25 Comments

Summary:

Select Netflix members are getting a chance to hide viewing of embarrassing titles from logs, recommendations and Facebook friends.

We’ve all been down that road: You decide to watch some roadhouse B-movie fare on Netflix, hoping that it will be fun on some level, but it ends up just being a very bad choice — one that you and everyone sharing your account are reminded of the next day, and that your friends may even see as well, if you have chosen to share your viewing with Facebook.

Netflix may be able to help you with those B-movie binges soon: The company is starting to test a private viewing mode. Cliff Edwards, the company’s new director of corporate communications and technology, described the tested feature this way in an email:

“At Netflix we continuously test new things. In this case, we are testing a feature in which a user watching a movie or TV show can choose to view in “Privacy Mode.” Choosing that option means the program will not appear in your viewing activity log, nor will it be used to determine recommendations about what you should watch in the future.”

Disregarding titles viewed in privacy mode from future recommendations should also help to influence the quality of those recommendations, especially if you hand over your remote to visitors or house-sitters who use your Netflix account.

The feature is being tested across all of Netflix’s markets, and tests could go on for a few months, but not every user will have access to it. Edwards said that a general roll-out will very much depend on how the feature performs in these tests. “We may not ever offer it generally,” he cautioned.

  1. Not on facebook. I usually ignore Netflix’s recommendations.

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  2. L.A. Goldenrod Friday, July 18, 2014

    So, “B-Movie” is the preferred euphemism for soft-core porn. Got it.

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    1. Except that they don’t have any.

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  3. This should not be a test. They should turn it on for all ASAP!! Idiots.

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    1. I look forward to the day netflix closes shop.

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      1. And we all look forward to the day you get some intelligence.

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      2. Logan Grant Monday, July 21, 2014

        i look forward to the day you stfu and get a life

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      3. You must work for Comcast.

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  4. There’s more than one NSA

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  5. lulumarkit@gmail.com Sunday, July 20, 2014

    Will this feature be optional, and will the ability be there to turn off this functionality? I’m thinking of my children who could easily begin watching wildly inappropriate movies/shows without our knowledge.

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    1. ken schultz Sunday, July 20, 2014

      They already have.

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    2. Right, because why should you have to actually pay attention to what they are doing/watching?

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      1. ^ This.

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  6. If you’re ever ashamed of something you see on Netflix you may want to consider therapy or at the very least get new friends and disown your family.

    Talk about pointless shame… Seriously folks, there are some solid fetishes out there that would make baby Jesus cry. Hint: Get one of those.

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  7. I just want a rating filter so i dont have to see any movies with a two star rating or lower.

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  8. Couldn’t this be solved by… you know not connecting everything to your social media account? I don’t have this problem at all, because I wouldn’t ever connect anything like this to anything else!

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    1. It’s also the for the hubby who’s been watching titty movies at 3am and doesn’t want his wife to find out. Or worse, the kids to hit play on the last watched movie, which is something like “Naughty Alien Girls Go Camping”.

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  9. sathish rao Sunday, July 20, 2014

    Can’t they start this by making the log-in based on the profile rather then Account/Domain ? For eg., currently there can be multiple profiles created per Account & once a user logs in to his Account, he can look into any profile in the account. So, there is no privacy across profiles of an Account.

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  10. Netflix should bring better fare to their audience rather than waste resources on flip – flap.

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    1. Because this is how a company works? The Content Acquisition team is constantly negotiating and fighting to improve the quality of the offerings, while the Programming teams improve the quality of the service, UI, app stability, etc. Just because they coded a Private Mode doesn’t mean they put their best content negotiators on coding duty…

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