Netflix’s definition of the phrase “Netflix and chill” is tamer than the Internet’s.
In the Internet’s eyes, the phrase is an invitation to invite someone over to hook up with while Netflix plays in the background.
To the streaming service, it’s a somewhat more G-rated phenomenon: At Maker Faire this past weekend, Netflix debuted a prototype button called “The Switch” that does everything but initiate the hook up. Rather, the Internet-connected device dims the lights, switches on the phone’s Do Not Disturb function and powers up Netflix on a smart TV.
Even though the actual button is not for sale, Netflix published a set of instructions on how to build a button that connects to Wi-Fi. Besides patience and a high IQ, builders will need a special set of lights if they want to activate the dimming feature. It can also be hacked into ordering food through a phone’s app, so all that it’s missing is a Tinder or Grindr integration.
Netflix has been slow to acknowledge the meme since it grew in popularity over the summer, reportedly sparked by a joke circulating around Black Twitter. The meme then spread to other platforms, including Instagram, Tumblr and Reddit reaching its peak last month.
Digiday has repeatedly reached out to Netflix for their response, but has not yet heard back. Prior to this, Netflix acknowledged the meme on Instagram two weeks ago posting a picture of two beer koozies embossed with the phrase and captioned with a knowing face emoji:
#netflixandchill A photo posted by Netflix US (@netflix) on
The post was one of Netflix’s most popular posts with 19,000 likes, so it’s about time Netflix capitalizes on the phrase with swag before Urban Outfitters does.
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