Netflix plans to crackdown on password sharing
Just let us live our cheap lives, Netflix.
There are two types of people: those who give out their Netflix passwords willy-nilly and those who take Netflix passwords without hesitation.
Can I get some extra points for the use of ‘willy-nilly’?
Most people I know – including myself – fall into the latter category. Actually, I’d go as far as describing a fair few of my buds as ‘streaming vampires’. Once they’ve got your password, that’s it; they’re bleeding you dry for all eternity.
I’m not that bad. But I am an ageing millennial who can’t always afford to eat solid foods or wash his face, so like many big kids, I use dear old dad’s Netflix password to skimp on the subscription costs.
To be fair, they are pretty steep and if you add on other subscriptions like Amazon Prime, Disney Life and Spotify etc. and it all adds it up.
And Netflix has recently shot up the prices for its UK subscription packages; a standard account is now £8.99 a month (that’s well over a £100 a year) and a premium account is now £11.99.
Long story short – Netflix is one of those luxuries that if I can nab for free, I’m going to.
Netflix investigating password sharing
So imagine my fear when I heard that Netflix was cracking down on what many like to call “Netflix leeches”.
The topic of password sharing was brought up at Netflix’s Q3 2019 earnings interview (thanks a bunch, whoever you are). If you’re an industry nerd and have a spare 40 minutes, check it out.
The question was put to Greg Peters, Netflix’s chief product officer, who made it clear that the company was aware of password sharing on the streaming service.
Although he didn’t reveal any specific aces up Netflix’s sleeve to combat this, he did stress that the company was looking into it.
Peters said that the company is looking at “consumer-friendly” ways to address the issue of password sharing.
He said: “We continue to monitor it so we’re looking at the situation. We’ll see those consumer-friendly ways to push on the edges of that.”
Here’s a little glimmer of hope I can bestow upon my darling, leeches – Peters did say that the company were keen to fix the issue “without alienating a certain portion of [its] user base.” That’s us. Phew.
Okay, so maybe ‘scared’ was the wrong word, but my guard is up for sure. Until anything concrete is announced I’m going to continue to leech loud and proud. Hopefully they won’t kick me off before Christmas, because their festive content looks seriously sexy.
And don’t get me started on their Halloween content.
Competition around the corner
With all that being said, I do understand why Netflix are starting to get ancy about their incomings – there’s a storm coming in the world of streaming services and its name is Disney Plus.
Disney Plus is an upcoming streaming service that sounds far too good to be true (like a fairytale, you could say). Not only will the subscription give you total access to Disney’s acclaimed vault of ‘Animated Classics’ – ideal for lazy (*coughs* hungover) Sundays – there will also be a slew of brand-new original films and TV shows exclusively created for the platform. Content from the likes of Walt Disney Studios, Marvel, Pixar, LucasArts, National Geographic, and Fox.
In short: Disney Plus is going to be a dream come true, but a total nightmare for companies like Netflix.
I might even pay for Disney Plus.