The transgender Netflix program manger who allegedly leaked Dave Chappelle’s multimillion-dollar salary claimed they didn’t share it. However, the streaming giant was criticized for its insensitivity to trans people and its handling the controversial comedy special.
Netflix had confirmed that it fired an employee – who identified themselves as B. Pagels-Minor in a Thursday Op-Ed for the Washington Post – for leaking that it paid Dave Chappelle $24.1 million for his Netflix special ‘The Closer,’ which contains transphobic material.
Pagels-Minor stated that although they weren’t behind the leak, they did confirm they were pushing for change’ at the company following sharing ‘Black Trans Lives Matter’ content with executives.
“I shared my story with Netflix executives last year as part of a conversation to facilitate more trans-content on the platform. I wasn’t the only one. Pagels-Minor, who was transgender in 2014 after meeting her now-wife, wrote that Trans colleagues were professional and shared their stories.
The Netflix program manager, identified as B. Pagels–Minor (pictured), strongly denied leaking Dave Chappelle’s $24.1m salary to his special ‘The Closer.
Dave Chappelle continues facing backlash over controversial Netflix specials that critics claim were transphobic.
“We asked to be treated as equals. We asked them for recognition of our stories so that they would see that we were worthy to be on the platform. We felt vulnerable, but they at least heard us.
Pagels Minor said that the company didn’t consult with the Trans Employee Resource Group prior to releasing Chappelle’s special. They characterized it as harmful.
‘The release of Chappelle’s special, ‘The Closer,’ happened without consulting the Trans* Employee Resource Group (ERG), of which I was a member and co-leader.’
‘The ERG might have recommended not releasing the special — but that if that wasn’t an option, we could have offered other ways to minimize the harm it could do to our community and to the company.’
They continued, “But Netflix didn’t ask for guidance, deeply miscalculating and estimating the impact of this inflammatory. Inaccurate and dangerous content.”
Pagels Minor had called for an employee walkout Wednesday at Sunset Boulevard to protest the comedian’s controversial content in his Netflix comedy special. By 7pm that night, they were all out of work.
Pagels-Minor was instrumental in organizing Wednesday’s walkout.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings defended the platform’s decision to continue streaming Dave Chappelle’s controversial comedy special The Closer
They also cited the ill-planned timing for Chappelle’s Netflix special, which was released during LGBTQ+ history month and a day before the anniversary of the slaying of Matthew Shepard.
The ERG could have suggested that this special not be released in October during LGBTQ+ history month. Perhaps they could have considered not doing the special on October 5, the day prior to the anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s horrific death at University of Wyoming. Shepard was tortured, beaten, and left to die in Laramie on Oct. 6, 1998.
A spokesperson for the company confirmed Friday that the employee was fired for sharing confidential and commercially sensitive information with the outside world.
“We understand that this employee might have been motivated by disappointment or hurt at Netflix, but we are committed to maintaining a culture where trust and transparency are central to our company’s culture.”
Pagels-Minor was fired for sharing that Netflix spent $24.1 million on The Closer and $23.6 million on his 2019 special Sticks & Stones – ‘a charge I firmly deny’ they said in Thursday’s Op-Ed.
Comparatively, Netflix spent $3.9 million on Bo Burnham’s critically acclaimed comedy Special Inside and $21.4 Million for Squid Game, which quickly became Netflix’s most popular series launch.
Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings told staff the firm was ‘on the right side of history’ for continuing to stream and promote Dave Chappelle’s controversial comedy special The Closer.
An internal Netflix message board recording disagreements regarding Chappelle’s controversial comedy show was leaked.
Hastings told employees that Chappelle is ‘a unique voice’ as he defended the comedian who has come under fire for his defense of author J.K. Rowling and jokes a vocal few are calling transphobic.
Transgender employees were so upset at Netflix’s stance on ‘The Closer’ that they joined Pagels Minor in a staged walkout on Wednesday.
Hastings responded to a question from an employee asking if the company was making a wrong historical decision regarding hate speech on the internal message boards.
According to The New York Times: “I do believe that our commitments to artistic expressions and pleasing our members are the right long-term choices for Netflix. We are on the rightside, but only time will show.”
He also noted that Chappelle is very popular with viewers, citing the “stickiness” of his latest special.
The Closer received 96 percent positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes from regular viewers, but only 43 percent from woke critics.
Hastings wrote, “The core strategy is always to please our members.”
“In stand up comedy, comedians do many outrageous things for laughs. Some people enjoy the art form, or particular comedians, while others don’t.
Another employee claimed that the famous comedian had a history of homophobia and bigotry.
Hastings replied: “We disagree with your description and we’ll continue working with Dave Chappelle in future.
“We see him as a unique voice but can understand if others don’t want to watch his show.”
