Netflix publishes industry’s first cultural and racial diversity report

[Reporter Yang So-young on the Daily Economy Star Today]

Netflix, together with the USC Annanberg Inclusion Policy Research Team, published the first diversity report in the entertainment industry. The purpose of this report is to evaluate the diversity projected on the content and to find ways to promote it.

In line with the publication of this report, Netflix Co-Chief Executive Officer and Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said, “We believe that great stories can be created across backgrounds and cultures and can be loved anywhere. We look forward to seeing a greater wind of change created by diversity not only on Netflix, but also across the industry, as we have laid an important cornerstone for diversity by retracement of the path we have taken so far.”

The study was conducted in collaboration with Dr. Stacy L. Smith, founder and director of the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, which has a world-class authority in the field of diversity.

The research team used 22 diversity indicators, including gender, race, ethnicity, gender minority, and disability, to assess diversity and establish directions for improvement, and through this, Netflix released 126 in the U.S. in 2018 and 2019. The composition of the production crew, including creators, producers, writers, and directors, as well as the cast appearing on the screen among the convenient movies and 180 TV series works were analyzed.

Research shows that Netflix’s diversity is improving every year in 19 items. In both movies and TV series, the ratio of female directors of colored races and female creators of series has increased, and the role of actors who realize gender equality in the lead role has been taking place. In addition, the proportion of black actors in solo and co-starring and major casts also exceeded the industry.

However, the proportion of Latin Americans, Middle Eastern/North African descent, American/Alaskan natives, and Native Hawaiians compared to the U.S. population was found to be significantly lower. In addition, the report pointed out that there is a need for continuous efforts to increase the proportion of the LGBTQ community and characters with disabilities appearing in original Netflix works.

In addition, the research team confirmed that increasing the diversity of Netflix employees and production crew has a positive effect on securing diversity of cast members. In line with this, Netflix announced that it will create a creative development fund worth USD 100 million, invest for the next five years, and help provide jobs by discovering and training talented people around the world who are marginalized in the content industry through cooperation with various external organizations. In addition, the diversity survey will continue every two years until 2026, and such research will be expanded in other countries outside the United States.

After making TV series such as ‘House of Cards’ and ‘Orange Is the New Black’ in 2013, Netflix has expanded its scope to films and documentaries, and has endeavored to convey more diverse characters and cultures. Furthermore, in Korea, ‘Narae Park’s Nongyeom Advisory’, the first in Korea to present a Netflix stand-up comedy, ‘The School Nurse Files’ with author Jeong Se-Rang and Director Lee Kyung-mi as two unrivaled female creators, and Netflix, featuring multinational cast members as scheduled releases this year The original sitcom ‘So Not Worth It’, etc., and continues to attempt to secure the diversity of content and creators.

Photo courtesy|Netflix

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