Netflix says its anti-password sharing rules were posted by accident
Just days after announcing new rules aimed at cracking down on password sharing amongst users, Netflix has claimed that these were posted by accident.
To recap, earlier this week the streaming giant revealed that devices using a Netflix account would need to be logged into their "home" network every 30 days, otherwise the account would be blocked. Updating its help centre page, the platform noted that a "Netflix account is for people who live together in a single household" adding that "people who do not live in your household will need to use their own account to watch Netflix."
Essentially, by tracking information through IP addresses, device IDs and account activity, Netflix planned to work out which users were logging in from different locations and therefore step in if it believed the account was being used by a non-household member.
Unsurprisingly, the move did not go down well with Netflix subscribers, with many taking to social media to call out the new rules – especially during a cost-of-living crisis. "This new @Netflix anti-password sharing rule is so stupid. What about students? What about people who travel? I literally pay for one and won’t be able you use my own account after 30 days of leaving home?? Make it make sense," one person tweeted.
Now, Netflix has said its new rules were posted by mistake. "For a brief time yesterday, a help centre article containing information that is only applicable to Chile, Costa Rica and Peru went live in other countries," a spokesperson for Netflix told The Guardian. "We have since updated it."
On socials, not everyone was convinced, with some claiming that Netflix had made a U-turn because of the backlash. "Is anyone shocked about this? Even remotely? I knew they would backpedal from this. There was going to be blowback, probably to the point of people canceling Netflix, thereby Netflix losing money (more than they are)," one person tweeted, as someone else said: "Netflix backtracking on the password rules gives me hope for the power of the consumer."
Whilst our Netflix accounts (paid for or shared) seem safe for now, it's certainly possible that these rules will come into effect in the near future. "As we roll out paid sharing, members in many countries will also have the option to pay extra if they want to share Netflix with people they don’t live with," the streaming giant has said, acknowledging that restrictions on account sharing would be "a change for members who share their account."
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