Netflix fires employee for leaking 'sensitive' material' as Dave Chapelle controversy swirls
Netflix's Sarandos defended the comedian's right to 'creative freedom'
Netflix has fired an employee for sharing sensitive material outside the company.
"We have let go of an employee for sharing confidential, commercially sensitive information outside the company," a Netflix spokesperson confirmed to FOX Business on Friday.
"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 spokesperson added.
The material was in regard to Dave Chappelle’s controversial new standup special "The Closer."
NETFLIX CEO DEFENDS DAVE CHAPPELLE SPECIAL: STAND-UP IS 'AN IMPORTANT PART OF OUR CONTENT OFFERING’
Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos has defended Chappelle’s right to "creative freedom" with the special, "even though this means there will always be content on Netflix some people believe is harmful."
In the special, Chappelle doubled down on jokes he made about transgender people, defending author J.K. Rowling for "effectively" saying "gender was a fact" and "the trans community got mad as (expletive)."
He also mentioned the biological aspects of gender, discounting what many critics and transgender activists have argued reduces the conversation to mere biology rather than the social constructs of gender.
NETFLIX EMPLOYEE WHO WAS SUSPENDED AFTER DAVE CHAPPELLE CRITICISM IS REINSTATED
"Every human being in this room, every human being on Earth had to pass through the legs of a woman to be on Earth, that is a fact," Chappelle said in the special. "Now I am not saying that to say that trans women aren’t women. I am just saying that those p-----s that they got … you know what I mean?" I’m not saying it’s not p----, but that’s like beyond p---- or impossible p----."
This week a number of trans employees announced a walkout in protest of Sarandos defending the special. The walkout is scheduled for Oct. 20.
"Chappelle is one of the most popular stand-up comedians today, and we have a long standing deal with him. His last special 'Sticks & Stones,' also controversial, is our most watched, stickiest and most award winning stand-up special to date," Sarandos wrote in an internal memo obtained by Variety.
NETFLIX SUSPENDS TRANS EMPLOYEE WHO CRITICIZED CHAPPELLE SPECIAL, CRASHED BUSINESS MEETING
One trans employee, Terra Field, and two other staffers were recently suspended for crashing a quarterly business meeting they were not invited to. Field, a senior software engineer, had also posted a Twitter thread critical of Chappelle’s special that went viral on Twitter.
The company said earlier this week that Field was not suspended for her Twitter thread, but for crashing the meeting. She has since been reinstated at the company and said on Twitter that Netflix found she had "no ill-intent" when joining the meeting.
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"Netflix has reinstated me after finding that there was no ill-intent in my attending the QBR meeting. I've included the statement I requested below. I'm going to take a few days off to decompress and try to figure out where I'm at. At the very least, I feel vindicated," Field tweeted Tuesday evening.
FOX Business' Brie Stimson and Emma Colton contributed to this report.