A petition to make Netflix free during lockdown has over 75,000 signatures

27 April 2020, 13:22

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Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

"This petition asks that all worldwide streaming services enact a temporary 60 day stoppage of membership charges"

Many of us started this lockdown with the best of intentions. We made promises to ourselves to take up some exciting new hobbies or develop a new skill, read all those books that have been piling up on your bed side table, or just get round to the boring life admin you've been putting off for years.

But let's be real. Most of us have been logging in to Netflix and staying there until we get a screen prompt hours later asking if we're still watching because you've been watching Too Hot To Handle for five hours (and yes we are still watching, thanks for asking).

That's all to say that bingeing Netflix has become an essential survival tool for many to keep boredom at bay. However, not everyone has the luxury of having Netflix to keep them company. But this petition is looking to make Netflix available to everyone.

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Petition to make Netflix free during lockdown hits 75,000 signatures
Petition to make Netflix free during lockdown hits 75,000 signatures. Picture: Getty / Netflix

Someone has started an online petition to make Netflix free during lockdown to encourage others to stay home. View the petition here.

Now, we thought this was a joke at first, but the original creator of the petition seems deadly serious. In the petition description they write:

"During a worldwide viral pandemic, social distancing and personal quarantine is vitally important to stem the risk of spreading disease. As a result, right now millions of people worldwide are keeping themselves at home in order to prevent community spread of the COVID-19 virus.

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"While this is a heroic and necessary challenge, it also runs the risk of boredom and isolation, which can lead to depression, among other factors. Many people are turning to their streaming services to alleviate their monotony. The problem with this is that many people cannot afford these membership fees, especially in a time like now when many people's economic livelihood is already strained. 

"Therefore, this petition asks that all worldwide streaming services enact a temporary 60 day stoppage of membership charges, as well as per-movie rental fees.

"If people can watch as much as they want, whenever they want, this will help alleviate the stress of home isolation, as well as encourage people to stay home. This is a responsible community health strategy."

The petition already has 75,000 signatures, and it's rising rapidly. However, not everyone is on board with the idea. In fact, the comments below are quite savage.

"This is the stupidest petition I have honestly ever seen" writes one user. "Don't you all know there are quite a few apps/channels you can download that offer movies/tv shows/live tv completely free? Don't forget about antennas either. They still work and offer plenty of channels to watch at now charge."

"This is petition is the pinnacle of entitlement", wrote another.


Do you think Netflix should be free during lockdown?