He added: “We don’t consider Dave Chappelle to be harmful or in need for any offset. This is something that we clearly and respectfully disagree with.”
This comes as Hastings’ fellow co-chief executive, Ted Sarandos, was dragged by Australian lesbian comedian Hannah Gadsby after he used her comedy specials as examples of the streaming platform’s efforts for inclusivity as he defended Chappelle and his comedy special.
Netflix boss Ted Sarandos defended Dave Chappelle’s The Closer special to staff by telling them in an email that “content on screen does not translate to real-world damage”.
Lesbian comedian Hannah Gadsby dragged Sarando on Instagram for using her name to defend Chappelle and Netflix’s ‘amoral algorithm cult’
Sarandos said that Netflix ‘was working hard to ensure marginalized communities aren’t defined by a single story’ specifically noting ‘we have Sex Education, Orange Is the New Black, Control Z, Hannah Gadsby and Dave Chappelle all on Netflix. This is possible by increasing diversity within the content team.
Gadsby, who has two comedy Specials on Netflix, rose in fame after her first special Nanette started streaming on Netflix.
She asked Sarandos on Instagram not to “drag”. [her]Enter your name [his]”Missing.”
‘F**k you and your amoral algorithm cult…’ she wrote.
Sarandos addressed anger at Netflix’s decision not to stream The Closer via an email to all employees.
‘We know that a number of you have been left angry, disappointed and hurt by our decision to put Dave Chappelle’s latest special on Netflix,’ Sarandos wrote in the email, obtained by Variety.
“With “The Closer,” we understand that the concern does not revolve around offensive-to-some content, but titles that could cause real harm (such as further marginalizing already-marginalized groups, hate, etc.).
“Last Year, we heard similar concerns regarding 365 Days of Violence Against Women. Although some employees may disagree with his assertions, he said that they believe that screen content doesn’t directly translate into real-world harm.
Movie 365 Days, referenced by Sarandos, is about an Italian mafia boss who kidnaps a woman he’s infatuated with and demands she spend the next year in his villa.
The film was condemned by survivors of sexual abuse, with Duffy writing an open letter stating that it ‘glamorizes violence, kidnapping, sex trafficking and rape’.
Sarandos’ memo continued, “The strongest evidence supporting this is that violence online has grown tremendously over thirty years, especially first party shooter video games, and yet violent crimes have fallen significantly in many other countries.”
‘Adults can watch violence, assault and abuse – or enjoy shocking stand-up comedy – without it causing them to harm others,’ he said.
GLAAD, a queer media watchdog, contested Sarandos’ claim, with a spokesperson telling Variety the organization was ‘founded 36 years ago because media representation has consequences for LGBTQ people.
They stated that authentic media stories about LGBTQ people have been cited as being directly responsible for raising public support for issues such as marriage equality.
“But TV and film have been filled with stereotypes about us for decades, leading directly to real world harm, particularly for trans people and LGBTQ peoples of color. Ironically, Netflix’s documentary “Disclosure” clearly demonstrates this.
In The Closer, Chapelle backed author J.K. Rowling over her comments on gender, said ‘gender is a fact’, and announced ‘I’m team TERF.’ TERF stands as Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist.
Some trans people and their allies use the term to attack anyone who disagrees with their call for equality for Trans people.
Hot topics include whether trans girls and women should be allowed to compete with girls in certain sports, whether trans girls should have access to certain spaces – including women’s prisons and domestic violence shelters for women – and whether trans children should be given hormones that will delay puberty.
Chapelle’s jokes were criticized by those who specifically pointed out the dangers faced by trans people as a result anti-trans ideology.
Chappelle claimed that the family of a transgender woman was harassed to death for defending his jokes on a 2019 Netflix show. They have since slammed him for trying to cancel them, saying they don’t know how much it cost her.
The Closer will be Chappelle’s last stand-up special on Netflix before taking a break
Daphne Dorman, 44 was a transgender comic who opened Dave Chappelle’s eyes to transgender people.
Daphne Dorman was 44 years old when she committed suicide in 2019. She had defended her friend Chappelle from jokes she made during a Netflix Special that year.
‘When she did that, the trans community dragged that b**** through Twitter,’ Chappelle told the audience in The Closer.
He continued, implying that harassment may have contributed to her suicide.
“It’s true; my heart was broken.” Although I don’t know what happened, I’ll bet that she was hurt by being dragged.
Dorman, who transitioned to a woman as a woman in 2014 was an up-and–coming comedian who opened a Chappelle show.
Her family said her humor was a mask for a dark past that left behind severe PTSD.
She said that despite her inner demons, she used her comedy skills to make the world around them laugh, according to her sister.
Her sister, who has defended Chappelle’s transgender jokes from critics, said that Chappelle ‘loved Dorman’. She also stated that people cannot expect everyone to see it the same way.