Netflix Inc. expanded into more than 130 countries simultaneously last month including the world’s largest population, India. It managed to do it without even a single technical glitch in any of the regions. Even after being so careful of not giving any major problems to customers, customers are causing problems for the streaming platform. Company officials are not currently satisfied with the geo-dodging tricks and the excessive use of VPN (virtual private network) by the Australian users.
Previously, it was believed that Netflix’s threat to take action against this activity was an empty threat for almost a year, but it seems more than that now. The streaming giant is fulfilling its promise by banning the VPN users from its platform. Sources suggested that majority of Australian users were involved in accessing the more superior US catalogue of online movies and TV shows using VPN services. The firm is now all set to block all the illegal and unethical accesses from its streaming subscribers. As Australian News report, Netflix has ‘set in motion a blocking war’ with far reaching consequences.
The streaming giant is doing all it can to put a halt to such activities. It launched in Australia and New Zealand at the same time in March last year where the TV consumers were badly awaiting it. It was much of a fanfare than Netflix’s need to expand in other regions.
Analysts say that the streaming service provider started to lose charm when the subscribers found out about the relatively small size of the catalogue compared to that of the United States. This was the main issue for not only the Australian subscribers but other non-U.S. subscribers as well. They consequently found a way to get their hands on Netflix’s U.S. content.
The superiority of the U.S. content can be noted that more than 340,000 streaming subscribers already signed up for the service prior to its launch in the country. The reason behind this was to not only get to use Netflix for streaming purposes earlier than expected but to get access to the wide ranged US catalogue. It all started with 340,000 users but the numbers are now swelled up and majority does not want their own country’s catalogue.
When the company announced crackdown and started to block such users, they expressed their anger on different social media platforms. Many existing subscribers who used to access the U.S. version stated that they would not renew their membership at any case whereas others mentioned that blocking would only bring distance between the streaming giant and them.
Netflix thought about taking care of the unblockers and proxy users after its launch in Australia. At first, CEO Reed Hastings stated that it might be impossible to eliminate such activities and behavior in the near future but recently, it has been put under immense pressure from the Hollywood studios and different right holders to make it all stop.
Vice president of content, David Fullagar, said, “In coming weeks, those using proxies and unblockers will only be able to access the service in the country where they currently are. We are confident this change won’t impact members not using proxies.”
As the process has begun, people who are using a VPN service to access Netflix will be ‘greeted’ with a black screen and an error message. Everybody knew that Netflix has come up with a fix but it is only temporary. The popular unblocking service in Australia, uFlix, stated that it would find new ways to bypass the internet firm’s ban. The Melbourne-based company takes $2 per month from its users to allow them unlimited access to the US content.
The managing director of uFlix, Peter Dujan, said in a statement, “Unless some sort of technology comes out that no one’s ever heard of before, pretty much anything implemented can be bypassed. As long as what we’re doing remains legal, there’s no issue.”
Australian News added that the Australian viewers might have won the battle temporarily but they have set a battlefield for a war with Netflix.