Netflix is back in the spotlight once again and it’s not for a new hit show. Big changes are coming to our accounts after Netflix released new password-sharing guidelines at the beginning of February and Canadians are not impressed.
February 21st is the day that many Canadians will find themselves locked out of their accounts. The new password-sharing regulations had already started rolling out in Canada, New Zealand, Portugal and Spain back when they announced the changes earlier this month but didn’t take effect until today. The new regulations are intended to give the owner of the account more control over who has access, meaning that many Canadians who share accounts with other people will be kicked off. Krys Montgomery, a 19-year-old student attending Sheridan College who shares an account with their family says that the changes don’t make much sense, “if people are sharing their accounts then there is a reason why they’re sharing an account,” says Montgomery. The company announced in an article that they estimate that over 100 million households are sharing their account, which greatly impacts their ability to invest in new TV shows and movies.
An article published by Netflix stipulates that “an [Netflix] account is intended for one household and members can choose from a range of plans with different features”. In Canada, a Standard plan costs $16.49 a month while the Premium plan costs $20.99 every month. If you wish to add what Nexflix calls “an extra member sub-account” to your household, it will cost an extra $7.99 on top of your Standard or Premium plan every month to add the extra member. To even have the ability to add an extra member to your Netflix account, to begin with, you must have a Standard or Premium plan. If you do create your own account, it is possible to have your profile transferred to the new account.
For many Canadians, having their own Netflix account is not a possibility. Jisoo Kang, a 19-year-old student attending Sheridan College says that if she gets kicked off the account that her aunt pays for, she won’t be able to afford her own account. “If I do get kicked out of the Netflix account then like I can’t afford it because of college stuff [tuition and residence],” says Kang. According to Global Data, Netflix lost about one million subscribers between April and June of 2022 due to a price increase in the monthly payment plans.
In order to make sure that you’re not sharing your Netflix account with others outside your family, you’re going to be required to set a primary location before being able to watch anything. If you travel or own a second house, every month you must log into Netflix via the mobile app on the wifi from where your primary location is to keep watching while on the go.
The changes aren’t just affecting Canada, but other counties as well. If you are in one of the other counties affected, it’s the same situation. You either create a whole new account for yourself or pay the extra fee.