Following the announcement by Netflix that it will begin cracking down on VPN ‘piracy’ to bypass geoblocked content, a number of Australian users have threatened to cancel their accounts with the video-on-demand platform, citing sub-standard native content, news.com.au reports.
mum emailed me geo-block Netflix article & I said I'll cancel my subscription if they actually do it (Aussie Netflix is not worth the money)
(@homewreckwifey) January 15, 2016
— Cambo (@OGCambo) January 15, 2016
#Netflix is renewing efforts to catch VPN traffic. I think the effort would be better spent on securing global distribution rights.
— Bayan Qandil (@BayanQ) January 14, 2016
Sample Netflix items per country
— thomas violence (@thomas_violence) January 14, 2016
Others argue that the move, in the absence of legitimate options, will only encourage illegal downloading:
Oh well. Thanks Netflix. I guess after Australia’s rates of internet piracy went down, now they’ll probably go back up again.
— matty randall
(@mattRan) January 15, 2016
What annoys me most about the Netflix geo-blocking crackdown is that it punishes people paying money for a service. Not stealing content.
— Jen Dudley-Nicholson (@jendudley) January 15, 2016
While Netflix’s original shows – including the likes of House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, and Narcos – is available in all territories, independent of its geographical locks, it marks only a small fraction of the company’s content, much of which is tied to regional licensing agreements.
“If all of our content were globally available, there wouldn’t be a reason for members to use proxies or “unblockers” to fool our systems into thinking they’re in a different country than they’re actually in,” David Fullagar, Vice President of Content Delivery Architecture at Netflix, wrote in his announcement of the VPN crackdown. “We are making progress in licensing content across the world and, as of last week, now offer the Netflix service in 190 countries, but we have a ways to go before we can offer people the same films and TV series everywhere.”
“We are delivering Netflix to 190 countries around the world. Our diverse slate of Originals and licensed programming should provide a service members find valuable no matter where they’re watching,” a Netflix spokesman told news.com.au. “As we continue to strive towards licencing content on a global scale, along with our slate of originals which launch globally simultaneously, the use of VPNs will become redundant.”