Have a cord-cutting question? We have answers


As someone who writes a weekly column and newsletter about cord-cutting, I tend to get a lot of questions from readers.

Most of the time, I respond to them in private, but this week I wanted to do something a bit different. I asked readers to ask me anything about cord-cutting, no matter how basic, and made plans to answer my favorites here in this column. (Longtime readers might recall a similar exercise from a couple of years ago.)

In response, I received dozens of questions, many of which could be of interest to other folks as well. Here are my best attempts to answer them:

How can I find where shows and movies are streaming?

Tony asks: What is the most reliable way to find out who is streaming a show or movie you want to see? I want to go to one place, type in the name of the movie or show, and get my answer.

I recommend either Reelgood or JustWatch for this. Both sites offer a search function that looks up movies and shows across dozens of streaming services. They also have apps that you can use on iOS, Android, Fire TV, Android TV, and Apple TV devices. Reelgood’s mobile app even has a neat way to launch videos on Roku players.

justwatchsearch Jared Newman / IDG

JustWatch (pictured) and Reelgood provide handy search engines for streaming services.

Most streaming TV devices offer universal search functions where you can look up movies or shows by name, typically by using your voice. That’s worth trying first if you’re already in front of the TV.

How often do streaming shows expire?

Robert asks: Sprint gave me free Hulu with my plan, and I added several Nickelodeon TV series to my watch list last year. I see that several series will expire this week. Is it normal for series to expire and if so, how often does this happen?

Departures are indeed a regular occurrence in the streaming world. Hulu and other services license a lot of content from TV networks (such as ViacomCBS, which owns Nickelodeon), and when those arrangements expire, the networks might take their shows elsewhere. We’re also seeing networks move their hit shows onto their own streaming services, as we’ve seen recently with The Office moving from Netflix to Peacock or Friends moving from Netflix to HBO Max.





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