A former Netflix engineer who organised the company-wide walkout following the release of Dave Chapelle’s controversial comedy special, The Closer, has resigned.
The Closer sparked backlash from the LGBTQ community, queer organisations, and high-profile celebrities over a series of jokes about the transgender community.
Last month, Terra Field, a trans engineer at Netflix, organised a company-wide walkout in protest of the special. Field, alongside program engineer B. Pagels-Minor, argued that Netflix had allowed the longstanding comedian to vilify “the trans community, and the very validity of transness” in the show.
The protest came after Field had been suspended by Netflix after crashing a meeting of top executives. She was later reinstated.
B Pagels-Minor, who is also trans, was fired by Netflix for allegedly disclosing confidential financial information about what the streaming service paid for The Closer to reporters at Bloomberg — an accusation she denies.
“I was told that while I was a well-respected member of Netflix, it seemed likely that I was the source of leaked information that appeared in the media — a charge I firmly deny,” Pagels-Minor wrote in an op-ed for The Washington Post.
Field took to Twitter on Monday to announce to her followers that she had decided to resign from the company. “This isn’t how I thought things would end, but I am relieved to have closure,” Field wrote.
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“When I was looking to change teams at Netflix, when I was trying to decide if I needed a break from my ERG leadership role, and when I was suspended from Netflix in October, there was one person whose advice I sought in all three cases: B. Pagels-Minor.
“Shortly after B. was fired for something I did not and do not believe they did, I made a decision: sink or swim, I was going to walk side by side with B. as they had for so many of us while they led the Trans* ERG. Last week, B. had their son. They are both happy and healthy, and for me that is the note that I’d like this chapter of my life to end on. I want to focus on the joy, not the heartache.”
The statement continues, “I am going to take a month to rest, recover, and consider what I want to do next, Field wrote. “I have been working full time since 2003 and I don’t think I’ve ever taken more than a week or two off at once other than for medical leave. Hopefully, the time will allow me to remember the things I love and miss about this work.”
I resigned from Netflix yesterday, you can read my resignation letter below. I’m not happy that this is how things turned out, but I do think this outcome is the best for all parties involved. https://t.co/K6Bt5is5wz #NetflixWalkout
— Terra Field (@RainofTerra) November 22, 2021
A Netflix spokesperson released a statement in light of Field’s public resignation, writing, “We have resolved our differences in a way that acknowledges the erosion of trust on both sides and, we hope, enables everyone to move on.”
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