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Netflix Lays Off 150 Employees Amid Subscriber Decline

A sign beyond red flowers reads: Netflix in red lettersd
Netflix is laying off 150 employees to rein in costs amid slowing revenue growth disclosed during the streaming giant's first-quarter earnings call.
(Justin Sullivan
Getty Images)
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Streaming giant Netflix is laying off an additional 150 employees as of Tuesday, the company confirmed to NPR. The labor restructuring is the latest signal of a major shift within the company as it reported a decline in subscribers for the first time in a decade.

This month, layoffs of employees and contractors for the Netflix fan site Tudum made waves online. People criticized the company for letting go of staff who had been recently recruited and for the lack of internal marketing of their work.

The employees let go on Tuesday are "mostly U.S.-based," a Netflix spokesperson told NPR in a statement.

"These changes are primarily driven by business needs rather than individual performance, which makes them especially tough as none of us want to say goodbye to such great colleagues," the spokesperson said.

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Netflix is making these changes to rein in costs amid the slowing revenue growth revealed during its first-quarter earnings call.

These layoffs are reflective of a cultural change that Netflix is undergoing. In the wake of controversial programming on its platform, the tech giant recently altered its corporate culture memo to say employees may have to work on projects they find harmful.

"We program for a diversity of audiences and tastes; and we let viewers decide what's appropriate for them, versus having Netflix censor specific artists or voices," the updated section reads.

Netflix, once a major disrupter to the entertainment industry, is struggling to hold onto its dominance. Other possible changes that have riled the public as of late include a purported crackdown on password sharing.

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