Almost 45,000 people signed a petition to request Netflix, Inc. (NFLX) to reverse its decision of banning VPN usage for streaming purposes.
Netflix Inc. began its crack down operations on the VPN users late last year when it got annoyed of all the illegal streaming activities going on for a while. The blocking of users who were geo dodging got vigorous when more people jumped on the bandwagon from more parts of the countries. Initially it all started from the likes of Canada and Australia but slowly it reached New Zealand and United Kingdom as well. A huge number of Netflix streaming subscribers were involved in streaming illegal content that was not meant for their regions.
Hence the cat and mouse game started between the users and Netflix and the VPN services and Netflix. On one hand where the company was fiercely blocking the VPN users, the services were coming with alternative methods to bypass the gates of Netflix one way or another. Netflix however so far seems to be the temporary winner of this battle as this is not over yet. However the customers are not happy at all and are dissatisfied with the way Netflix is going forward. Banning users has been one thing so far this year and the other is the price hike which have concerned the subscribers a lot.
In order to protest against the crack down operation, almost 45,000 subscribers signed a petition to ask Netflix to stop its blockage process. A letter was signed by all 45,000 people directed to the CEO of the company Reed Hastings to request for a change in decision and reverse the VPN ban for streaming purposes. The letter was sent to Reed Hastings by OpenMedia which started off by mentioning that the customers do not have anything against the streaming service provider and they all love Netflix. However the main issue is that they do not like how it keeps its privacy.
The letter said, “Watching quality content, and knowing that creators are being compensated in the process is great. But we also love our privacy. And lately, as your subscribers, you just haven’t been treating us well. [Blocking VPN connections] is a huge problem for our privacy conscious supporters, who use VPNs as an essential, user friendly tool to protect their privacy in a post Snowden world.”
The letter from the petition signers also mentioned that they are not being unreasonable at any cost. Irrespective of the matter that Netflix has contractual obligations and are being pressurized by the content license owners, there are other ‘better’ ways to handle this thing as well to show respect for the creators.