Starz to delay new series on Netflix

The cable channel says new series will no longer be available to stream the day after episodes air, and will institute a 90-day delay. Starz movies will eventually have the same waiting period.

Starz follows Showtime in putting limits on original series' availability via Netflix streaming.
Starz follows Showtime in putting limits on original series' availability via Netflix streaming. Matthew Moskovciak/CNET

Cable channel Starz says it will no longer allow its original series to stream on Netflix the day after airing. Instead, the channel is requiring a 90-day waiting period for all episodes.

Starz says the new policy will go into effect on April 1, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times. Eventually this policy will also apply to movies Starz supplies to Netflix, though an exact date for that wasn't given.

Netflix seemed to take it in stride.

"It's just their new series, and 90 days is fine. We still have existing series the day after," said spokesman Steve Swasey. "Movies are not impacted contractually. We've said publicly, the deal with Starz runs through mid Q1 2012."

The move by Starz comes just days after Showtime said some of its own original programming will no longer be available via streaming to Netflix customers when their contract expires this summer. (Showtime is owned by CBS, publisher of CNET.)

It's perhaps more evidence that Hollywood executives have begun to view Netflix as a threat . The video rental service, however, is not backing down. Last week it announced it had acquired its first original series , called "House of Cards," that will be available via its streaming service.

Update, 5:42 p.m. PT:with comment from Netflix.

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