Netflix Nixes Feature That Gave Patches to Kids for Watching TV

Mar 14, 2018 3:13 pm PDT by Juli Clover

Netflix has decided to stop testing a new gamified TV streaming experience for children, which offered kids "patches" (aka stickers) for watching episodes of certain television shows.

Netflix started testing the feature in February, but it received widespread attention last week after the beta test was highlighted by various media sites. Given the negative attention Netflix received over the feature from parents concerned about their children watching too much TV, Netflix has decided not to move forward with development.



In a statement to BuzzFeed, Netflix said the testing for patches has ended and the feature will not be implemented.

"We've concluded the test for patches and have decided not to move forward with the feature for kids. We test lots of things at Netflix in order to learn what works well - and what doesn't work well - for our members."

During the beta testing period, there were several complaints about the feature from users who encountered it, with customers sharing their negative opinions on Twitter and other social networks. Netflix was accused of attempting to turn children into "binge watchers" through the patch program.


Netflix was testing the feature with a small number of users, with patches provided for shows like "A Series of Unfortunate Events," "Trolls," "Troll Hunters," Fuller House," and more. Netflix said the feature was aimed at providing collectible items for a "more interactive experience" and to "expand the storytelling world for the show."

Users who were part of Netflix's test group will no longer be seeing patches when watching TV shows.

Tag: Netflix

Top Rated Comments

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34 months ago
Earning rewards for watching the kind of content available on Netflix is like earning rewards for every bag of Cheetos you eat.
Score: 8 Votes
34 months ago
Did Netflix really think there wouldn't be major backlash from parents in response to this?
Rating: 7 Votes
34 months ago

These parents complain as though they don't have control over their children's content. If their kids aren't watching 100 hours of shows per week on Netflix, they're watching 100 hours of videos per week on YouTube.

Perhaps you shouldn't offer parenting advice as an obvious non-parent. It might not be quite as simple as you assume with your zero experience.
Rating: 7 Votes
34 months ago
These parents complain as though they don't have control over their children's content. If their kids aren't watching 100 hours of shows per week on Netflix, they're watching 100 hours of videos per week on YouTube.
Rating: 7 Votes
34 months ago
I love the parents claiming anyone who isn’t opposed to this can’t be a parent.

Perhaps you shouldn't offer parenting advice as an obvious non-parent. It might not be quite as simple as you assume with your zero experience.

Hmm, perhaps your kids will pick up on your behavior of jumping to bizarre conclusions.

If you want to say that gamifying tv would make your life more difficult as a parent, please do so as such information is valuable, but your comment looks extremely childish the way you presented it.
Rating: 4 Votes
34 months ago

Doesn't matter. Giving someone a digital reward to be sedentary is incredibly irresponsible and the blowback would be HUGE against Netflix. This was a business decision, and a correct one.
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The difference is that this is gamifying TV watching rather than, you know, GAMING.

If only they could gamify homework...

"ACCOMPLISHMENT: Studied 5 days in a row"
Rating: 3 Votes

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