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SK Broadband, an internet service provider in South Korea and a subsidiary of South Korean telecommunications company SK Telecom, has filed a counterclaim against streaming service Netflix to demand payment for the bandwidth it has used for the past three years.

SK Broadband Files Counterclaim

The case comes after the South Korean court sided against Netflix in June. Now, the internet service provider has the power to file counterclaims against streaming platforms for using excessive amounts of bandwidth and causing traffic on its network.

According to a Netflix spokesperson who had an exclusive interview with TechCrunch, the streaming service will review the SK Broadband's claim.

In the meantime, the company will continue to seek communication with the internet service provider. It will work with them to ensure a seamless streaming experience for their South Korean customers.

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The United States-based streaming giant submitted an appeal to a higher court against the decision given in July after it lost the first case that they filed last year.

The case alleged that SK Broadband has no right to demand extra fees for bandwidth use as they should be responsible for managing their networks.

Netflix claimed that the internet service provider is trying to double the bill. The subscribers are already paying for the broadband used, and now SK Broadband wants to charge Netflix for it.

The internet service provider wants to charge the streaming giant $23 million per year for its network use.

In 2019, SK Broadband requested a settlement and reached out to the Korea Communication Commission but no avail.

SK Broadband claims that the traffic caused by Netflix on its network has increased 24 times, from 50GB per second in 2018, it became 1,200GB in 2021, according to Reuters.

Netflix' Contribution to South Korea's Movie Industry

On Sept. 28, the streaming giant stated that its investment in content production had brought $4.7 billion to South Korea's economy.

The worth covered everything from publishing the content to distributing them.

The streaming service also claims that it has helped create 16,000 jobs in the country since 2016, according to the figures given by the Deloitte Consulting report.

Netflix Korea has more than 3 million subscribers in South Korea as of last year, while globally, the streaming service has more than 200 million paid subscribers.

The Netflix spokesperson stated that the hit Korean series "Squid Game" is now slowly becoming Netflix's biggest show ever, and it is the first-ever Korean series to be on a No. 1 spot on Netflix US.

Another Korean Netflix show, "Kingdom," is becoming a fan favorite, with a video game set to launch based on the series.

Meanwhile, Disney Plus, another hit streaming service, is scheduled to launch in South Korea in November.

The streaming service plans to use third-party content delivery networks or CDNs instead of using the network of internet service providers to avoid paying extra for bandwidth usage fees.

Disney plus is also scheduled to launch in Hong Kong and Taiwan early next year. However, it is not clear what service it will use for its network, according to Variety. The streaming service plans to slowly expand to other Asian countries in the next few years.

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Written by Sophie Webster

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