Reddit users, who are presumed to be based outside of the USA, complained that the service was giving them ads for other Netflix programs with no option to skip.
It was first spotted by Cord Cutter News and reported by TechCrunch, highlighting that Netflix is promoting its own and other shows in between episodes. According to the user, they had finished an episode of Rick and Morty on Netflix and, instead of airing the next episode, the service played a trailer for Better Call Saul. As yet there's no indication as to if or when the ads will roll out to everyone, or how many people are in the trial (though it seems to be live in several countries).
"[We] are testing whether surfacing recommendations between episodes helps members discover stories they will enjoy faster", read the statement in part. The reasoning, Netflix's statement says, comes from its last controversial decision: to add auto-playing videos, complete with unmuteable audio, while browsing through Netflix content. Netflix did not confirm to Ars whether this new advertising initiative would be limited to specific platforms (smart TVs, game consoles, etc.) or territories, nor how long this "testing" period might last. Netflix, on the other hand, has always been without any sort of ads, allowing users to enjoy movies and TV uninterrupted.
Tech website Ars Technica reports that initial sightings of the ads began to crop up on the Netflix Reddit community during the week and that users in America and the United Kingdom seemed to have been included in the test.
Other Reddit users quickly replied to the post and said a similar thing happened to them.
'At Netflix, we conduct hundreds of tests every year so we can better understand what helps members more easily find something great to watch, ' the service said. They can be skipped.
At present, it's reported that Netflix has no plans to roll out this feature to all of its subscribers and that this test is now live for only a small percentage of their global audience.