Let's make Disney Plus come to Central and Eastern Europe before Summer 2022.

Let's make Disney Plus come to Central and Eastern Europe before Summer 2022.

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Try Harder started this petition to The Walt Disney Company

Dear Disney,

It’s us, your fans from Central and Eastern Europe. Yeah, that region you yet again postponed in your Disney+ expansion - this time for summer 2022. We understand you had very good reasons for doing such a thing, but this does not mean we will remain silent. 

So, hear our petition about why you should bring Disney+ to our region sooner.

After all, we are not a small region. It seems small on the map, but in 20 countries stretching from the Baltic to the Mediterranean Sea, there are over 170 million people. And if you count Russia, you have another 140 million people living in a region stretching over 17 million square kilometers (almost 2 times bigger than the whole United States). 

So why are you ignoring us? 

There must be some reasons; allow us to discuss with you the most obvious ones.

1.) There are just too many countries and languages.

Yes, that’s kind of true. In these 20 countries, there are more than 25 different languages. It’s not like Latin America where you only have 2 official languages for the whole continent. But you already know that. You are in Norway and provide local support for 5 million Norwegians. Or 5 million Finnish people. Or 5 million Danish people. 

Why is it not possible to provide the same service for 40 million Poles? 20 million Romanians? 10 million Czechs, 10 million Hungarians, or even 10 million Greeks? There are so many bigger nations here, with so many Disney fans, but will we get Disney+ almost 2 years later than other European nations?

Try harder, Disney.

2.) The localization is just too complex

Yes, with this many languages, the complexity is much much greater, but you already know that. Your movies have been distributed in Central and Eastern European cinemas for decades and every time with great dubbing or at least subtitles. We got Black Widow and Cruella with Polish, Czech or Russian dubbing. It's the same situation for TV shows; there are already Disney channels with your original content and with dubbing.  So, you've already got this covered, and you own these audio versions.

And the original shows? Netflix and HBO have been in our countries for years and they produce a LOT more new and original content than you, and they manage to provide every new title with localization, even for the new shows which are released at once. What’s stopping you?

Try harder, Disney.

3. The demand there is just not that high.

Let’s agree to disagree. Here are the box office results for selected Disney titles in different countries

  • Avengers: Endgame - 6.6 M$ box office in the Czech Republic (10 M people) vs 4.3M$ box office in Portugal (10 M people).
  • Cars 3 - 4.0 M$ box office in Poland (38 M people) vs 8.0M$ box office in Spain (46 M people).

As you see, the popularity of the latest Marvel or Star Wars or Pixar movies is on a similar level as with countries from different regions. But you know that - you own this data. 

And what about this data? These are Google trends for your selected titles. We put together nations with similar levels of popularity, and Google is showing us almost the same numbers. There is always much bigger potential to grow in emerging markets right?

Try harder, Disney.

4. The economic level is not as high as in the US or Western Europe.

Yes, that’s true. But you have already entered Latin America, where only a few countries have the GDP per capita (PPP) higher than 20,000 USD. You are in SouthEast Asia, where only 2 countries have higher GDP per capita than 20,000 USD. 

Guess what: most of the countries in Central and Eastern Europe have a higher GDP per capita than 20,000 USD. See here. The Czech Republic and Slovenia have the same GDP per capita as Italy, Spain, or Portugal. 

Try harder, Disney.

5. Piracy is too high in these areas
We bet that you are afraid we are not used to paying for these streaming services. But did you ever think of why? We always get the official stuff much later than you. You got Netflix in 2007 where we got Netflix in 2016. You got Amazon in the US in 2007, and we got Amazon in 2016 and only in English. So if we live in a globalized world like we are living in right now, do you honestly expect us to wait 10 years to get new shows? What happened to the EU single market and why are we getting geoblocked?

Imagine if Facebook, McDonald’s, or Apple waited 3 or 5 years to release the new service or goods. What would happen on the market? And can you imagine what will happen now when everyone gets the news that all the Marvel or Star Wars shows will not be officially available? With every MONTH of your delay, people will be more OK with just pirating your stuff. 

Try harder, Disney.

6. The competition there is just too big.
No, it’s not. You fight in markets like the US or UK, where every studio or producer has their own streaming service. In Central and Eastern Europe we've got only Netflix, HBO, and Amazon. No Paramount, no Peacock, no other big brand from Hollywood. Local players are significant, but with local content, which is not your real competition.

And the others? Netflix got the best traction, but it’s been slowing down in the last couple of months because of the lack of good and quality original content. Amazon is almost invisible: no real competition there. And HBO just delayed the HBO MAX upgrade for next year, so you missed the best opportunity to beat them.

Try harder, Disney.

And just one final reason. You have positioned yourself as the company supporting minorities, emancipation, and other fights against oppression, and to overcome historical injustice and celebrate that everyone deserves the same behavior.

So why do you, even 30 years after the fall of communism and the Iron Curtain, still divide Europe into “Western” and “Eastern”? A lot of states in Central and Eastern Europe are part of the EU, NATO, or OECD, yet you still treat us as second grade customers and deny us your services, even with the single EU market..

Once again. Try harder, Disney. 

Launch Disney+ in Central and Eastern Europe as soon as possible.

With love from your fans from

  • Albania
  • Belarus
  • Bosnia
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Czechia
  • Estonia
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Montenegro
  • North Macedonia
  • Poland
  • Russia
  • Romania
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Ukraine

Support us with signing this petition and sharing on social media with hashtag #TryHarderDisney

If you want to help with translation to your language or you have any other questions, contact us on tryharder.petition@gmail.com

About us: we are avid movie, TV shows, and streaming fans and we have already created a successful Change.org petition to bring Netflix Czech subtitles to Slovak consumers.

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