Netflix Bulks Up Parental Controls With New Features

Netflix is adding more parental controls to its platform, just to make sure your children do not accidentally start watching Daredevil without a parents' approval.

Although the primary subscription user has been able to create four-digit PIN numbers to restrict access to accounts, Netflix plans to create PIN-based controls for individual movies and TV shows, reports Variety. That way, parents can be even more selective about what children can watch.

"We understand that every family is different and that parents have differing perspectives on what they feel is appropriate to watch at different ages," Netflix director of enhanced content Mike Hastings wrote in a blog post. "While we already provide PIN protection for all content at a particular maturity level for Netflix accounts, PIN protection for a specific series or film provides families with an additional tool to make decisions they are comfortable with."

Netflix also plans to display the TV show rating or movie rating more prominently when a title begins. The company provided an example with Trolls, where the PG MPAA rating was seen in the top left-hand corner with "some mild and rude humor" under it.

trolls netflix new parental protection
(Photo: Netflix)

"While these maturity ratings are available in other parts of the experience, we want to ensure members are fully aware of the maturity level as they begin watching," Hastings wrote. "We are also continuing to explore ways to make this information more descriptive and easier for our members to understand with just a quick glance."

To set these new parents controls, subscribers can chose two levels. "Soft controls" set the maturity level for a whole profile. "Hard controls" allow you to create the four-digit PIN number to set controls for specific shows.

There are four age-based maturity levels: for little kids only; for older kids and below; for teens and below; and all maturity levels.

Netflix said it has already started rolling out the changes to some members. The changes will be coming to international markets in the "coming months."


"At Netflix, we are proud to create and deliver to our members a large catalog of compelling stories crossing many genres from all over the world, while also giving them great control over how and when to enjoy them," Hastings wrote. "These latest steps are part of our continuous efforts to keep members better informed, and more in control, of what they and their families choose to watch and enjoy on Netflix."

Photo credit: Netflix