Netflix Testing Commercials Between TV Episodes

Netflix has been testing ads on its service, much to its users' ire.

Reddit users, who are presumed to be based outside of the U.S., complained that the service was giving them ads for other Netflix programs with no option to skip.

One user complained that Better Call Saul ads were appearing while binge-watching the animated sci-fi comedy Rick and Morty. Rick and Morty is available on some foreign Netflix platforms, and Netflix is the exclusive distributor of Better Call Saul in some international markets.

Another user alleged that ads for the crime documentary series I Am a Killer, a Netflix original series, were appearing during an another licensed show not available in the U.S. service, Bob's Burgers.

Reactions began pouring in on the Netflix subreddit, and most of them are extremely angry about the prospect of ads being introduced to Netflix.

"This is what drove me from Hulu immediately," one user wrote. "If I pay you for a subscription and you still serve me unskippable ads, you can f— right off.

"I will cancel permanently if ads of any kind appear while I am watching Netflix," another user wrote.

As the outrage began to spread, Netflix told Ars Technica that the ads were not a permanent installment; it is only a test. They also denied that the ads did not display the option to skip them. They claimed users able to move past the ads with a click of a button.

The service also aligned these promos as similar to the various autoplay options they have installed in recent years.

"We are testing whether surfacing recommendations between episodes helps members discover stories they will enjoy faster," Netflix representative said. "A couple of years ago, we introduced video previews to the TV experience, because we saw that it significantly cut the time members spend browsing and helped them find something they would enjoy watching even faster."

Netflix statement does not include any details about the tests, such as platform, time range or what regions are included in the test.


In response to this news, Reddit users recommended others opt out of future tests such as this one using this link, logging into Netflix and turning off the option to be included in tests and previews.

Netflix has not offered any further comment on the ad tests.