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Netflix's New Shows (Probably) Find More Fans

Netflix won't say how many people watch shows like "Orange Is the New Black," but a new poll says its home-grown viewing is more popular.

Peter Kafka covers media and technology, and their intersection, at Vox. Many of his stories can be found in his Kafka on Media newsletter, and he also hosts the Recode Media podcast.

Netflix doesn’t tell anyone how many people watch the shows it creates, or any other viewing data. And since that doesn’t look likely to change anytime soon, we have to rely on guesstimates from outsiders.

So here’s a new one, via a poll from Centris Marketing Science: More Netflix viewers (72 percent) say they watched the service’s original programming this fall compared to earlier this year (57 percent).

And, for what it’s worth, Centris says younger Netflix viewers are more likely to say they watched shows like “Orange Is the New Black” than older folks.

Again. It’s a self-reported poll. So maybe it means something, maybe it doesn’t. And while some data is better than none, I have more faith in data that reflects actual behavior, like the “deep packet inspection” that Procera has been able to do in the past, and the auditing Nielsen says they’re going to be able to do (though Netflix pooh-poohs Nielsen’s plans).

And then there’s other data that’s pretty straightforward, and upbeat for Netflix: At the end of the first quarter of the year, the company had 46 million paid subscribers. At the end of the third quarter, it had 50 million.

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