Almost all media available on Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services is for personal and non-commercial use only. Netflix’s terms of service, for example, states that if a personal account (we are not aware of any that are not personal) is used to access any material shown in a public setting (including a classroom) it is in breach of the agreement and can lead to subscription cancellation and potentially penalties if any laws are broken.
Fair use, which normally permits copyright-protected materials to be viewed for limited educational purposes, does not apply here since the violation is the terms of service and not of any copyright law. That said, it also does not apply here because film screenings or video streaming hosted by a club do not fall under fair use for education purposes.
Netflix’s lone exception is for pre-approved “one-time only educational screenings” of documentaries. Details on what films are eligible to be viewed and when that can be done can be found on Netflix Help Center.
If student groups or faculty are interested in screening or streaming a film, please contact a vendor like Swank.com to purchase film rights to screen or stream a film.
You can also conduct a search on the University Libraries OneSearch database by searching "public performance rights" and limit to "video recording" to see the DVDs with public performance rights that have been purchased by the Libraries.
Still have questions about whether or not you need to purchase licensing rights? Please review Swank’s page on copyright law.