I run Netflix from a browser because I like searching using the keyboard. I also don't find the distance from the screen to be a problem -- however, I sit 13' from a 92" screen in the theater. However, in another room I sit about 9' from a 42" TV and that is a little hard on the eyes unless you scale the desktop up.
The bottom line is that people use their HTPCs differently, I think we all need to calm down and accept that. This is like raging about Chevy vs. Ford -- they're pretty much the same thing.