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The Purpose of Geo-Blocking in Streaming Services

 Using streaming services has obvious perks. You can get on-demand content whenever you want. Enjoy favorite series and original movies on any device, download shows to watch offline, and get an entirely ad-free experience. It’s no wonder that subscriptions in the past few years have increased across all the major streaming platforms. 

Geo-Blocking in Streaming Services

However, there’s a catch. Even with a premium membership, you won’t always have access to all the content that a streaming service provides. Many of the most popular shows and movies will come with a geo-restriction. 

Take a look below to learn what geo-blocking means for streaming services and find out how you can get around it with the help of a US proxy to enjoy your favorite content without obstacles. 

What exactly is geo-blocking? 

As the name would suggest, geo-blocking is the practice of restricting access to content based on the user’s geographical location. It’s most commonly seen on sites such as YouTube, where you’ll get a “this video is not available in your country” notification. 

Many banks and financial institutions will also geo-block their content if their user bases are within specific regions. After all, there’s no reason to allow European users to access content when all of the bank’s clients are in the US, for example. 

Of course, the practice of geo-blocking is nowhere near as prevalent as on streaming service platforms. 

The content you can access as a Netflix user in the US isn’t the same as the one you can access as a user in Spain. Things are similar with other popular streaming services, including Amazon Prime, HBO, Disney+, ESPN, Hulu, and others. 

While you might not notice this trend as a regular user who stays home to enjoy some of their most beloved movies and series, it becomes quite a nuisance when traveling. Even if you’re a registered user from the US, for instance, you could encounter unexpected geo-blocks as soon as you cross the border. 

It doesn’t matter where you’re originally from – when you access your streaming platform of choice from a different country, you’ll have unique content options. 

How does it work? 

Although the process of geo-blocking might seem complicated to the noninitiated, the technology behind it is pretty simple. Streaming platforms use your Internet Protocol (IP) information to discern where your traffic is coming from and what kind of content to present. 

When you use your device to connect to a streaming service, the platform reads your device’s IP address, OS information, screen resolution, etc. Some information is necessary for optimizing site performance, and other is useful for marketing purposes. 

But your IP address is essential for giving you access to the type of content available in your region. Your IP is provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and indicates your general location. Whenever you connect to a different network in another area, your IP changes. Therefore, if you can hide or change your IP, you could unlock access to geo-restricted content. 

Why do streaming services geo-block their content? 

While geo-blocks are often just an unfair nuisance, they serve a purpose. Streaming services will impose geo-restrictions on their content because of: 

●Distribution rights – to offer content in a specific region, streaming services need to hold the distribution rights for the said region. Obtaining the rights can be a costly process, so some streaming services will avoid it when it’s not necessary; 

● Copyright laws – when using copyrighted content, streaming platforms need permission from the copyright owner to distribute them to different regions. If the copyright owner doesn’t give permission, the platform cannot distribute the content; 

●Market segmentation – geo-blocking allows for easier market segmentation. In different regions, streaming platforms might offer different pricing, different types of preferred content, and different language options; 

●Censorship laws – it’s not always up to the streaming platform to decide whether a piece of content should be geo-blocked. Sometimes, it’s up to the national government. If the government of a country wants to censor some types of content (such as series that promote gambling, for instance), streaming platforms need to restrict access to such content to the users within that country. 

Although it can be annoying, many of the reasons for geo-blocking are valid. Fortunately, there are ways you can bypass such restrictions. 

Can you bypass geo-blocks on streaming services? 

As mentioned, if you could hide or change your IP address, you can bypass geo-blocks on streaming platforms. The simplest way to do so is with the use of proxies

Proxies act as a intermediaries between the internet and your device. When you use a proxy, it routes your traffic through its servers (located across the globe) before connecting you with a site or platform you’re trying to visit. In the process, it provides you with a new fake IP address and allows you to access sites even if they have geo-restrictions. 

Therefore, if you’re located in Japan, for example, and want to watch US Netflix, all you need is a reliable US proxy to access the content you want to watch. Go to

Final thoughts 

While many streaming platforms have legitimate reasons for geo-blocking their content, it quickly becomes an annoying practice for the end users. Fortunately, with the help of a US proxy (or a proxy with servers in any other location, for that matter), you can easily bypass restrictions and enjoy your favorite movies and series without problems. 

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