Federal appeals court sides with GameFly in dispute with U.S. Post Office.
GameFly claims it spends millions of dollars every year adjusting to the U.S. Postal Service's (USPS) handling of its games, unlike Netflix, which allegedly receives the white glove treatment. As the USPS's biggest customer, Netflix's DVDs are processed by hand and with specially designated containers, which could serve a dual-purpose of limiting damage to and loss of DVDs. This was the basis for GameFly taking matters to court.
"Rather obviously, this is not without cost to the postal service. Nonetheless, the service provides it to Netflix free of charge," U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit Judge David Sentelle stated, according to Reuters.
The decision was unanimous, with all agreeing that the USPS should handle GameFly discs in the same manner as Netflix DVDs, though no specific changes were ordered.
"The [Postal Regulatory] Commission must either remedy all discrimination or explain why any residual discrimination is due or reasonable," the judge wrote.
GameFly is an online game rental service that operates similar to Netflix. Not including trial offers and promotional pricing, gamers can sign up to have 1 game out at a time for $15.95/month, 2 games for $22.95/month, or 3 games for $29.95/month. All three plans also include "Unlimited PC Play," giving subscribers access to 100s of PC games for free.