'Milking Us For Every Dollar Spent': Netflix to Charge for Password Sharing Starting Early 2023
The streaming giant is testing new ways for users to share passwords.
The end of an era has finally arrived.
Netflix announced in a letter to shareholders on Tuesday that the company would begin its crackdown of charging for password sharing in early 2023, after months of warning and opposition from subscribers.
"After listening to consumer feedback, we are going to offer the ability for borrowers to transfer their Netflix profile into their own account, and for sharers to manage their devices more easily and to create sub-accounts ("extra member"), if they want to pay for family or friends," the company said. "In countries with our lower-priced ad-supported plan, we expect the profile transfer option for borrowers to be especially popular."
Revenue and membership numbers surpassed Q3 2022 expectations, the company said, maintaining that the recipe for success for the latter end of the year and beyond is by "pleasing members."
But with extra fees for password sharing on accounts, it remains to be seen just how pleased legacy members will be.
Original story below.
The golden days of using your roommate's brother's friend's girlfriend's password to access Netflix might soon be over thanks to a new announcement by the popular streaming service.
"We've always made it easy for people who live together to share their Netflix account, with features like separate profiles and multiple streams in our Standard and Premium plans," Netflix explained in a statement. "While these have been hugely popular, they have also created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared. As a result, accounts are being shared between households - impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members."
The company was clear to point out that though it isn't stopping members from sharing passwords, it will begin charging them to do so.
Two new features will be tested in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru — one where users can add "sub accounts" to their accounts for users not in their households which will have separate passwords for a lower price than the normal subscription price and the ability to transfer profile information to a new account while keeping viewing history and recommendations.
"We'll be working to understand the utility of these two features for members in these three countries before making changes anywhere else in the world," Netflix said.
Naturally, people were less than thrilled.
To those of you who have my Netflix password.. it's been a real one. Look like the fun is over. I wish you guys well in whatever you are using to get you entertainment— Can I peg you, @SethRogen ?? (@MrsKhandiCoated) March 16, 2022
Hey @netflix before y'all crackdown on password sharing I want y'all to know at this point you guys are extremely replaceable don't let greed be your downfall— Samuel (@SamuelShabazz) March 17, 2022
@netflix I saw that pilot program you're launching. How do you expect families to handle password sharing in the case of divorcees, their children, or college students away from home? We already pay a lot for it, now you're just milking us for every dollar spent.— Sam Gray (@swimmergirl427) March 17, 2022
Listen here @netflix password sharing is what made Netflix become the successful empire it is today. 1) the monthly pricing constantly is increasing— Latina Barbie OPM (@CrazeeStacey) March 17, 2022
2) now you are looking for other ways to increase revenue this isn't the way to do it !
@Netflix are you hoes gonna lower the price if people stop sharing passwords?....if not, you b***hes need to pipe down with the fee threats. People already paying QUADRUPLE what they were paying when you mfs got started. DONT test people's loyalty. you not the only option no more— Ashley Nicole (@alwaysnicole90) March 17, 2022
The fall of @netflix has arrived. On behalf of the world cause we all sharing the password: Y'all have us all the way f'd up. Prices keep rising but we can't share our password.— Smitty (@_teetwotimes) March 17, 2022
Netflix must think they invincible or something trying to stop folks from sharing passwords.— shun (@flaugewest) March 17, 2022
Many lamented the company's fees and increase in pricing, while others called the company "greedy" and pointed out that Netflix is no longer the "only option" for streaming services anymore.
This will not be the first time that Netflix has tried to crack down on users' infamous password sharing.
Last year, the company tested two-step authentication before users logged in on a different device that the account owner would have to approve of via phone or email before the account would successfully log in.
The streaming giant also raised subscription prices this past January in the U.S. and Canada, with U.S. prices increasing up to $15.49 for standard plans and a $2 bump to premium plans which are now $19.99.
Netflix was down just shy of 30% year over year as of Thursday afternoon.