Netflix Adopts Efficient HTTPS Encryption For Its Video Streams

Netflix Adopts Efficient HTTPS Encryption For Its Video Streams:

Netflix has been reluctant to adopt HTTPS for its video streams so far because delivering video is already a bandwidth-heavy task, and adding encryption on top of that risked adding too much overhead. To solve this problem, the company searched for the ideal cipher and its fastest implementation.

Encrypting everything matters because third-parties can use our unique ‘tells’, be they video watching, online reading, music listening, website browsing, or other human behaviours to track us across the Internet. Some of these trackers are other companies, some of them are governments, and some are just questionable groups of hackers.

Netflix’s adoption of HTTPS for their entire service line is a good thing but, now, it’ll be important to actually test the implementations of HTTPS. Unfortunately, most implementations suffer some kind of deficiency and it’s more likely than not that Netflix’s initial deployment will be similarly flawed.


Sometimes, I Like To Wait


Anthony Ha for TechCrunch:

Yet when I watched House of Cards, I really enjoyed the space between the episodes, when I could wonder about what happens next and anticipate the next time I’d have an hour or two to catch up. That’s not a new idea — in fact, it’s one of the main pleasures of television. But I think it’s something people lose sight of when they talk about bold new distribution models.

I agree, this topic is being lost in the larger debate. I believe I prefer the House of Cards model for the same reason I’ve long preferred watching shows on DVD rather than when they air — I like to binge.

But I do miss some of the “watercooler” effect of everyone talking about what just happened on Lost this week — something which the very existence of Twitter has essentially perfected. There’s still definitely a watercooler effect with House of Cards but it’s more about the show in general rather than specific plot points since we’re all likely at different parts of the show right now (unless we’re doing with season 1 already, of course).

I think that the sense of community can be lost in the binging, insofar as it’s (often) a solitary event. But, at the same time, I think this (to an extent) may speak to how some people are increasingly moving to more private viewing (i.e. in a room alone) that is simultaneously more social (i.e. ability to share/comment/etc on social media).