Netflix’s Drastic Measures Against Password Sharing
Password sharing is the act of sharing the password of an account to which someone has subscribed to. This tends to happen when a subscription is quite expensive, so everyone shares the account and each pays their portion of the fee. Netflix is one of the expensive ones where many people tend to share the password with friends and family in other households/locations. Netflix has always encouraged password sharing, so why are they so against it nowadays, and what are the measures they are taking to end it?
Why does Netflix want to end Password sharing?
In Netflix’s earlier years, they were one of the very few streaming services that provided a subscription with an easier way to watch content. This made Netflix grow tremendously and quite quickly. Eventually they began making Netflix Originals that also contributed to new users. Netflix’s original goal was to get as many eyes as possible and as many views as possible on their content which is why they even posted to Twitter stating that “Love is sharing a password”. Password sharing made Netflix more available and brought more people onto the streaming platform, therefore providing the views that Netflix wanted. Through the years, more streaming services have risen such as Disney +, HBO Max, Hulu, and more. This gave Netflix a huge amount of competition that they were not prepared for. Netflix lost many subscribers due to these new streaming platforms and consequently, they lost lots of money. To make up for this, Netflix has been more focused on series and movies that are bringing in new subscribers rather than more viewers which may also be contributing to the recent large amount of cancelled tv shows and movies. The only way for Netflix to make up for the loss of money is to get everyone from different households who were previously sharing someone else’s account to subscribe to an account themselves.
How does Netflix plan to control password sharing?
Netflix can track the location and device that is being used on. This means that Netflix will start to ask for people to set up a main location in settings and every month, they will ask for a check in. If the device is not in the main location, then the device will be blocked, and they will be given the option to open their account with Netflix. Another one of Netflix’s tactics is to give people the option to pay extra in order to share their account with people in a different location, and they have also added a cheaper subscription with ads hoping to make Netflix more available to people who cannot afford even the most basic package. These plans have already begun to take place in Latin America, Portugal, Spain, Canada, and New Zealand and have also started in the United States and the UK. Netflix expects to spread these changes more broadly by the end of the first quarter of 2023.
Many people around the world are extremely unhappy with Netflix’s decisions since their subscription prices are already extremely high when compared to other streaming services. Although Netflix’s plans are understandable due to the loss in money, Netflix should have been more prepared from the start to deal with competition and this has resulted in their final hopes to regain their money. With everyone’s current hatred towards Netflix’s new plans, it is possible that this may backfire and end up causing Netflix even worse problems, but only time will tell.