Netflix CEO defends censoring anti-government video in Saudi Arabia

Reed Hastings looking at the camera

"We're not trying to do 'truth to power, '" Hastings said at The New York Times DealBook Conference.

When Sorkin pushed Hastings on the fact that Netflix is now complicit in censoring critics in the Middle East, Hastings again trotted out the argument that Netflix is merely an entertainment channel rather than a new channel.

Sorkin, seemingly unsatisfied with what Hastings' rationale as to why Netflix need not stand up for freedom of speech, reminded the silicon valley leader that his company has engaged in hot-button political issues at home.

Karen Attiah, who worked with Khashoggi at The Washington Post, wrote that Minhaj "has been a strong, honest and [funny] voice challenging Saudi Arabia [and] Mohammed bin Salman" in the wake of her colleague's murder. Notably, Netflix said it would "re-think" filming in Georgia past year if the state passed an anti-abortion bill. "We would not comply with that", Hastings responded to the Times" reporter's pointed question. "And if you want to be an entertainment brand and it's really about sharing lifestyles, then you do have to draw hard lines, but they're around things that are around lifestyle, not, you know, the current news".

"If they came to us and said, "You can't have gay content, ' we wouldn't do that". "It's tough. If you want to be a news brand, then you have a different set of things that you do".

Minhaj, an alum of The Daily Show, criticized Saudi crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman and his alleged involvement in the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in an Patriot Act episode that debuted previous year. The CIA reportedly concluded previous year that the crown prince ordered the assassination of Khashoggi, but he's denied it.

He also said it was unlikely Netflix would threaten the business of movie theaters, and defended a recent experiment under which users can watch videos sped up 50%. Minhaj also talked about Saudi Arabia's connection to the crisis in Yemen. Netflix complied by removing the episode.

Netflix removed the video at the request of the Saudi government, which said it violated a Saudi law prohibiting distribution of content that impinges on public order, religious values, or public morals. And Hastings went on to argue that it can actually do good in the world by playing ball with the Saudi government's censors.



Latest news

When and where to watch PAK vs AUS 2nd T20I
Then it was just about timing the run and fortunately I was able to do that tonight". Australia's next T20I will be against Pakistan at the Manuka Oval on November 5.

Samsung leak showcases insane Galaxy S11 feature
The phone will nearly certainly launch in February or March, and will not be the only Galaxy S11-branded device. These hybrid-zoom systems offer improved quality of images than what can be captured using digital zoom.

Manchester United win 'template' for future performances - Solskjaer
It is certainly not guaranteed; Brighton actually head into the fixture two points and two places above their hosts in the table. Having mustered just one shot on target across their previous two Europa League matches, they had seven against Partizan.

Measles virus 'wipes out immunity to other infections'
Those antibodies are the blood proteins that "remember" past encounters with viruses and help the body avoid repeat infections. Rewers said rebuilding immune memory is not easy; it could require getting re-vaccinated, or getting sick all over again.

What other Senate candidates said about Sessions joining race
Trump is scheduled to visit Alabama this weekend to attend the Alabama-LSU game college football game on Saturday. Other candidates have included Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill, businessman Stanley Adair and state Rep.

Other news