Netflix employee resigns: ‘As a trans person I couldn’t continue working there’

A screen icon that says Netflix
Trans Netflix employee Oliver Whitney is leaving the streaming service.
(Dan Goodman / Associated Press)

The editorial and publishing manager in Netflix’s film department has left the streaming service over “what happened last fall” with comedian Dave Chappelle’s recent stand-up special on the platform.

“i’m no longer at Netflix,” former manager Oliver Whitney tweeted Friday. “too complex to sum up in a tweet, but after what happened last fall, i decided this week that as a trans person i couldn’t continue working there.”


Whitney will “be back on the freelance grind soon” and available to work in jobs that intersect with film, editorial and social content.

Whitney did not immediately respond to The Times’ request for comment Friday. A Netflix spokesperson confirmed Whitney’s exit from the company but declined to comment further.

Upon release last October, Chappelle’s explosive Netflix special “The Closer” was widely criticized for the comedian’s transphobic comments and support for author J.K. Rowling.

After trans Netflix employees protested, these stories explain the backlash sparked by Dave Chappelle’s latest comedy special, “The Closer.”

Oct. 20, 2021

Later that month, Netflix fired an employee for allegedly leaking financial data that detailed how much the company paid for “The Closer.” That employee, program manager B. Pagels-Minor, was one of the key organizers in the employee protest and walkout that drew international attention.

Pagels-Minor and senior software engineer Terra Field were leaders in the Netflix employee group Trans*, which had criticized the special. The two also filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board that alleged the streamer tried to stop them from speaking up about working conditions.

They later withdrew the labor complaint and Fields resigned.