Netflix Just Laid Off Over 200 Employees After Major Loss

By Nathan Kamal | 1 month ago

netflix

The bad news for Netflix just keeps coming. After what seems like an escalating series of financial setbacks, the streaming platform is laying off over 200 workers in various positions around the company. According to CNBC, the increasingly-less dominant tech company is eliminating positions for approximately 150 positions, most of them based in the United States. A representative for Netflix was the decision was “driven by business needs” rather than individual workers’ history or work performance, which is not exactly a good sign for the company. In addition to those layoffs, The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Netflix is also eliminating 70 positions in its embattled animation unit. 

While unfortunate (especially for the workers who have lost their jobs due to no actions of their own), this is not at all unexpected. Netflix was thrown into chaos when it recently announced that it had lost 200,000 subscribers during the first financial quarter of 2022. The company’s stock value had already dipped shockingly low when it predicted that it would not gain as many additional new subscribers in Q1 as it had previously, so an actual loss was even more disastrous for shareholders. Netflix also has stated that it expects to lose as many as two million more subscribers in Q2. Given that shareholders have already begun legal action for a company not making as much money as they expected to, thus reneging on the promise of capitalism that their money would never be at risk, things do not look bright for Netflix. 

All that said, the jobs being currently eliminated represent about 2% of Netflix’s total workforce. The company also plans to spend approximately $17 billion developing new content in 2022, presumably based on the economic principle of “gotta spend money to make money,” so it is not like Netflix is completely collapsing. However, increasing competition from other platforms is very much threatening the company’s once-unquestioned dominance over streaming services as the content arms race heats up. While some might hypothesize that Netflix’s loss has been due to some perception of progressive politics in their content, it is more likely due to Disney, Warner Bros, and Paramount simultaneously throwing their combined might into the streaming market. 

We would also speculate that Netflix might be finally suffering from the effects of its notoriously brutal cancelation policies, which have led to innumerable fan-favorite series being axed at the one or two-season mark. While this may make short-term financial sense to executives and algorithms, it also potentially could turn off fans to new content that is all but certain to be canceled before a fanbase can develop. 

On the other hand, Netflix has largely blamed the Q1 loss of subscribers on the recent streaming blockade of Russia due to their invasion of the nation of Ukraine. The company also plans to work to shore up its loss of subscribers by (checks notes) cracking down on people sharing their passwords, rather than doing much to try to engage new viewers. There has been some discussion of a lower-tier, discounted form of Netflix that might be offered, but it seems like Netflix’s plan to improve its diminishing influence is to make their viewers like them even less. Good plan, Netflix.