Netflix has fired an employee that was planning a mass walkout, escalating internal tensions at the streamer.
The trans employee research group (ERG) last week announced plans to stage a walkout after a senior software engineer – who had criticised the anti-trans rhetoric in Dave Chapelle’s latest comedy special The Closer – was temporarily suspended after she and two other employees tried to attend a director-level meeting.
While those employees are now reinstated, the unnamed employee was fired on suspicion of leaking metrics on The Closer. These figures, which were reported on by Bloomberg, revealed viewership figures and Chapelle’s salary for the show.
In a statement, a Netflix spokesperson confirmed: “We have let go of an employee for sharing confidential, commercially sensitive information outside the company. We understand this employee may have been motivated by disappointment and hurt with Netflix, but maintaining a culture of trust and transparency is core to our company.”
The firing came shortly after co-CEO Ted Sarrandos wrote a memo to employees in which he argued that “content on screen doesn’t directly translate to real-world harm.”
In The Closer, Chapelle spends more than 30 minutes telling jokes at the expense of the trans community, including a joke where he compared trans identity to blackface.
Trans employees and their allies at Netflix are still planning on staging a walkout on October 20.