Are Canadians really stealing Netflix content intended for the United States?

By qqtqtqt etqt

Mary Ann Turcke, Bell Media’s new president, recently reported to that Canadians are stealing Netflix content. Specifically, Turke believes that Canadians who are hiding behind virtual private networks to access video streaming services only intended for United States subscribers are thieves.

Regarding the issue, Turcke said, “It’s stealing, just like stealing anything else.”

How are Canadians actually committing this act of thievery and why? And is it even criminal?

RELATED TOPIC: Is 2015 the year of mCrime?

This whole issue came to prominence when Turcke’s own daughter discovered that she was able to log onto the U.S. Web streaming service in Canada when using a U.S.-based VPN to mask the address. The teenager quickly discovered that U.S. Netflix offers additional movie and TV content versus the Canadian version.

When it comes to choosing a new show or movie, why do Americans have more choices than Canadians? Perhaps the concern has something to do with distribution rights. Regardless, there seems to be a bit of a grey area in determining whether or not the act of VPNing is actually criminal.

“She was told she was stealing,” Turcke said. “There is no more VPNing.”

Furthermore, VPNing runs against the California-based company’s terms of use—Netflix has threatened to sue.

RELATED TOPIC: Rogers and Shaw team up to challenge Netflix

However, it’s currently estimated that one third of Netflix Canada customers access various types of content that is only intended for U. S. subscribers. In the end, Bell Media’s CTV English-language network and other broadcasters will need the support of government and the federal regulator, which could prove to be difficult considering that “how to” articles on getting around copyright laws have been published online and in national newspapers.

RECENT TOPIC: Minimum wage could be on the rise in Canada—Who will benefit and who will suffer?

So, the question resumes: is VPNing actually criminal or just morally wrong?

Turcke only further cemented her stance on the issue by saying, “Discoverability does not mean, at least to me, watching whatever you want for free.”

Perhaps more will consider this act to be a crime when a portion of the one third committing it is actually caught and prosecuted.

RECENT TOPIC: How small businesses can protect themselves from legal disputes with customers


Let's Connect!


Read the latest edition of Business Review Canada!


Featured Articles

Amelia DeLuca, CSO at Delta Air Lines on Female Leadership

Driving decarbonisation at Delta Air Lines, Chief Sustainability Officer Amelia DeLuca discusses the rise of the CSO and value of more women in leadership

Liz Elting – Driving Equality & Building Billion-$ Business

Founder and CEO Liz Elting Turned Her Passion into Purpose and Created a Billion-Dollar Business While Fighting for Workplace Equality – and Winning

JPMorgan Chase: Committed to supporting the next generation

JPMorgan has unveiled a host of new and expanded philanthropic activities totalling US$3.5 million to support the development of apprenticeship programmes

How efficient digital ecosystems became business critical

Technology & AI

Mastercard: Supporting clients at a time of rapid evolution

Digital Strategy

Why Ceridian has boldly rebranded to Dayforce

Human Capital