Written by Natalie Mootz | Last Updated February 24th, 2020Natalie has been writing for the web since dinosaurs roamed the earth. Or at least since dinosaurs achieved blogging technology. She's also written for About.com and Joystiq.
Netflix may or may not be happy about this, but it's in danger of becoming a household name -- just not in the way it wants to be.
Think of Kleenex or Xerox. Did you conjure up a brand? Or, instead did you imagine a generic item such as a tissue or a copy machine? It's likely that you thought of the item instead of the brand. There is no agreed-upon term for the generalization of a brand into a catch-all for everything of its kind. Some call them proprietary eponyms, others call them generic trademarks. Whatever name they go by, it's a sure bet that the brands in question don't like it one bit.
And now Netflix is well on its way to achieving the dubious distinction of generic status. These days there's a "Netflix" for everything. The accepted definition of (if you'll pardon my French) a Netflix-ized service is one that offers a flat monthly fee for an all-you-can-eat product or service. We've just shortened the mental route to describing it by calling it "the Netflix of," well, just about anything.
Take the examples below. In each case either they themselves or the press referred to them as:
The Netflix of...
- Comic books: Scribd ($9.99/month)
- Vinyl records: VNYL ($9.99/month)
- Magazines: Next Issue (from $9.99/month)
- Video games: PlayStation Now ($15 - $20/month)
- E-learning: Mindsy ($29/month)
- Concerts: Jukely Unlimited (from $29/month)
- Fashion: Rent the Runway ($49/month to rent clothing)
- Private flights: Beacon ($2,000/month)
In each case, though, you'll likely note that all of these services actually cost more than Netflix itself. Copycats! Get your own proprietary eponym!
In the market for the Netflix of Netflix? Check out our reviews of Netflix and many other streaming television services here.