In a major blow to its employees, Netflix has asked them to quit if they don’t like in-house content. If they are offended by the shows the company airs, they can leave the company.
In a memo sent to staff last week, Netflix said it expected its employees to work on shows they may disagree with. It said, “Depending on your role, you may need to work on titles you perceive to be harmful. If you’d find it hard to support our content breadth, Netflix may not be the best place for you.”
The company faced a backlash against stand-up comedian Dave Chapelle’s show The Closer. In October, the show debuted on the digital platform and was branded as transphobic and homophobic by several critics. In the show, Chappelle made transphobic comments, after which several employees within Netflix staged a walkout in protest of the show.
The Netflix Culture memo includes a section called “Artistic Expression.” It says employees should set aside their personal values when working on its titles.
“Not everyone will like — or agree with — everything on our service,” the Artistic Expression section states. “While every title is different, we approach them based on the same set of principles: we support the artistic expression of the creators we choose to work with; we program for a diversity of audiences and tastes; and we let viewers decide what’s appropriate for them, versus having Netflix censor specific artists or voices.”
Meanwhile, two new changes are coming to Netflix. First, the platform is developing ways to livestream upcoming reality shows and stand-up specials. Netflix could Livestream events like Selling Sunset’s and allow live voting for competitive shows if it supported live streams. Netflix might potentially stream live comedy specials.
Netflix’s upcoming live-streaming feature is in the early stages of development. Once implemented, the feature will allow Netflix to ask its viewers for live voting for competition series and talent hunt shows.