Remember Blockbuster Video? At its height, Blockbuster operated more than 9000 video rental stores across the world, but that very success drew new competitors into the video rental market. Brent Lang (@BrentALang) explains Blockbuster’s demise thus in this excellent essay: “In the 1990s and early aughts, the video rental chain loomed over the home entertainment market. Its rows of new releases and thousands of locations made it unrivaled, and its profit margins grew fat thanks to the exorbitant late fees it charged. But Blockbuster became complacent. Redbox and Netflix upended the business by offering cheaper, more convenient alternatives, allowing people to rent films at kiosks or have them delivered to their homes via mail or, eventually, streaming. In the process, consumers grew accustomed to paying only 99 cents a night for a movie (Redbox) or shelling out a flat monthly fee (Netflix). In a few short years, Blockbuster was a bankrupt anachronism.” So, how long will it take before Facebook becomes the next Blockbuster?
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