Issue while changing Netflix account reactivation date.

(Because I’d rather rant on my blog than call Customer Service, that’s why.)

Expected behavior:

The ability to select any date from October 30 to January 28 (i.e., the earliest to latest allowed dates) via the month and day drop-downs when changing account reactivation date.

Actual behavior:

Was unable to select January 28, 2011 (the latest possible date offered me and my preference) or indeed any date in January. In the end, I was forced to select December 31 as my renewal date, the latest date actually available to me via the UI.

Steps to reproduce:
  1. Sign in to Netflix.
  2. From Your Account, select “Change Reactivation Date.”
  3. Select January from the first drop-down menu. (Page reloads, with the option reset to the current month, October.)
  4. Select November from the first drop-down menu. (Works as expected.)
  5. Select December from the first drop-down menu. (Works as expected.)
  6. Select January from the first drop-down menu. (Page reloads, with the option reset to the current month, October.)
Comments:
  • Reproduced on multiple browsers (latest Firefox/WinXP, IE8/WinXP, Opera Mini/PalmOS).
  • At a guess: the code can’t distinguish between “last January” (an invalid selection) and “next January” (a valid one).
  • Expecting customers to call Customer Service to report website UI issues is really not helpful.
  • Although I note that not even Netflix API developers have access to a public bug tracker, so at least it’s not some sort of luser/developer double-standard.
  • Using HTML definition lists this way probably isn’t really in the spirit of modern specs, and I really should change it to DIVs and headings, but….
  • I have now taken more time on this than I (probably) would have wasted calling Customer Service.