Netflix Executive Jonathan Friedland has been let go due to using racial slurs at work.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings sent out a memo explaining why the former chief communications officer was leaving the company. According to Hastings, Friedland had used racial slurs twice during work conversations.
As reported by nbcnews.com
Netflix chief communications officer Jonathan Friedland is leaving the company following a controversy over insensitive remarks.
In a memo to staffers Friday, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings described two incidents in which Friedland used a racial slur. He wrote of Friedland: “His descriptive use of the N-word on at least two occasions at work showed unacceptably low racial awareness and sensitivity, and is not in line with our values as a company.”
Friedland had announced his departure from the company earlier via Twitter.
Hastings went on to say:
"The first incident was several months ago in a PR meeting about sensitive words. Several people afterwards told him how inappropriate and hurtful his use of the N-word was, and Jonathan apologized to those that had been in the meeting. We hoped this was an awful anomaly never to be repeated.
"Three months later he spoke to a meeting of our Black Employees @ Netflix group and did not bring it up, which was understood by many in the meeting to mean he didn’t care and didn’t accept accountability for his words.
"The second incident, which I only heard about this week, was a few days after the first incident; this time Jonathan said the N-word again to two of our black employees in HR who were trying to help him deal with the original offense. The second incident confirmed a deep lack of understanding, and convinced me to let Jonathan go now."
Hastings added that he regretted in hindsight not having "done more to use it as a learning moment for everyone at Netflix" after the first incident.
This is completely inappropriate behavior, and it taking place in a professional environment in inexcusable. Of course Friedland was allowed to leave instead of being fired, and will most likely find work again. Strangely, the words were said in context of meetings about sensitive words. The executive was not using them in a derogatory manner, nor directing them towards anyone. Friedland did not use the words in a racially oriented way, and was still asked to leave over it.
Do you think he should have lost his job? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.