Netflix ends free trials in the US after years of giving away first month

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Try it free? Not anymore, apparently.


Angela Lang/CNET

Netflix has ended free trials for new customers in the US, after years of giving away the first month of its service free. The streaming service’s US sign-up page said trials are no longer available, with Netflix instead touting how it lets you cancel anytime at no cost. Newer rivals tend to offer shorter free-trial periods, though some of Netflix’s biggest, longstanding competitors still offer an introductory month free. 

“We’re looking at different marketing promotions in the United States to attract new members and give them a great Netflix experience,” a Netflix spokeswoman said Tuesday. The end of free trials in the US was reported earlier Tuesday by TV Answer Man. 

Netflix, the world’s biggest subscription video service with more than 192 million paying members, was increasingly an outlier among its rivals by offering a month-long free trial. As a raft of new rival services have launched in the last year, many set their free trial periods at a single week, including HBO Max and NBCUniversal’s Peacock. And Disney Plus, as strong growth lifted its number of subscribers above its initial projections way earlier than expected, stopped offering free trials altogether in June. 

Other established apps like CBS All Access and Starzlimit their free trials to seven days too. Hulu Showtime and Amazon Prime, however, still offer a month free to new subscribers. (Note: CBS All Access and Showtime are owned by ViacomCBS, the parent company of CNET.)

Even Netflix itself had already begun phasing out free trials elsewhere in the world, starting in Mexico two years ago. Netflix free trials are still available in some select markets. 

IPhone 12 Prices in Line With Recent Years

So what will these latest iPhones cost you?

Many of us can breathe a sigh of relief. Apple stuck with a proven pricing model for the new devices, releasing the entry-level phones for $700 and up and higher-end phones starting at $1,000 — both prices in line with previous years.

What is different this year is that Apple will sell four iPhone models, up from its typical three in recent years.

At the entry level, the iPhone 12 Mini will start at $700 and iPhone 12 at $800. Last year, the iPhone 11 started at $700, meaning the flagship iPhone 12 device will start at $100 more. People will still have a $700 option, but it will be smaller.

On the higher end, the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max will start at $1,000 and $1,100, identical to last year.

Apple might have been able to hold prices mostly steady this year by no longer including headphones and a power adapter. The company said it was an environmental decision but it also likely saved it money and will cause many customers to buy extra accessories from Apple.

Analysts and investors have long anticipated the new iPhones as a boost to flagging sales of the company’s main product. A larger than normal share of existing iPhone owners are due for an upgrade, and many have held out for a 5G iPhone, not wanting to invest in a device that didn’t work with the faster wireless speeds.

Whether Apple was able to capitalize on the swelling demand for a 5G iPhone was something of a question this year when the coronavirus disrupted its supply chain in China. But its Chinese manufacturing partners quickly rebounded and the iPhone event was delayed by only about a month past its usual September date.

The End of the Internet? Net Neutrality Three Years On

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Posted: Oct 13, 2020 10:00 AM

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

Back in 2017, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its Restoring Internet Freedom Order (RIFO) which provided “a framework for protecting an open internet while paving the way for better, faster, and cheaper internet access for all consumers.” Shortly after the proposals were approved, CNN famously proclaimed the decision was the “end of the internet as we know it.” John Oliver’s segment on Last Week Tonight covering RIFO led 150,000 Americans to file comments opposing the new rules.

The previous rules, which were imposed just two years before, required internet services to be treated in the same regulatory manner as a 1930s-style public utilities (referred to as Title II regulations) and required Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to “treat all internet traffic the same.” Classifying ISPs under Title II regulations also allowed the federal government to “supervise their rates and practices, force them to provide service and ban practices that it decides are unjust or unreasonable.” The new rules reclassified internet services as an information services, as opposed to common carriers, while adding numerous consumer protections. 

Despite CNN’s apocalyptic claims and the substantial grassroots campaign satire comedians unleashed, three years after the proposals were released the internet is not only still functioning, but it is more accessible than ever. 

Given the current coronavirus pandemic, access to fast and reliable internet has never been more important. The positive outcomes for consumers stemming from RIFO illustrates why the FCC should continue in its desire to replace “heavy-handed regulations” with “common-sense rules that will promote investment and broadband deployment.”

A recent study by the Pew Research Center highlights the significant improvement in access to broadband internet after RIFO. In

Facebook bans Holocaust-denial content after allowing it for years

  • Facebook announced Monday it was changing its hate speech policy to “prohibit any content that denies or distorts the Holocaust.”
  • The company has faced criticism for more than a decade over its refusal to moderate anti-Semitic content that distorts or denies the Holocaust, when Nazis and their allies systematically killed 6 million Jews, happened.
  • In the weeks leading up to the 2020 presidential election, Facebook has attempted to mitigate criticism that it fails to prevent the spread of dangerous conspiracy theories and disinformation on its platform. Just last week, Facebook said it banned QAnon accounts across its platforms.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Facebook has banned Holocaust-denial content from the platform after years of criticism over its refusal to take action against such anti-Semitic rhetoric.

Facebook announced Monday it was updating its hate speech policy to “prohibit any content that denies or distorts the Holocaust.”

The policy change marks an abrupt about-face on Facebook’s refusal, for more than a decade, to remove content from its platform that denies the existence of the Holocaust and the genocide of millions of Jews and other minority groups. The platform has faced pressure from human rights and civil rights groups to take a stricter stance against such content, but Facebook has maintained that the “mere statement” of Holocaust denial doesn’t violate policies.

“I’m Jewish, and there’s a set of people who deny that the Holocaust happened. I find that deeply offensive,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg told Recode in July 2018. “But at the end of the day, I don’t believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong.”

In the meantime, it appears that Holocaust-denial content on Facebook has continued to not just exist, but flourish. A recent study, published in August by

It’s been 24 years since Internet companies were declared off-the-hook for the behavior of their users. That may change, and soon.

(Cross posted from Signal360)

In a sweeping talk at the Association of National Advertisers conference last month, P&G Chief Brand Officer (and ANA Chair) Marc Pritchard laid out a five-step plan to address systemic problems in the marketing and media industries. Each step addresses serious challenges and opportunities — in diversity, inequality, and creative and business practices. But perhaps no step is more challenging — and crucial — than Pritchard’s Step Four: Eliminating all harmful content online. 

“There is still too much harmful, hateful, denigrating, and discriminatory content and commentary in too many digital sites, channels, and feeds,” Pritchard said. “There is no place for this type of content.”

While nearly everyone agrees with the idea of eliminating harmful content, key actors across the digital media industry seem paralyzed when it comes to how best to take action on the problem. What’s really going on? To understand, we must dive into the early formation of the Internet industry in the United States, and the role the First Amendment plays — to this day — in shaping an increasingly contentious debate on how to regulate digital speech. 

But, First, a Bit of History

When the Internet was in its early stages as a commercial medium more than 25 years ago, a moral panic erupted in the United States following the publication of a Time magazine cover story Titled “Cyberporn” and featuring a terrified child staring aghast into the blue light of a computer monitor, the story claimed — falsely, as it turned out — that the majority of images on the then-novel medium consisted of pornography. 

Internet service providers were to be treated like the phone company … not held responsible for the speech of their customers.

Congress quickly took up the cause of cleaning up the Internet and passed the