Netflix made an announcement regarding its truly global expansion at the start of the year, and soon it started to clamp down on VPN users. The company’s war against VPN users has been covered widely by the media, and it appears that it has no intentions to back away from its decision.
Netflix wants all to respect content rights
There are many Netflix users who use VPNs to bypass geo-restrictions on content, which means that it is possible for Indian Netflix users to access content available to U.S. users. However, with Netflix’s stance against VPN users, it is not possible to do so. Recently at a round-table discussion at Netflix’s head office in Los Gatos, Calif., CEO Reed Hastings said that whatever content the company acquires from producers, it has an obligation to respect the rights to it.
“Someone else has paid for the rights in Germany, so we should respect that, just as we would expect the same in return,” Hastings said.
The basic point Hastings is trying to put across is that everyone has to respect the fact that Netflix does not have the streaming rights for all content on its platform for all countries. Subscribers will have to understand this, and, going forward, they should not expect Netflix to continue the old practice of letting subscribers stream content in a country where they do not have a license to stream it.
Such an argument from the streaming firm does make sense, but some VPN users argue that not all of them rely on VPNs to bypass geo-restrictions. Instead, they use them simply to protect their online privacy, while others want to evade throttling by their ISP. But for Netflix, all VPNs users are the same, including those who are not making any such attempts to bypass content restrictions.
Very serious about content rights
Netflix’s seriousness about obeying content licensing is not only hurting VPN providers, but Internet service providers are also facing troubles in getting around the restrictions. For instance, Singapore’s MyRepublic emailed all its subscribers saying that its VPN-like Teleport service now won’t make it possible for subscribers to watch the U.S. version of Netflix, says a report from Tech in Asia.
“Over the past month we have been working with customers to test and evaluate different options. Some methods worked but only for a limited period. Over time, we observed that Netflix’s proxy detection and blocking process is ongoing, complex and evolving,” read an email from MyRepublic.