According to the Japan Times, NHK has urged Netflix to cease distribution of all 22 of its titles following the launch of Netflix’s new advertisement-supported subscription tier. On Wednesday, Netflix eliminated commercials for NHK programming and continued to stream the programs.
NHK produced anime include A Silent Voice, Bubble, A Whisker Away, Drifting Home, Violet Evergreen: The Movie, Mirai, Fireworks, and more.
According to The Japan Times, Netflix issued a statement in which it stated that NHK had previously agreed to ad-supported streaming. NHK stated that the ad-supported service was not what it expected, and that Netflix did not explain the service to NHK until just before it started.
NHK’s internet-related service guidelines prevent licensors of its content from distributing said content if there is a risk of giving the impression that it is advocating or advertising a specific product or service.
Netflix stated that talks with the network are ongoing.
On November 3, Netflix introduced its new ad-supported “Basic with Ads” membership tier in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Brazil, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, and Australia. Netflix previously claimed that due to licensing concerns, a limited amount of its titles will not be available in this tier, which it was “working on.”
The new subscription tier includes four to five minutes of ads each hour and a maximum resolution of 720p for video, with no content downloading for subsequent viewing. The adverts run for 15 to 30 seconds before and throughout the program. Advertisers can focus their advertisements based on country and genre.
Netflix announced in April that it was investigating creating a lower-cost ad-supported streaming tier. Netflix made the news after reporting a 200,000-subscriber drop from January to March, far short of the company’s earlier prediction of a 2.5-million-subscriber rise. This was the first dip in subscriptions for the service in a decade.
Earlier this year, the streaming service raised subscription prices in the United States and Canada.