Netflix slammed for password crackdown fail as users get surprise charges – why this could be good news
NETFLIX has cracked down on password-sharing but things are not going according to plan.
In March, Netflix rolled out an initiative that charges customers who share their account passwords with people outside of their household.
The pilot program was unveiled in three Latin American countries: Peru, Chile, and Costa Rica.
And now the streaming giant is facing problems in its Peru market.
What exactly is the problem?
Currently, the test fee in Peru for sharing account passwords with anyone outside of the bill-paying household is $2.99.
However, Netflix subscribers in the country are claiming they were never formally notified of this fee and are seeing surprise charges.
And the users who did receive a notification about the test are claiming they did not receive the same messaging as others.
What’s more, subscribers say they have not been subject to the same policies, Rest of World reported.
Basically, while some subscribers have faced penalties, others have only received account prompts with no fees.
This, in turn, has led to much backlash for Netflix.
In response, the streaming service said: “While we started working on paid sharing over 18 months ago, we have been clear for five years that ‘A Netflix account is for people who live together in a single household’.”
“The millions of members who are actively sharing an account in these countries have been notified by email, but given the importance of this change, we are ramping up in-product notifications more slowly.”
Why is Netflix doing this?
Netflix said in a statement that they were implementing this initiative because password sharing is essentially bad for business.
“Accounts are being shared between households – impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members.”
However, because they’re seeing such a negative response from their subscribers in Peru, they might hold off on implementing the fees in other, larger markets.
It’s unclear at this time when exactly Netflix plans to enact this fee in the United States.
“Judging by the fragility of the company’s US subscriber base right now, Netflix needs to be sure that these surcharges are introduced in the most effective way possible,” Axel Metz writes for Tech Radar.
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