Netflix May Be Looking For A Way To Limit Account Sharing

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Netflix now appears to be performing a small batch test for a new feature that will limit account sharing. That’s following several reports via Twitter and other social media, highlighting a new message that arrives on log-in. Namely, a message that prompts some users to “Start your own Netflix for free today.”

The message is followed by a prompt that informs users they’ll need their own account if they don’t live with the account holder. Below that, there are two options to verify that the user either is or lives with the account’s owner. Those are, of course, via an email or text message. Conversely, users can also choose to “verify later.”

What would a limit on account sharing mean for Netflix users?

Now, Netflix has been back and forth on this issue over the years. Back in the mid-2010s for example, the company’s CEO actively encouraged password sharing. While the above-mentioned notice does show up for some users when they try to use Netflix, it isn’t appearing for everybody. So this could feasibly be a test to see how effective this type of limiting is.


It’s also easy enough to continue watching by choosing to verify later on and continue using the application.

But Netflix could finally be getting serious about the practice of sharing accounts too. The company has historically bled money at every turn. Getting users outside of a household onto their own account could help stem that.

There’s a silver lining, it seems

By imposing this type of limit, Netflix would have more to gain — and potentially a better chance for users to get their own account instead of sharing. And that seems to be the goal here. Netflix, according to one spokesperson, seems to be more concerned with ensuring that people using Netflix accounts are “authorized to do so.” That could mean that this is only meant to pertain to users who don’t have the account holder’s permission to access the account.


After all, the sharing of accounts is likely a significant part of how Netflix has become such a popular app and streaming service.

For the time being, Netflix doesn’t look to be denying anybody accessing its service after serving up the new notice. Moreover, the notice itself doesn’t appear to be widespread and the message does offer a 30-day free trial for those who sign up for their own account.