Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Hulu and password sharing

An email sent to Hulu subscribers this past week indicates the service is beginning to crack down on password sharing.

On January 31, this showed up in my email:

We're Updating Our Subscriber Agreement

We wanted to let you know that we are making some updates to our Subscriber Agreement.

These terms will apply as of January 25, 2024 for new subscribers. For prior and existing subscribers, like you, these terms will be effective beginning on March 14, 2024, unless you acknowledge an in-app notice of these changes earlier. Until then, the terms of our prior agreement apply.

We encourage you to review the updated Subscriber Agreement in full and save a copy for your files. Once effective, it will govern your use and enjoyment of your Hulu subscription. We are as committed as ever to making sure you have an enjoyable streaming experience. Please visit our Help Center for more information about your subscription.

We have highlighted some of the changes for your reference:

  • We're adding limitations on sharing your account outside of your household, and explaining how we may assess your compliance with these limitations.
  • We're updating aspects of our dispute resolution policies, including terms related to choice of law and updates to the arbitration agreement to be more specific about the procedures for resolving any disputes relating to your subscription and our services, and to offer you the choice to “opt out” of resolving disputes through arbitration.

Thank you,
The Hulu Team

So, what does this mean? What changed?

Both the old terms and new terms state:

c. Restrictions on Your Use of the Services. You agree that as a condition of your license, you may not and agree not to:

share your login credentials with third parties;

So it already says no password sharing? Yes, it already said that. But you know people. And so does Hulu. They added the following:

m. Account Sharing. Unless otherwise permitted by your Service Tier, you may not share your subscription outside of your household. “Household” means the collection of devices associated with your primary personal residence that are used by the individuals who reside therein. Additional usage rules may apply for certain Service Tiers. For more details on our account sharing policy, please visit our Help Center.

So, either some people played stupid, or actually were stupid, when it came to the rules for no password sharing. This is stupid language for stupid people.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not taking up for Disney vs the little guy. But, they are the content owners and service providers. Yes, I give them my money, but they do get to set the rules. If I don't like the rules, I don't have to subscribe to their service.

My Streaming Life has included Hulu since I dropped cable in early 2011. Hulu is cheap, with the price now at $7/month. I haven't shared my password, and don't plan to. This policy change doesn't impact me at all. But if it impacts you, maybe you should ask yourself why.

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