Netflix talks a big game when it comes to inclusivity, but it seems that when given a choice between that and making money, it will pick the latter. The current controversy centers on Dave Chappelle’s latest comedy special The Closer, which contains explicitly transphobic comments, with the company now facing a revolt by its staff over their continued promotion of it.
The corporate response to this has been pitiful, with Netflix Co-CEO Ted Sarandos releasing a bizarre email (via Variety) saying that he doesn’t believe Chappelle’s comments are harmful as “violence on screens has grown hugely over the last thirty years, especially with first-party shooter [sic] games, and yet violent crime has fallen significantly in many countries”.
Netflix staff are planning a virtual walkout on October 20th and the mood within the company sounds mutinous – particularly as a trans employee who spoke out against it was suspended. Now, the official Twitter account for Netflix’s LGBTQ+ content has posted a series of tweets expressing their disappointment and sadness:
It sounds like an awful lot of Netflix staff are soon going to have to put their money where their mouth is and decide if this company is really where they want to work. In addition, there’s a popular movement on social media pushing subscribers to leave the company, with #CancelNetflix trending as people post screenshots of their membership termination.
I’m 100% with the protesters on this. Netflix actively pushing transphobia is very sad to see and while it might be a short-term financial gain, it’s going to come back to bite them in the ass in the future.
I’m sure this story has a few more twists to come, so watch this space.