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As Netflix Cancels Shows Faster, Fan Favorites Quickly Disappear

After Netflix cancelled the Naomi Watts drama “Gypsy” in 2017, a group of fans calling themselves “Easy Tigers” organized a social media campaign to get people to start watching the show in hopes of changing Netflix executives’ minds. The campaign was so organized that it directed people to watch specific episodes twice, consecutively, at set times. It even organized billboards in West Hollywood. Despite the campaign, Netflix did not bring the show back.

For a service once known for picking up shows dropped by other networks, such as “Longmire” and “Arrested Development,” Netflix is now getting a reputation for killing off popular series. That was demonstrated most obviously last week, when the service cancelled the family sitcom “One Day at a Time,” six weeks after its third season began airing—despite a social media campaign orchestrated by the show’s creators imploring people to watch. (One fan, talk show host Busy Philipps, even rented a plane to fly a trailer over Hollywood calling on Netflix to “Renew One Day at a Time.”) It was similarly unresponsive when fans of “Sense8” campaigned for that show to come back after the end of its second season in 2017.

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“Without having seen the data, I would assume Netflix is looking at its word of mouth, the long tail of the show, whether a lot of people watch it or it just disappears.”