Netflix fires 3 senior marketing execs for secretly complaining about their company’s top brass over Slack, report says

The Netflix company logo is seen on a sign in front of Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos, California.
Netflix fired three senior executives for airing complaints about their boss on Slack, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Netflix has fired three senior executives within its film marketing team for airing complaints via private Slack messages about company leadership, The Hollywood Reporter reported Thursday.

The executives, who accounted for around half of Netflix’s staff at that level according to the publication, had also criticized their direct boss, Jonathan Helfgot, the VP of original film marketing, THR reported, which said that while Helfgot himself was reluctant, he ultimately gave in to pressure from more senior leadership to fire the three employees.

Netflix did not immediately respond to a request for comment on this story.

Netflix is known for a unique company culture that it famously outlined publicly in a 127-slide deck in 2009, which stated that it valued “radical transparency” – a value that leads to intense feedback during its annual 360-degree reviews.

A Netflix insider told THR given the company’s emphasis on candor, it may have actually been the way in which the executives communicated their gripes – through Slack messages they believed to be private – rather than the substance, that got them fired.

The messages weren’t private however, an employee who discovered several months’ worth of the conversations reported them to Netflix, according to THR.

The executives’ gripes also targeted Netflix chief marketing officer Bozoma Saint John, according to THR. Saint John, a rising star in the company, has gained a reputation for her connections to political luminaries like the Obamas and fashion icons like Anna Wintour, and is known as unapologetically outspoken and a role model for women of color who have been notoriously underrepresented at the executive level of major companies.

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A-list guests are descending on Sun Valley for the annual Allen & Co. conference. Here’s who’s been spotted at one of the business world’s most exclusive events.

Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos walk with suitcases at Sun Valley 2021
Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos, co-CEOs of Netflix, arrive at the Allen & Co. Sun Valley Conference on July 06, 2021.

  • A-list guests have arrived in Sun Valley, Idaho, the site of the annual Allen & Co. conference.
  • The ultra-exclusive event lures some of the biggest names in finance, tech, and media.
  • Sheryl Sandberg, Reed Hastings, Ted Sarandos, Doug McMillon and dozens more have arrived so far.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The Sun Valley conference is officially in full swing.

This week, A-listers from the worlds of tech, media, and finance are descending upon Sun Valley, Idaho, for a week of networking, panel discussions, and outdoor pursuits hosted by private investment bank Allen & Co.

The annual event, which was canceled last year due to the pandemic, has historically been a breeding ground for blockbuster deals: Jeff Bezos’ purchase of The Washington Post was born out of conversations at Sun Valley, and Disney’s $19 billion acquisition of ABC was hatched at Sun Valley as well.

Read more: Big brands like Nike and Neiman Marcus are snapping up tech companies as e-commerce takes off and first-party data becomes paramount

While we’ll have to wait and see what comes of this year’s conference, we can at least get a glimpse of which moguls have arrived at this year’s ultra-exclusive enclave.

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and her husband, Tom Bernthal

Sheryl Sandberg and her husband Tom Bernthal holding hands

SoFi CEO Anthony Noto

Anthony Noto walks out of Sun Valley Lodge

David Zaslav, CEO of Discovery Communications

David Zaslav is interviewed by reporters at Sun Valley

IAC Chairman Barry Diller

Barry Diller behind the wheel of a car smiling

Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos, co-CEOs of Netflix

Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos walk with suitcases at Sun Valley 2021
Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos, co-CEOs of Netflix, arrive at the Allen & Co. Sun Valley Conference on July 06, 2021.

Aurora CEO Chris Urmson

Chris Urmson lifts car tailgate while wearing face mask

Former hedge fund manager Stanley Druckenmiller

Stanley Druckenmiller exits white SUV at Sun Valley

Rakuten CEO Mickey Mikitani

Mickey Mikitani arrives at Sun Valley wearing sunglasses

Greg Maffei, CEO Liberty Media and chairman of Live Nation Entertainment

Greg Maffei adjusts face mask while walking

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts

Brian Roberts waves while getting out of car at Sun Valley

Dan Rose, Facebook’s vice president of partnerships

Dan Rose gets out of SUV at Sun Valley

Disney chairman Bob Iger

Bob Iger walks into Sun Valley Lodge

Snowflake CEO Frank Slootman

Frank Slootman wearing a mask while walking out of Sun Valley Lodge

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon

Doug McMillon gets out of car at Sun Valley

Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors

Mary Barra removing face mask at Sun Valley

Retired US Army General David Petraeus arrives for the conference.

David Petraeus walks holding smartphone at Sun Valley

Disney CEO Bob Chapek

Bob Chapek looking at camera wearing blue shirt

Former AOL CEO Tim Armstrong

Tim Armstrong waves while looking over shoulder

Brain Grazer, the founder of Imagine Entertainment, and his wife, Veronica Smiley

Brian Grazer walks smiling with Veronica Smiley at Sun Valley

Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg

Hans Vestberg waves while holding water bottle next to "Private Function" sign

Jason Kilar, CEO of WarnerMedia

Jason Kilar holds his mask and talks to someone at Sun Valley

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick

Bobby Kotick puts suitcase on hotel trolley

Shari Redstone, chairman of ViacomCBS

Shari Redstone smiling while walking

Jeff Shell, CEO of NBCUniversal

Jeff Shell smiles while holding bag

Survey Monkey CEO Zander Lurie

Zander Lurie holding folder while arriving at Sun Valley

Former New York City mayor and former presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg

Michael Bloomberg arrives at Sun Valley

Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots

Robert Kraft points while standing outside wearing sunglasses

IAC CEO Joey Levin

Joey Levin standing at fence outside Sun Valley Lodge

Nike CEO John Donahoe and his wife, Eileen

John Donahoe and his wife Eileen walk together
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