Under the 1988 Video Privacy Protection Act or VPPA, folks in the U.S. are required to make a written consent in order for them to share information regarding their digital viewing habits. It was created to prevent the “wrongful disclosure of video tape rental or sale records, or similar audio visual materials, to cover items such as video games and the future DVD format.” Now, a new Netflix-backed bill, H.R. 6671, seeks to amend the VPPA by allowing “frictionless sharing” of a users’s viewing history via Facebook or any other online service.
The so-called Netflix bill is an attempt to make it easier for consumers to share information regarding their digital viewing habits online. The Senate has recently approved the bill, hereby bringing the bill one step closer to becoming a law. If President Obama approves the new bill, this will give users the ability to post the movies and TV shows that they are watching in social networks. “We are pleased the Senate has moved quickly to modernize the VPPA, giving consumers more freedom to share with friends when they want,” Netflix spokesman Joris Evers said in a statement. “After the president signs the bill, we will introduce social features for our U.S. members in 2013.”