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Netflix outage hits some areas

It's a testament to Netflix's popularity that customers begin to panic over a midday Monday outage--or that CNET is writing a story. The company says it is working on a fix.

The Web's No. 1 video rental service is suffering an outage in some areas today, the company confirmed in a Twitter post.

"We're aware that some members are experiencing issues streaming movies and TV shows," the company wrote from its @Netflixhelps Twitter handle. "We're working to resolve the problem."

A company spokesman was not immediately available to comment. Netflix's streaming service has suffered a rash out of temporary outages this year. Streaming video to more than 23 million customers is no easy task, but the Netflix blackouts also illustrate just how important the service is to users. A glitch can send Netflix users to Twitter to joke about the harm the malfunction is causing their lives.

On a more serious note, one would think that Netflix would have its house in order during a period when potentially lots of customers are going to be evaluating whether they will continue subscribing to the streaming service as well as receiving DVDs in the mail. Starting September 1 for existing customers, Netflix will charge separately for the plans. The new pricing went into effect earlier this summer for new customers.