Recently, Mango TV announced an increase in membership prices. Before that, long video platforms such as Youku, Tencent, and iQiyi have also completed price increases.
In the face of rising membership fees, many users are discouraged.
It has gradually become the consensus of some long-video users not to buy members, and to "take" members.
Some people are guarding at zero every day just to exchange a limited weekly membership card, and some people buy a "shared member" from regular members at a low price through second-hand transactions.
These "wool" practices have reduced the economic cost of watching dramas and movies for users, but is it really sustainable for users and the industry?
Is it legal to lend and resell member accounts?
Some experts said that the long video industry needs to rely on payment to achieve sustainable development.
"Only when users spend money and the platform makes money, can the platform provide users with better content, and users are more willing to pay for the platform. Such a positive cycle is the future development path of the industry."
Long video platform price increase
Users "abandoned to buy" but not "abandoned to watch"
"Mango TV members have raised prices again! Can a cup of milk tea still afford a video membership?" On July 26, Mango TV announced that it would increase the membership price from August 9. This is the second time that Mango TV has raised prices this year. .
In January of this year, Mango TV members just raised the monthly monthly subscription by 1 yuan to 19 yuan per month, and this time it will continue to increase by 3 yuan to 22 yuan per month. There are also different paid items for continuous seasonal subscription, continuous annual subscription and full-screen membership. raised.
Just two months ago, Youku announced a price increase after 5 years.
A reporter from Beijing Youth Daily noticed that since 2020, Tencent Video and iQiyi have raised their membership prices twice, and Migu Video also completed the price adjustment earlier this year.
So far, in terms of the price of continuous monthly membership, iQiyi is 22 yuan/month, Mango TV will be tied after the increase, Youku and Tencent Video are both 25 yuan/month.
For drama fans, because film and television resources are scattered on multiple platforms, if you want to catch up with all the popular dramas, you have to buy members of several platforms.
Some netizens calculated that the monthly membership fee of "Aiyouteng" plus Mango TV will reach 96 yuan. If you buy it on an annual card, it will cost nearly a thousand yuan every year.
Many users said that "the wallet is a bit unbearable".
On the other hand, the first reaction of many netizens to the price increase of the platform is: "Do you deserve it?" The quality of the
's content has become another reason why users are discouraged from membership fees.
Some netizens reflected: "I just want to watch a hit drama, and the platform has no other content worth watching. It's a bit of a waste to charge members of a platform for a drama." Some netizens even said, "The content provided by the platform Calculate, nine yuan and nine can’t be more.” Whether the quality of the platform’s content is compatible with the rising price is a major criterion for users to view the platform’s price increase.
"Putting" wool into users' "consensus"
The three most sought after methods
It seems that it has become the consensus of many video platform users not to buy members, and to "take" members.
After sorting out various methods, a reporter from the Beiqing Daily found that some people aimed at various welfare activities on the platform, guarding at zero every day only to exchange points for a limited weekly membership card; some people bought from regular members through second-hand transactions. Buy a "shared member" at a low price.
In order to "get" a free member, this year's drama chasers worked very hard.
The first method is to take advantage of official membership benefits and ask for membership experience cards and film gift opportunities.
In Douban groups such as "Buy Group" and "Fight Group" gathered by the "Wool Party", netizens have built major video membership experience cards to send each other "special buildings".
Every day, more than 10 netizens "squat" here for a membership experience card, and there are more than 10 sharing links for the experience card.
In fact, many video members don't know that one of their rights as members is to let others become "experience members".
Taking Mango TV as an example, members of V2 level and above can get 1 exclusive red envelope every month. The exclusive red envelope contains 6 to 15 experience members to receive opportunities and can be shared with friends. Friends will receive mango after receiving them. TV experience members have a random length of time, usually 1 to 5 days, according to the rules, up to 50 days.
In addition to Mango TV, "Aiyou Teng" also has a similar "experience member" benefit mechanism.
But becoming an "experience member" does not mean enjoying all the rights and interests of a full member.
Experience members of Mango TV can only enjoy ad-free, Blu-ray quality privileges, but cannot watch content exclusive to full members and paid on-demand content.
In addition, members also have "gifting rights", and can select videos from the list of videos specified by the platform to give to friends, and the friends who are gifted can watch the videos exclusive to platform members for free.
The second method is to accumulate points to become members and make full use of the points of each platform.
Long video platforms usually have a point system, and video membership cards are common products in video platform point stores.
On Mango TV, 200 points can be exchanged for 1-day membership, and 7-day membership requires 1400 points.
Redeemed membership benefits include ad-free, Blu-ray quality, and access to exclusive member-only content.
Points can be earned by doing tasks: play "Mango Farm" to water once to get 50 points, watch a designated video for 10 minutes to get 10 points, invite friends to watch videos together to get 20 points, share videos to get 5 points, etc. .
However, the membership cards of the Points Mall are usually limited daily. Mango TV 1-day membership cards are limited to 3,000 points per day, while stocks last; 3-day members are limited to 500 copies; 7-day members are limited to 300 copies.
The Beiqing Daily reporter noticed that many netizens complained in the comments that it was "difficult to grab" and "the quantity is too small".
