Netflix said Thursday that it will ask customers who have not watched anything on the video on demand streaming service for a year or more if they wish to maintain their subscription – and will cancel their membership if it does not respond.
The company said it had started informing customers who hadn’t looked at the platform in the past 12 months since they became subscribers to see if they wanted to keep their subscription. The company also caters to those who haven’t released anything for more than two years, she added.
“Do you know that sinking feeling when you realize you’ve signed up for something but haven’t used it for a long time?” At Netflix, the last thing we want is for people to pay for something they don’t use, “said the company.
This unusual decision illustrates how much Netflix trusts its loyal customers. Most companies are happy to withdraw their share from their members’ bank accounts or credit cards for as long as they can.
Netflix said these inactive accounts – better known as zombie accounts in the industry – only represent a few hundred thousand users, less than half of 1% of its overall member base – a fact that the company is already taking into account its financial guidelines.
The streaming service, which had more than 182 million subscribers at the end of March 31, says it will be easier for those whose accounts have been canceled to join the platform if they wish to return. Those who reinstate within 10 months will still have their favorites, profiles, display preferences and account details as they left them.
“In the meantime, we hope this new approach will save people hard-earned money,” said Eddy Wu, Product Innovation at Netflix, in a statement.