When is a price increase not a price increase? When Netflix says it isn’t.
The streaming giant is now alerting existing subscribers that the price of their monthly plans will increase by $1-2 a month in the next month or so. Netflix announced last month that, effective immediately, it was raising the price for its three plans for new customers. The company said then it would inform existing customers in the coming weeks that their prices would increase as well and it is now doing that via e-mails.
But it’s how they are doing it that’s raising eyebrows.
A Netflix e-mail sent this week to existing subscribers carried this subject line: “We’re updating our prices — here’s why.”
The e-mail, titled ‘Updating prices to bring your more,’ Netflix writes that “we hope you’re enjoying everything Netflix has to offer. We’re updating our prices to bring you more great entertainment. Your monthly price will change to (new plan price) on March 12, 2022.
“This update will allow us to deliver even more value for your membership — with stories that lift you up, move you or simply make your day a little better.”
Netflix does not mention anywhere in the e-mail that the subscriber’s monthly price will increase, not just be ‘updated.’ Perhaps the company is hoping that subscribers won’t notice the difference.
However, some Netflix viewers do see the difference and they are registering their distaste for the Orwellian wordplay in comments on social media posts.
“This update will allow us to deliver even more value for your membership — with stories that lift you up, move you or simply make your day a little better. Sorry, this does not justify the price hike #netflix Just be honest. You want to make more money. It’s ok to admit that,” tweeted @thatthinkingman.
“At least call it a price increase. Too funny. Crappy…but funny also,” added @shipleytweets.
“Straight out of Black Mirror,” @Davidsternberg wrote in response to the e-mail while @rider45 suggested sarcastically that Netflix was trying to paint the price increase as “new and improved prices.”
Have a question about new TV technologies? Send it to The TV Answer Man at email@example.com. Please include your first name and hometown in your message.
— Phillip Swann