Netflix, the global streaming giant, recently posted a job opening for a Product Manager for its Machine Learning Platform, a role that could pay up to $900K a year. This move, however, has sparked controversy and backlash amid ongoing strikes by the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), who are seeking protections against AI.
According to an article by Armando Tonoco for Deadline, the job posting highlights the increasing role of AI in the entertainment industry, with the description stating, “Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence is powering innovation in all areas of the business. From helping us buy and create great content, helping members choose the right title for them through personalization, to optimizing our payment processing and other revenue-focused initiatives.”
However, the timing of the job posting has struck a nerve with industry professionals. The WGA and SAG-AFTRA are currently on strike, with one of their key issues being the lack of protections against AI. The high salary attached to the job posting has also been a point of contention, with critics arguing that the funds could be better used to support actors and writers.
Elizabeth Benjamin, a writer on shows like Dead to Me and The Flight Attendant, expressed her dismay on X:
Netflix declined to comment when reached by Deadline. Meanwhile, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) has maintained that they are committed to discussing concerns around AI and stated that “AI-generated material would not be eligible for writing credit.”