Points from some banks, telecommunications, aviation and other platforms can also be exchanged for video memberships.
For example, 780 mobile points can be redeemed for the iQIYI Gold Weekly Membership Card, while the monthly card requires 2,140 points.
ICBC, China Merchants Bank points, China Southern Airlines, Air China, Sichuan Airlines and other airline mileage can be exchanged for membership cards.
In addition, consumption such as recharge of phone bills, purchase of takeaway monthly cards, etc. can also "acquire members" according to the number of days.
On iQIYI, you can spend 99.99 yuan to charge 100 yuan of phone bills to save a 1-day membership; in terms of life, you can save about 1 day by buying an Ele.me super membership monthly card, a Meituan takeaway 5 yuan voucher, and a green orange bicycle weekly card. members.
The third method is to form a trading platform with member-easy members, Moments, and Douban.
In the matter of buying video memberships, it is not only the membership fee increase that persuades the Wool Party, but also the fact that the film and television resources they want to watch are scattered on multiple platforms.
Even if you already have multiple platform members, you may still need to open a platform member for a drama.
According to the current continuous monthly membership price of each platform, the monthly membership fee of "Aiyouteng" plus Mango TV will reach 96 yuan.
By exchanging members of one platform for members of another platform, you can get free members without wasting existing resources.
Moments and Douban groups have become platforms for second-hand transactions for "Wool Party".
Users with members can also sell idle members to users who need them at a low price, or bid to let users who need them share a member account with themselves.
According to the reference price of Douban’s “Fa Group”, the monthly card price of Tencent Video and iQiyi is 8 yuan, and the two people share no more than 4 yuan; the monthly card price of Mango TV and Youku is 5 yuan, and the two people share no more than 3 yuan. , well below the official price.
Personal information may be leaked
"Pulling wool" hidden risks
"Standing for the weekly membership card at 00:00 every day is within the scope of the platform's rules, and the platform is also willing to let users pick up the wool." Pan Helin, co-director and researcher of the Digital Economy and Financial Innovation Research Center of Zhejiang University International Business School, told Beiqing Daily reporter , Internet platforms either take up users' money or take up users' time. Users who use the platform's welfare mechanism to gain wool only use their time to exchange members, which is understandable.
However, for users, although account sharing is unlikely to be held accountable, it requires certain risks.
Pan Helin told the Beiqing Daily reporter, "The sharing of accounts between strangers has risks for both parties. For account owners, personal information may be leaked due to account sharing." If users want to lend their accounts, they must provide Personal information such as your mobile phone number and WeChat ID.
In addition, according to the membership service agreement of each video platform, if a member user lends out an account, the behavior under the account will be regarded as the behavior of the member user, and the user shall be responsible for the activities that occur under his VIP account or through the account. ".
"For the user of the account, the authority may be withdrawn by the account owner at any time." Pan Helin said.
Many users who have shared accounts with others have had the experience of being disconnected suddenly while watching a drama.
However, if a user buys a membership account from a stranger, since there is almost no guarantee for the transaction, if the account is withdrawn after payment, it is difficult to defend their rights.
Member "sharing" has been restricted
The same account can log in to 2 devices
How does the platform view the behavior of users "scraping" members?
In fact, whether it is through the membership experience card or the platform points to "purchase" members, although the platform does not directly make profits, these benefits themselves are the mechanism set up by the platform to attract traffic and enhance user stickiness.
However, the private second-hand transactions of users are of different nature. An industry insider told the Beiqing Daily reporter that the phenomenon of sharing members is indeed a problem.
It can be found in the "Membership Service Agreement" of each video platform that each platform makes it clear that users shall not obtain membership services by borrowing, renting, selling, sharing or transferring membership services.
At the same time, many users have also discovered that video platforms are limiting the number of devices and terminals that can be used by different types of members, which also restricts users' sharing behaviors such as account lending and resale.
Taking iQIYI as an example, the same VIP member account can log in to 5 terminals at most, and the mobile app can only log in to 2 at most.
If the user is a Gold VIP member or Platinum VIP member, the same account can play on up to 2 devices at the same time at the same time.
This trend appears to be further refined.
Recently, some Youku member users found that they can only try to watch the VIP member content on the big screen for 6 minutes. If you want to watch the whole movie, you need to upgrade from Youku VIP to Kumiao VIP.
"Youku VIP Membership Service Agreement" also shows that "Youku VIP membership service can be used on mobile phones, tablet computers, and computers, but not on TV."
At present, on Taobao, Xianyu and other trading platforms, it is still easy to search for a large number of video membership sales information.
These sellers all claim to be "high-definition", "can be mirrored", "automatically sent in seconds", and even "one member can watch the whole network" "one purchase, free for life".
The Beiqing Daily reporter also noticed that the membership service agreements of each video platform stipulate that membership services cannot be obtained through any automatic programs, scripts, software, etc., such as robot software, spider software, and crawler software.
It is understood that these methods are the usual methods of black and gray production.
This group of articles / our reporter Song Xia
Intern Gu Xiaoxiao Coordinator / Yu Meiying