Netflix combats VPN region bypassing by blocking some residential IP addresses

Burty117

Posts: 4,235   +2,285
Because what Netflix pays for content in the US could be different than in the UK. And not only what they pay but who they pay. If you simply allow unfettered access to programming anywhere from anywhere you are potentially bypassing the lawful owner of that content and they may not get paid.

It's not an epic win because Netflix could be held liable for allowing unauthorized users to access content they should not be able to access. The copyright laws are truly a complex mess and need to be reworked.
We don't have this issue with Music? I can easily listen to American Music on any streaming service here in the UK. Yet I cannot stream American shows?

If I pay for Netflix in the UK, then use a VPN to watch something on American Netflix, why wouldn't whoever made the show get paid from me streaming it?
 

waclark

Posts: 105   +66
We don't have this issue with Music? I can easily listen to American Music on any streaming service here in the UK. Yet I cannot stream American shows?

If I pay for Netflix in the UK, then use a VPN to watch something on American Netflix, why wouldn't whoever made the show get paid from me streaming it?
As it so happens, you do have this issue with Music. It's just not enforced as much. For example, musicians in the UK may not get paid when streaming music from the US. See this article.

While you pay Netflix, ,and I guarantee you it's not Netflix that is raising a stink, the copyright holder or distribution company may not be the same in the US and UK. So, for every show that is played where money should go to a UK company, the money, instead, goes back to the US. That's likely a simplification, but you can read up on it here.

Don't ask me to explain why this is, other than what the article states. But it's very F'd up because when those laws and many of those contracts were written up there was no such thing as streaming, much less computers at home. I'm not defending the practice, just that I understand why Netflix is trying to maintain some control over it.
 

Burty117

Posts: 4,235   +2,285
As it so happens, you do have this issue with Music. It's just not enforced as much. For example, musicians in the UK may not get paid when streaming music from the US. See this article.

While you pay Netflix, ,and I guarantee you it's not Netflix that is raising a stink, the copyright holder or distribution company may not be the same in the US and UK. So, for every show that is played where money should go to a UK company, the money, instead, goes back to the US. That's likely a simplification, but you can read up on it here.

Don't ask me to explain why this is, other than what the article states. But it's very F'd up because when those laws and many of those contracts were written up there was no such thing as streaming, much less computers at home. I'm not defending the practice, just that I understand why Netflix is trying to maintain some control over it.
You might just be one of the best commenters on here in ages. Well explained, nicely written and backed up with links. I like you <3

Still mad though, That's a system in dire need of change, If I was to take a guess, the reason it hasn't been changed is because they actually make more money (somehow) this way.
 

3volv3d

Posts: 409   +209
Because what Netflix pays for content in the US could be different than in the UK. And not only what they pay but who they pay. If you simply allow unfettered access to programming anywhere from anywhere you are potentially bypassing the lawful owner of that content and they may not get paid.

It's not an epic win because Netflix could be held liable for allowing unauthorized users to access content they should not be able to access. The copyright laws are truly a complex mess and need to be reworked.
I do understand, I just hate the copyright thing, as you say needs reworking.
50 years isn't it then it's the public's? Gone with the wind or something has this come up and they wanted it to stay in copyright.
Had a hissy fit.
Everything that's out of copyright should be forever accessible on the cloud or whatever, for the public to enjoy or just to preserve. IMO.
Its copyright trolling. Lawyers trying to make a Buck ambulance chasing, or in this case meta chasing.
One take down notice asked one company to ban 127.0.0.1.
Its now all copyright bots sniffing your underwear to see what you've eaten, where you been, who with, when. Its going too far.
 

jpuroila

Posts: 388   +235
As it so happens, you do have this issue with Music. It's just not enforced as much. For example, musicians in the UK may not get paid when streaming music from the US. See this article.

While you pay Netflix, ,and I guarantee you it's not Netflix that is raising a stink, the copyright holder or distribution company may not be the same in the US and UK. So, for every show that is played where money should go to a UK company, the money, instead, goes back to the US. That's likely a simplification, but you can read up on it here.

Don't ask me to explain why this is, other than what the article states. But it's very F'd up because when those laws and many of those contracts were written up there was no such thing as streaming, much less computers at home. I'm not defending the practice, just that I understand why Netflix is trying to maintain some control over it.
From a consumer's point of view the issue isn't money, but availability. The pay to the musicians may be more or less, but the same content is available regardless of whether I'm in the US, UK or EU (I'm sure there may be some exceptions, but I've certainly not heard of any major musicians or publishers whose content is available in select regions only). The same is decidedly not true for video streaming services. If a show is available in Netflix in the US but not in my region, then my options for legitimately viewing it may be severely limited or even nonexistent.
 
what's wrong with just requiring a US issued credit card for example?)

They aren't trying to limit access by citizenship, but by current location. I am a US citizen, and I have 5 US credit cards. However, I haven't lived in the USA for nearly 15 years. The solution is for Netflix to negotiate with the rights holder, and make a global library available to everyone. Netflix doesn't charge me less when I am in a country, whose Netflix library is only 30% of the USA library content.
 

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 3,165   +872
Staff member
We don't have this issue with Music? I can easily listen to American Music on any streaming service here in the UK. Yet I cannot stream American shows?

If I pay for Netflix in the UK, then use a VPN to watch something on American Netflix, why wouldn't whoever made the show get paid from me streaming it?
You must not have tried to share one of your Spotify playlists with a US subscriber then. Music is also region-locked. I learned this just recently when a UK friend tried to share a Spotify list with me. Even though I had access to every song on his list, he still could not share it. I ended up just recreating his list as a list of my own. Out of curiosity, I tried to share that with him and... nope. I could share it with others who were in the US though.
 

