I hate this for all of us.
In a blog posted March 16 to their site under the heading of “innovation” and titled “Paying to Share Netflix Outside Your Household,” Netflix is laying down the company bylaws. It’s been a completely unkept secret since the dawn of streaming that people share passwords. And with Netflix’s option for multiple profiles, it’s always been popular to share passwords on that service specifically. Well, apparently the entertainment behemoth has had enough.
Their post, in very careful PR-minded language, states, “for the last year we’ve been working on ways to enable members who share outside their household to do so easily and securely, while also paying a bit more.” That’s cute that they couch wanting to squeeze more money out of all of us in enabling users to “stream securely,” but corporate capitalists are as corporate capitalists do.
The blog revealed that Netflix will be testing features that give members the option to add up to two “sub accounts” for people they don’t live with, while also giving people the option to migrate profile data like watch lists and preferences from currently shared accounts to sub accounts or separate accounts. But for now, unless you’re in Chile, Costa Rica, or Peru, you can still share passwords and rest easy. The rollout of new policies and pricing begins as a trial for members in those areas first, “before making changes anywhere else in the world,” according to the service.
The streaming wars have been heating up for years now, and it seems it is finally reaching the pockets of the consumers as the titans duke it out for superiority. Currently, Netflix has 221 million subscribers, bringing in roughly $1 billion a month, but it’s apparently not enough to compete with Amazon and Hulu. In their blog, Netflix does list wanting to continue to create original content as another reason for the change in sharing practices. They might be right in wanting increased funds to “step their p*ssy up” as RuPaul says, seeing as Amazon has just closed on acquiring MGM Studios in an $8.5 billion deal. Ultimately, the streamers will continue to compete for the position of top dog, and that’s likely to continue to cost consumers more as these companies look for ways to increase their budgets to keep up.