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Netflix Gives Users Added Control Over Facebook Sharing

Experimenting With Ways to Bolster Users' Privacy

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Netflix, the world's largest subscription streaming service, is adding a privacy feature that lets customers control which shows they share with their Facebook friends.

Netflix users will be prompted to recommend programs they've watched to one or more friends by linking their account to their page on Facebook, the world's biggest social network, according to a blog post today. Their most frequent Facebook contacts will appear at the top of the list on their Netflix page.

Previously, Netflix subscribers who linked to Facebook would share every TV show or movie to all their friends who were customers of both services.

The change gives users of Los Gatos, Calif.-based Netflix's service flexibility, letting them share some of their favorite shows with Facebook friends on Netflix, while keeping other viewing choices to themselves.

"Starting today, we're launching our new social recommendation feature that allows you to easily, and privately, recommend the shows you love to the people you care about," said Cameron Johnson, Netflix's director of production innovation.

Privacy move
The company, which is experimenting with ways to bolster users' privacy, is also testing a viewing feature that lets customers hide a program from their history and recommendations.

Integration with social media is intended by Netflix to make a solitary activity, watching movies and TV at home, into more of a group event. Friends can see each other's choices and easily share recommendations.

Netflix first linked its service with Facebook overseas in 2011, and later in the U.S., its largest market, in March 2013.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings is on the board of Facebook.

~ Bloomberg News ~

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