U.S. Senator Wants Netflix To Make Streaming Free For The Holidays To Limit COVID-19


There are so many streaming services available these days that very few people are either willing or financially comfortable enough to shell out for them all. Quibi discovered firsthand just how competitive the market has become when it folded after less than eight months in existence, while HBO Max and Apple TV+ both took a lot longer to reach 10 million subscribers than many analysts had predicted.

Disney Plus, meanwhile, is doing just fine, delivering exactly the sort of performance you’d expect from the all-conquering corporation’s in-house platform, racking up over 86 million subscribers in just thirteen months, with the latest projections indicating it has a real shot at matching Netflix‘s customer base of almost 200 million by 2022.

Coronavirus vaccines may be rolling out in the near future, but the holiday season could see a surge in infections around the world as families gather together under one roof. And to try and combat the almost inevitable rise in COVID-19 cases, Maine representative Angus King has urged both Netflix and all of the other major streaming services to make their content available for free over the holidays in an attempt to convince people that staying indoors is much better and safer than mingling with others.

See below for an excerpt from his letter:

“I am reaching out to discuss and consider the unique role that your companies play in providing content-based activities this holiday season. Specifically, I encourage you to temporarily remove any cost considerations for use of your services for current non-subscribers as a public service to who are seeking to remain safe and indoors this holiday season, as opposed to the risks involved as the nation sees a dramatic surge in pandemic cases.”

“Unfortunately, some Americans are likely to choose to ignore public health advice and carry on their typical holiday traditions instead of remaining safely at home. While your platforms would likely experience greater traffic as a consequence of extending service, we encourage you to provide temporary service at no cost to non-subscribers as a way to encourage people to make responsible choices and safely navigate this holiday season.”

If people are already planning to disregard the Coronavirus restrictions, which a lot of folks undoubtedly are, then the idea of a free week of Netflix or HBO Max is hardly going to be enough to make them reconsider. In theory, it seems like a sound plan, one which provides enough entertainment to prevent many from traveling around and could also potentially lead to an increase in subscribers for any platform taking part, but it still feels like wishful thinking on Senator King’s part.