Netflix Subscribers Threaten to Quit If Commercials Added: 'I'm Gone'

Netflix users are raging at the possibility of the streaming giant introducing commercials following a loss of subscribers.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has repeatedly denied that advertisements would become part of the company's business model.

"No advertising coming onto Netflix. Period. Just adding relevant trailers for other Netflix content you are likely to love," Hastings wrote on Facebook in 2015.

However, more recently, Hastings has toyed with the idea of introducing adverts to users of Netflix if they wanted to pay a lower price for their subscription.

"Those who have followed Netflix know that I have been against the complexity of advertising, and a big fan of the simplicity of subscription," he said on the company's earnings call, according to a New York Times report.

"But as much as I am a fan of that, I am a bigger fan of consumer choice. And allowing consumers who would like to have a lower price, and are advertising-tolerant, get what they want makes a lot of sense."

Netflix also admitted that it had lost 200,000 subscribers in the first three months of 2022, according to the New York Times.

In a letter to shareholders, it claimed the loss of subscribers was due to a number of reasons, including increased competition, inflation and password sharing.

Incorporating ads into subscription packages has been met with a backlash by some users of the service, who took to social media to voice their frustration.

Michael Donohoe, the head of product at digital magazine Rest of World, argued that the decision by Netflix would actively go against the intention of the subscription model.

"Hey Netflix, I've been a member since 2006 but if you add commercials i'm gone," he tweeted.

"It's really that simply. I left cable for your service because of ads."

"Not interested in Netflix with ads. And there's a limit to the monthly subscription fee, considering so many alternatives," Editor at Large for Wired Steven Levy tweeted.

"(Plus Netflix can't get me free shipping on stuff). My suggestion: Don't make 9-figure blockbusters."

"Netflix offering ads means its content (or at least some of it) will have to become 'advertiser-friendly" which means... creativity and originality could take a nosedive for their original content," Kate Irwin, a staff reporter at Decrypt, said on Twitter.

"Goodbye Netflix. I won't pay for a streaming service that includes ads, full stop. I'd rather watch nothing at all," Alex Morash, the editor in chief of Options Magazine, tweeted.

Some social media users were more open about the possibility of ads being introduced. Wall Street Journal reporter Joe Flint asked that if Netflix were to introduce ads, it would do so thoughtfully.

"If Netflix is going to have ads, please don't be like some other streaming services which show the same ad over and over again," he tweeted.

"The only thing that does is make me hate the sponsor and the streamer."

However, other Twitter users remarked that they were not surprised Netflix was losing subscribers and that it was now considering using advertisements to cover the costs.

"Netflix lost money?! Naaaaah. That's impossible. It's not like they keep raising subscription costs, or lose content to other platforms, cancel shows due to peer pressure from people who are never happy on the internet. Must be something else," Gavin Sheehan, games editor for online magazine Bleeding Cool, tweeted.

The Netflix logo is displayed at Netflix's Los Angeles headquarters on October 07, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. Netflix users have raged at the possibility of the streaming giant introducing commercials following a loss of subscribers. Mario Tama/Getty Images

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