Burty117

Posts: 4,235   +2,285
You must not have tried to share one of your Spotify playlists with a US subscriber then. Music is also region-locked. I learned this just recently when a UK friend tried to share a Spotify list with me. Even though I had access to every song on his list, he still could not share it. I ended up just recreating his list as a list of my own. Out of curiosity, I tried to share that with him and... nope. I could share it with others who were in the US though.
I hadn't tried that! What's wrong with companies? Did they just not learn anything in the past 30-40 years?
 

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 3,165   +872
Staff member
I hadn't tried that! What's wrong with companies? Did they just not learn anything in the past 30-40 years?
Nope.

EDIT: What I don't get about the list thing is that this is something that Spotify could fix fairly easily. Granted, Song A-UK and Song A-US are two separate versions of the same song and cannot be shared in the opposite region. that makes sense.

But a list is just a list. All Spotify would need is an algorithm that converts the list to the proper region. There really is no reason that a song list cannot be shared.

A rough analogy would be if I created a fruit basket with various fruits in it and you wanted one but I couldn't send you the one I created because of import/export restrictions so in so instead I send a list of fruit and instruction on how to make the basket to a local market in your country to make it and deliver it to you. Nothing is stopping me from sending those instructions and nothing should be restricting Spotify from translating a UK list to a US list and vise versa other than laziness.
 
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waclark

Posts: 105   +66
From a consumer's point of view the issue isn't money, but availability. The pay to the musicians may be more or less, but the same content is available regardless of whether I'm in the US, UK or EU (I'm sure there may be some exceptions, but I've certainly not heard of any major musicians or publishers whose content is available in select regions only). The same is decidedly not true for video streaming services. If a show is available in Netflix in the US but not in my region, then my options for legitimately viewing it may be severely limited or even nonexistent.
I completely understand the consumer's issue. The problem is the content providers have decided, for whatever reason, that not all content should be available in all places. Even in the US, sports events are not available in every State. They are blocked depending on the region. For example, I cannot watch a Seattle game when I am in Phoenix, unless that game is nationally televised. I could VPN to a Seattle server and try to stream it but for the most part that is blocked (I know, I tried).

As for music, I can't speak to the entire musical catalog around the world but I do know that not all musical content is available everywhere. The problem, however, isn't availability of content, it's who gets paid in Region 1 versus Region 2. For example, The Rolling Stones may own all the music rights for their catalog in the UK, but they may have sold their US rights to another person or group. Hence, if you're streaming US Rolling Stones content they may not get paid anything for that, unlike if you were listening to a UK source.
 

p51d007

Posts: 2,853   +2,217
Netflix....the Blockbuster of the 2000's.
By the time studios pull all of their movies, for their own streaming services, other than Netflix
content, there won't be much worth watching.
I've never watched netflix. I already pay for Amazon Prime (until it comes due in September).
 

DrSuess

Posts: 140   +109
I don't use a commercial VPN service, I have a firewall with a VPN. I just VPN to my home network and it for all intents and purposes looks like I am in my home country. I can use netflix and they are none the wiser as they know nothing about my VPN connection to my firewall.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 6,540   +4,937
They aren't trying to limit access by citizenship, but by current location. I am a US citizen, and I have 5 US credit cards. However, I haven't lived in the USA for nearly 15 years. The solution is for Netflix to negotiate with the rights holder, and make a global library available to everyone. Netflix doesn't charge me less when I am in a country, whose Netflix library is only 30% of the USA library content.
This is the best suggestion that I have heard from this thread. It would be great if that were done with all content, IMO.

The only problem I see with this is that some other content provider might already have rights to distribute that content in another region. Due to that, it gets complicated.

Doctor Who and BBCAmerica/ BritBox, for instance.
 
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wiyosaya

Posts: 6,540   +4,937
I don't use a commercial VPN service, I have a firewall with a VPN. I just VPN to my home network and it for all intents and purposes looks like I am in my home country. I can use netflix and they are none the wiser as they know nothing about my VPN connection to my firewall.
Clever, and perhaps the only way around it. Unless, of course, Netflix were to somehow block your home IP address.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 6,540   +4,937
Netflix....the Blockbuster of the 2000's.
By the time studios pull all of their movies, for their own streaming services, other than Netflix
content, there won't be much worth watching.
I've never watched netflix. I already pay for Amazon Prime (until it comes due in September).
Netflix does not only have other provider's content. IMO, much of the attraction to Netflix is their original content - some of which is exceptional, IMO.
 
Or imagine that, they could stop the dumb license war and make everything available globally, actually benefiting the user instead making more money? I know, that sounds horrible practice, who would agree to that, and this does not only impact netflix.

I would pay for it, but now the only way is to go get some torrents
at least this means less vpn sponsor deals and ads, witch is good, they are misleading a lot of ppl with it and making money of fools
 

waclark

Posts: 105   +66
Or imagine that, they could stop the dumb license war and make everything available globally, actually benefiting the user instead making more money? I know, that sounds horrible practice, who would agree to that, and this does not only impact netflix.

I would pay for it, but now the only way is to go get some torrents
at least this means less vpn sponsor deals and ads, witch is good, they are misleading a lot of ppl with it and making money of fools
I'm not so sure world-wide licensing would benefit the consumer. What would happen is a smaller number of companies would control the content and that is likely to keep the cost high for the consumer. Also, not every company has the people and "infrastructure" to deliver content across the globe. It would certainly be easier for larger corporations to do that, which may or may not be a good thing.
 

Old Molases

Posts: 72   +10
There nothing that will stop people from accessing content libraries from other countries. VPNs are known for this and on way or the other they are going to turn things in their favor.