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Netflix UK launch marred by Facebook backlash

Netflix

By Stewart Mitchell

Posted on 9 Jan 2012 at 10:00

Streaming film company Netflix has finally launched in the UK, but the service has already come in for heavy criticism from potential customers for its sign-up process.

The service went live today - although many users have reported via Twitter that the service was unavailable this morning - offering unlimited access to its catalogue of films and TV programmes for £5.99 a month.

Despite promises of a one-month free trial, a tie-in with Facebook has left users unhappy, and worried that their viewing habits will be posted via the social network.

Users with an open Facebook account on their computer have complained that, by default, Netflix wanted to share what people are watching.

Netflix free trial with Facebook, automatically shares 'everything you have watched, and other Netflix activity'

“'See what Facebook friends are watching and Netflix will share what you watch and more',” posted author and web designer Andy Clarke via Twitter. "I don’t think so!"

The sentiment was echoed by many users amid confusion over whether using Facebook as a sign-up tool was a requirement in order to receive the month's free trial.

"Netflix free trial with Facebook automatically shares 'everything you have watched, and other Netflix activity' unless you unshare," reported Daithí Mac Síthigh, a lecturer at the University of East Anglia Law School.

Other Twitter users claimed that signing up for the service while logged out of Facebook and using private browsing settings enabled registration without linking to a Facebook account.

Netflix has since clarified that Facebook is not required, but still faced criticism for not making the email sign-up options clearer.

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User comments

No Issues

I signed up this morning at 09:00. No issues with the site at all and, seeing as I can actually use my eyes, had no difficulty in spotting the 'sign up with an email address' link instead of using the Facebook settings.

Personally, I think the main cause of people missing it out is that people expect things to be handed to them on a plate these days - they see a big shiny 'Click Here' button and instinctively click it without looking around the screen.

Let's face it, if people didn't behave like that, pop-ups and false adverts wouldn't work with the propagation of viruses....

By bioreit on 9 Jan 2012

No Facebook, please

I certainbly wouldn't sign-up for anything that involves my financial details via Facebook, so I'm pleased they don't insist on that.


Why the F**** do all these companies insist on screwing the last iota of potential 'monetisation' out of everything?

When I buy \ register X I want X not X + Facebook or Google+ or xxxx.

By wittgenfrog on 9 Jan 2012

Its simple to swith off, Stop Ranting about nothing.

There is a big heading that says facebook connect in -your account-

Just click disconnect facebook.

How much simpler could it be FFS!

By stelee79 on 9 Jan 2012

Facebook only option...

... if you are logged into Facebook. If you go to facebook and log out, then you get the lovely "or sign up using an email address" that @bioreit mentions. But it is not there at all if you are logged in to Facebook. Perhaps making it available all the time would curb the frustration.

By MJ2010 on 9 Jan 2012

Yes but why not make the 'option' an option

Having briefly checked-out the sign-up page again the site direcxts you towards creating an account via Facebook.

If its an 'option' then why not make the default a non-facebook login, & have the OPTION to choose facebook after that?

By wittgenfrog on 9 Jan 2012

With a selection like that...

...who would bother?

Not even a vague shadow of it's US service.

Oh, and there is a link underneath the facebook sign-up to join without Facebook.

By colin52 on 9 Jan 2012

Puzzled

Is it just me, or is the content extremely small??

By Steve_Adey on 9 Jan 2012

I have a TV licence

So, I can pay £5.99 a month to watch repeats and stuff I can see on TV. No thanks!

Either that, or the browse selection is working properly.

By Steve_Adey on 9 Jan 2012

Oh, and it says I can watch them again and again. I already have.

By Steve_Adey on 9 Jan 2012

Why the Facebook headline?

Surely, it should come into heavy criticism for being completely crap and having no content.

By Steve_Adey on 9 Jan 2012

Why the Facebook headline?

Surely, it should come into heavy criticism for being completely crap and having no content.

By Steve_Adey on 9 Jan 2012

"Its simple to swith off, Stop Ranting about nothing."

At the point where you are disconnecting Netflix from Facebook, they will already have had access to all of your data, and they get to keep it.

By ssumpter1 on 10 Jan 2012

Sign up to Netflix without Facecbook account

Netflix try to force you to sign up with a Facebook account. They have hidden the option to sign up without Facebook.

To get round this, open your browser in private viewing mode. Only then will you see the option to join without Facebook.

The people here who say "I have eyes and can see it" must routinely use private settings, which makes me wonder what they usually spend their time looking at.

By DogSlobba on 10 Jan 2012

Sign up to Netflix without Facebook account

Netflix try to force you to sign up with a Facebook account. They have hidden the option to sign up without Facebook.

To get round this, open your browser in private viewing mode. Only then will you see the option to join without Facebook.

- Reposted to correct title -

By DogSlobba on 10 Jan 2012

Poor database

Yes, it doesn't exactly meet expectations and yes, their movie selection is sketchy.

By tomim on 13 Jan 2012

However

I am glad they're finally here. I can just record streaming Netflix movies now for free for one month and save them for offline watching (like this: http://audials.com/en/how_to_record_stream_capture
_music_videos_movies_from/netflix.html). How great is that?

By tomim on 13 Jan 2012

The selection in the UK sucks

UK users are better of getting the US version of Netflix: http://vpnfreedom.com/netflix/how-to-watch-us-netf
lix-in-the-uk/

By storm311 on 27 Mar 2012

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