awake and can get ahead of the pinheads who feel the need to take away others’ fun and enjoyment.

So hey Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, Amazon Prime, CBS AllAccess/Paramount+, and Peacock could you please move the release time just twelve hours. That way the inconsiderate jerks can’t continue to ruin the fun for the rest of us.

Mark Behnke

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