Netflix will spend $100 million to improve diversity on film following equity study
Netflix launched a first-of-its-kind diversity study Friday to analyze the make-up of Netflix’s on-screen expertise, in addition to the behind-the-camera creators, producers, writers and administrators.
The report reveals that the corporate has made progress, however nonetheless has extra work to do to shut diversity gaps. The firm says it is committing to an “inclusion lens” to its work, which co-CEO Ted Sarandos says means asking questions like, “Whose voice is lacking? Is this portrayal genuine? Who is excluded?”
The firm additionally introduced the creation of the Netflix Fund for Creative Equity, which will make investments $100 million over the following 5 years in organizations that assist underrepresented communities practice and discover jobs in TV and film. Netflix additionally dedicated to releasing an replace on this study each two years by way of 2026.
“I believe it is essential that the content material displays the individuals which can be watching it,” Sarandos instructed CNBC’s “Squawk Alley” in an interview Friday. “I believe the best way individuals can join with content material, with an ideal film or an ideal collection, is that they see one thing of themselves in that, both that it is very relatable, that it would seem like them, or it displays a life expertise that they’ve additionally skilled.”
The study was carried out, at Netflix’s request, by Stacy Smith, who has a PhD in communications and human improvement and is the founder and director of the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative. The USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative produces common stories on diversity in film and tv. Smith’s workforce examined all the movies and collection Netflix commissioned between 2018 and 2019. Of the 22 inclusion indicators (reminiscent of racial identities, LGBTQ+ and disabilities), 19 confirmed enchancment over the two-year interval.
Netflix’s strengths in diversity are round girls. The study discovered gender equality in main roles throughout movies and TV collection. Smith additionally discovered that Netflix is outpacing the business in hiring girls and other people of coloration as administrators. Netflix was additionally discovered to exceed proportional illustration of Black leads and important solid.
But the report additionally discovered that different racial and ethnic teams had been underrepresented relative to the U.S. inhabitants. LatinX characters had been simply 4% of leads, regardless of being 12% of the inhabitants, and simply 3% of creators and producers had been LatinX.
The study additionally discovered that LGBTQ+ characters had been uncommon: simply 4% of leads in film and 1% in TV collection. And whereas the study says that 27% of the U.S. inhabitants identifies as having a incapacity, fewer than 1% of collection leads, and simply 5% of collection important solid had been characters with disabilities.
“Dr. Smith’s years of analysis — together with this new study — verify that inclusion behind the
digital camera exponentially will increase inclusion in entrance of the digital camera, and that each rely on making certain that the Netflix executives commissioning these tales are additionally various,” Sarandos wrote in a weblog put up concerning the report. “Doing higher means establishing much more alternatives for individuals from underrepresented communities to have their voices heard, and purposefully closing capability and ability gaps with coaching packages the place they’re wanted.”
Friday’s information and the corporate’s fund is the newest in a collection of commitments to diversity.
In January, the corporate launched its first Inclusion Report about Netflix’s worker ranks. And in June, Netflix made a $100 million dedication to assist Black communities by placing 2% of its money holdings into Black monetary establishments serving low- and moderate-income communities.
Netflix founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings has additionally made a private dedication to diversity. In June, Hastings and his spouse donated $120 million to traditionally Black faculties and universities.