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Netflix is cracking down on proxy users in dramatic fashion

January 16, 2016 · 1 min read
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Last week, #netflixeverywhere trended on Twitter as the video streaming company continued its globalization drive with expansion to over 180 countries (excluding China) with our beloved Nigeria catching the Netflix bug with the rest of the world.

Even with the seeming global presence of Netflix, the nature of content licensing is different, so the TV shows and movies that are available in America might not be watched in Nigeria. And for years, users have remedied this with virtual private networks (VPNs) and proxies that lets you bypass the geographically restricted content.

But in a move slightly negating its Netflix everywhere hashtag, Netflix blocks proxies being used to watch programmes not meant for designated regions.

In a post on the Netflix media blog, David Fullagar, Vice-President of Content Delivery Architecture at Netflix, said that in the coming weeks, those using proxies will no longer be able to bypass regional content restrictions.

He said that Netflix still had a long way to go before the company can offer the same titles across different regions in the countries they operate, and until then, users just had to stick to the movies designated for their locations.

Before the globalization effort, the use of VPN has always reigned supreme and Netflix have been making low noises about disabling it, citing difficulties to disable proxy users. But the wide reach has evidently put the problem on a more global scale.

Surely there were widespread protests as there are more titles for the Netflix USA audience in comparison to other regions and the price is basically the same.

This news surely comes with a lot of mixed feelings, since its berth in Nigeria, some of us have been looking to ‘netflix and chill’ on the yankee side with proxies. But this bubble buster really changes everything up. Let us wait and see how it pans out.

Victor Ekwealor

Victor Ekwealor

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tech. media. startups. africa. vc | Twitter: @victor_ekwealor

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