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The unintended upside of watching way too much Netflix

You may think that you spend too much time streaming movies and old TV shows that you don’t really have that much interest in via Netflix Watch Instantly (Speaking as someone who seemed to think that watching old Star Trek episodes I’ve already seen multiple times before was a perfectly legitimate pastime, I definitely do), but here’s something that’ll make you feel a little better: At least you haven’t watched more than 250 movies in one thirty day period, like Mark Malkoff.

Malkoff managed to cram in a worrying 252 movies in one month after deciding to see just how far one month’s $8 Netflix streaming subscription could take him. While this decision does, at first glance, seem like the kind of thing that would make you concerned for his mental well being, it’s actually nothing unusual for the New York comedian; he’s made a name for himself in adopting such curious challenges as visiting each of Manhattan’s Starbucks locations within 24 hours (Something that ceases to sound quite as simple when you discover that there are 171 of them), living inside an Ikea store for a week or spending 30 days flying on a plane. The difference between those projects and his Netflix experiment, however, was that the other companies had paid him to advertise their products; the month of Netflix came through love. “I am a loyal customer,” Malkoff explained. “I really like Netflix.”

In order to fit so many movies into his month, he used multiple devices to access the site; talking to GigaOm, he said that his preferred viewing option was streaming through an Apple TV, but he also took his iPhone with him to keep watching when getting some exercise (His wife would accompany him on walks around the block, he said, to ensure he didn’t walk into anything). The choice of movies for the month came from both social media and website recommendations, with some surprising favorites being discovered in Justin Bieber: Never Say Never and High School Musical – Clearly, signs of the worrying effects long-term Netflix exposure can have on the brain.

Unsurprisingly, Netflix noticed that Malkoff was such an avid viewer, and made a point of publicizing it via Twitter before inviting him to visit the company to talk about his month… and suggest a new challenge: A marathon of Netflix streamed television shows. Apparently, he’s considering it, as long as it’s for a shorter time period this time around. “A month is bad for your marriage,” Malkoff said, admitting that there are other reasons to think about less extreme challenges. “I think my Internet service provider hates me.”

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