Netflix Have Proposed an Extra Charge for Password Sharing

Jack Redmond

The rise of streaming services and the variety of content to enjoy in one’s spare time has changed how modern audiences watch movies and television.

Instead of needing a DVD player or a TV guide, to watch Netflix the viewer just needs to pay the monthly subscription cost and login through the app on a phone, tablet, laptop or TV.

Password sharing is when one person with a Netflix subscription shares their login information with someone outside their household (it could be shared with an extended family member or friend) giving the other person access to Netflix content without an account of their own.

But there is a proposal by Netflix to charge extra money for password sharing to viewers not living together and is already being experimented in three South American countries. So is Netflix and their attempts to impose extra charges on those sharing their password fair?

Netflix offer a decent collection of movies and television series for a monthly subscription fee and in order for one to access content, viewers should pay that fee.

If viewers want to watch already successful movies like The Irishman or popular TV programmes like Stranger Things, Mindhunter or After Life as some examples, then Netflix like any subscription service need to receive monthly revenue to provide new content in the future.

Netflix have stated “accounts are being shared between households – impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members”.

However, the biggest issue with Netflix introducing an extra charge is the already imposed price increases in its monthly subscription rates.

If Netflix kept a consistent rate it might attract or keep more people subscribing. So why would Netflix look at introducing extra charges for password sharing and raise its monthly cost for consumers?

Well Netflix have heavy competition with Disney+, HBO Max and many other newly established streaming services.

Unlike Netflix, many of these streaming services are subsidiaries to holding companies like Disney streaming Star Wars or Marvel content on their platform.

As CNBC reported Netflix no longer have the licensing to “Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Punisher and The Defenders [and] are available on Disney+”.

So is Netflix proposing a password sharing fee greedy; or is it because of password sharing itself they need extra revenue?

Forbes last month reported “Netflix’s stock on Monday [March 14th] sank to its lowest point since the start of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020”.

One person sharing a password with a friend is not going to bankrupt Netflix, but unlike before the company now have a lot more competition and have to be more alert to the obvious factor that people once subscribed to Netflix may find a new streaming platform.

Netflix’s experimentation to charge extra for password sharing makes sense based on the service and quality content they provide, but it’s really just an extra fee due to heavy competition in an industry they once thrived in.

Jack Redmond

Image Credit: Pixabay