From original series like The Crown and Bridgerton to bingeable shows like Schitt’s Creek and Grey’s Anatomy, Netflix has an abundance of great streamable content worthy of a subscription. Yet with new streaming services popping up seemingly every week, it can be hard to keep up with them all!
It comes as no surprise then that sharing passwords with friends and families to streaming platforms is quite common. In fact, according to research firm Magid, about 33 percent of all Netflix users have shared their password with at least one other person. While this never seemed to be a big concern to the streaming platform, it appears that they may start cracking down on this practice.
As first reported by The Streamable, Netflix has recently rolled out a test to a number of customers to tackle the issue. Those in the trial are prompted with a message stating, “If you don’t live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching.” To get their Netflix binge on, the user needs to enter a verification code sent to the email or phone number on file.
While The Streamable was able to get confirmation from a Netflix spokesperson that the test was enacted to ensure people using the account are authorized to do so, there isn’t any information on the length or scope of this test, much less if this will eventually become standard procedure for all accounts.
What Gossip Cop does know is that according to Netflix’s terms, accounts are not allowed to be shared outside of the owner’s household. And back in October 2019, Netflix’s Chief Product Officer Greg Peters commented that password sharing was a practice they would continue to monitor and look at user-friendly ways to address. It appears that time has finally come.
With new streaming services popping up left and right, the competition for subscribers is getting even more intense. Netflix appears to be very confident that their catalogue of content is compelling enough for viewers to pay for their own account. In fact, their video content budget has been growing significantly since 2013, with a whooping budget of $19.03 billion slated for 2021 alone.
If you’re one the many password sharers out there, only time will tell if you’ll need to finally bite the bullet and sign up for an account or deal with angry friends and family members locked out of yours.