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How to keep sharing Netflix with your household

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Remember that time when Netflix said, "Love is sharing a password"?


If you don't, I promise you'll see that many people on Twitter do. On Netflix's help page at the beginning of February, they briefly "leaked" info on new password-sharing rules, then pulled it shortly after.

It sounded like they were playing R.Kelly's "I Don't Mean It" - 'They say it's not that serious for us to split, and admit sometimes they make mistakes. They might say you can walk, but they don't mean it.'


Do they???

In a recent blog post, Chengyi Long, the Director of Product Innovation at Netflix, announced that the company will be cracking down on password sharing in the coming months, starting with a rollout on February 8th in Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, and Spain. This news may come as a disappointment to those who have been sharing their Netflix accounts with others.

(At this time, this change does not affect customers in the United States, but we all know it's coming.)

What they really want is to stop people from sharing passwords with others who live outside of their " Household", but what determines a household? According to their site, "A Netflix account is meant to be shared in one household (people who live in the same location with the account owner)."

I agree with rules and you should follow them, but it makes me think about many of my friends that travel for months at a time for work, military families, students, and snowbirds that live in another city or region for many months at a time.

For example, my son is currently going to school in Flagstaff where he is staying in a dorm. Should I not consider him still part of my household? My home is still his primary home. He will still be visiting on holidays and breaks, and will probably be back home after school before he finds a job with his career and gets his own place. Until then, this is his household.

If a device is away from the primary location for more than 30 days, it will have to connect to the primary location or household and stream content to then again be considered in the household. This is how the "ban" is believed to work, but. . . If Netflix is using IP addresses to determine who's in a household, I've found a solution to the issue.

Netflix has been exploring different approaches to address the issue of password sharing, claiming it's focusing on giving members greater control over who can access their accounts. The company is introducing several new features, such as the ability for members to set a primary location, manage account access and devices, and transfer profiles. However, these new features will not solve the issue of password sharing for those who have been sharing their accounts with others.

This is where NordVPN comes in, it has a new(er) feature called Meshnet. When turning on NordVPN's Meshnet, primary account holders (households) can allow other users/devices to access their home network and use their local IP address as if they were on the same network. This way, users can continue to share their Netflix account with others, even if they are not physically present in their household.

I just tested this with my son who's away for school in Flagstaff. I had him check his IP address with showmyip.com. There are many ways to check your IP address, but for most this is an easy way. In addition to showing your IP address, you'll get information about your city, region, and ISP. The IP address at a remote location will be different than the one at your home. After turning on Meshnet and selecting to route all traffic through my household device in the Nord app, checking the IP address again at his location in Flagstaff now showed the same IP, city, and region info as my home showed. (I tried this on Google TV and PC)

If you read that and are wondering "what does that mean?", it means you're Dikembe Mutombo. Basically, other devices (and Netflix) will think they are at your house (or the households).

NordVPN is available as an app on a variety of platforms, including Google TV, Amazon's Firestick, Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac. Currently, there is not an app for Roku or Apple TV, but it is possible to use certain routers with NordVPN installed on them.

Using NordVPN's Meshnet feature is a simple and effective way to bypass potential restrictions on password sharing for those who think Netflix may wrongly place you and family members outside of your household.

By signing up for NordVPN here, users not only get access to the Meshnet feature but also the ability to browse securely with one of the highest-rated VPNs there is, no matter where they are.

Once you have the app, open it. Don't turn on the VPN. You don't want your home (household) to have an IP address that is different than what it's supposed to be.

 Select Meshnet on the menu to turn it on.

Here you'll see your device and others that you've logged into your NordVPN account. Your main device will be at the top, with others listed below. Each will be given names of mountain ranges (that's just the way they do it). Select the "Route all traffic" button next to your other devices that are temporarily outside of your home, and then if you were to check the IP address at showmyip.com it will now show the IP, city, and region of your home. 😊

That's it!

Netflix's crackdown on password sharing may be bad news for those who have been sharing their accounts with others, but by using NordVPN's Meshnet feature, users can continue to share their Netflix accounts with others in their household, even if they are not physically present there.
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