Netflix Is Testing Charging Users For Using Their Accounts Outside Of Their Household

Bad news if you’re a Netflix fan and like to share! While Netflix has great kids programming, movies and original series, one of their big perks for reality tv watchers is just that – their reality shows! I’m talking Love Is Blind, Too Hot To Handle, Selling Sunset. And I cannot forget Tiger King. I will always remember that wild documentary when I think of the start of the pandemic. It provided us with a brief escape during scary times and man, it was fun to talk about.

But now Netflix is trying to crack down on those of us who, how shall I put this….let our friends log into our account. So they can watch for free, of course. Or maybe you are that friend. And why not? I’m sure Netflix makes plenty of money. So what’s their deal? As reported by People, the company announced that they have “been working on ways to enable members who share [their Netflix accounts] outside their household to do so easily and securely, while also paying a bit more.” A fancy way for saying – hey, people, stop giving our goods away for free!

The streaming service’s release appeared under the heading, “Paying to Share Netflix Outside Your Household.” The statement said that “features like separate profiles and multiple streams in our Standard and Premium plans” have “created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared.” Lol. No confusion on my part. You? It went on to read, “As a result, accounts are being shared between households — impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members.”

The announcement was made by Netflix’s director of product innovation, Chengyi Long. She confirmed that Netflix is launching and testing new features related to password sharing. Subscribers will be able to “add sub accounts for up to two people they don’t live with” for an added price. The other feature being tested would allow subscribers to transfer their profile information, like what shows they are watching. This could be done with a new account of an “Extra Member sub account.”

Testing will start in three countries – Chile, Costa Rica and Peru. Although the announcement confirmed that “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.” The release also added, “We recognize that people have many entertainment choices, so we want to ensure any new features are flexible and useful for members, whose subscriptions fund all our great TV and films.”

The additional change is coming just two months after Netflix inflicted more pain on their North American subscribers. The standard plan (offering HD streaming on two different devices at the same time) is up in cost from $13.99 to $15.49/month. Their premium plan (offering the same but with four devices at one time) was raised from $17.99/month to $19.99/month. Am I the only one who didn’t even know this was an option? Anyway. Netflix also has a basic plan that went up by $1, bringing the total to $9.99/month.

The Netflix website reads, “these prices apply to new members and will gradually take effect for all current members. Current members will receive an email notification 30 days before their price changes, unless they change their plan.” At the time, a Netflix spokesperson said, “We understand people have more entertainment choices than ever and we’re committed to delivering an even better experience for our members.” The spokesperson concluded, “We’re updating our prices so that we can continue to offer a wide variety of quality entertainment options. As always we offer a range of plans so members can pick a price that works for their budget.”

TELL US – WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS ANNOUNCEMENT? HOW MANY PEOPLE DO YOU SHARE YOUR NETFLIX ACCOUNT WITH? OR DO YOU USE A FRIEND’S ACCOUNT? WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SHOW ON NETFLIX? 

[Photo Credit: Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images]