Netflix has reinstated three employees, including a trans senior software engineer who criticized the streamer’s new Dave Chappelle comedy special, after suspending and investigating the group for crashing a meeting of its top executives.
Terra Field, one of the suspended employees, shared her reinstatement by the company on her Twitter. Field also included a screenshot of her correspondence with Netflix officials, in which Field was informed that an investigation found that she did not join the meeting with any ill intent, nor did she think there was anything wrong with seeking access to the meeting.
“Netflix has reinstated me after finding that there was no ill-intent in my attending the QBR meeting,” Field wrote.
The veracity of Field’s statement was confirmed by a Netflix spokesperson to Variety. The source also confirmed that the two other suspended employees had also been reinstated by Netflix and that the company “will be distributing broader guidance about meetings and clarifying which are for which people.”
Field, who identifies as queer and trans, and two other Netflix employees were suspended late last week for attending the “QBR” — the company’s quarterly business review that convenes the streamer’s top 500 employees — without being invited. A Netflix spokesperson restated that Field’s suspension was solely based on her attendance at the “QBR,” and not a result of her public criticism of the language used by Dave Chappelle in the comedian’s new Netflix special “The Closer.”
“It is absolutely untrue to say that we have suspended any employees for tweeting about this show,” Netflix said in a statement on Monday. “Our employees are encouraged to disagree openly and we support their right to do so.”
Last Wednesday, Field wrote a Twitter thread criticizing Chappelle for his “attacks [on] the trans community” in “The Closer.” “Yesterday we launched another Chappelle special where he attacks the trans community, and the very validity of transness – all while trying to pit us against other marginalized groups. You’re going to hear a lot of talk about ‘offense.’ We are not offended.” Field went on to say of Chappelle, “our existence is ‘funny’ to him – and when we object to his harm, we’re ‘offended.’” She then listed numerous names of trans people, specifically highlighting trans women of color, killed in hate crimes.”
Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos defended Dave Chappelle in a company memo obtained by Variety on Monday. “As with our other talent, we work hard to support their creative freedom — even though this means there will always be content on Netflix some people believe is harmful,” Sarandos wrote.
Last week, Jaclyn Moore, a showrunner on Netflix’s original series “Dear White People,” spoke out against Chappelle’s special in a conversation with Variety. Moore shared that she “never loved Dave’s trans material before but this time it felt different. This is the first time I felt like, ‘Oh, people are laughing at this joke and they’re agreeing that it’s absurd to call me a woman.’”