Starting last year, Netflix ramped up its efforts to stop password-sharing among its subscribers, going market by market. According to the streaming giant, its slow and steady roll out was the key to success.
“We’re completely satisfied with the pace of it,” Netflix co-CEO Ted said Monday at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference. “It was good to take it slow. That’s why we didn’t do it in one fell swoop,” he said.
The slow crackdown, which began in Latin American in 2022 after the streamer lost subscribers for the first time in a decade, also gave Netflix the opportunity to assess individual markets and customer reactions, according to Variety. The program didn’t come to the U.S. until the second quarter of this year.
The immediate reaction to news of a crackdown was negative. Despite the initial backlash, Netflix’s plan to convert password-sharing viewers to paying customers worked. In August, the streaming service reported an influx of 2.6 million subscribers.
Netflix’s success has prompted other streaming services to take action against password sharing. Disney+ and YouTube Premium have announced their own plans, but more services could follow suit in the future.
Password sharing isn’t allowed by policy on most – if not all – streaming services, but the practice has historically gone overlooked. The last few years have proven financially tumultuous for the entertainment industry as a whole, forcing companies like Netflix to re-examine their liberal stance on the issue. A majority of platforms are trying to keep customers while making money. This isn’t an easy task when more and more consumers are looking for ways to save money.
Hundreds of millions of households are still sharing passwords, according to Netflix, which means the crackdown is an ongoing process. The company said in October that there are still customers in the U.S. that haven’t been affected by the crackdown, with the company waiting for new offerings and options before going after everyone.