Netflix Shareholders Oppose Executive Pay Package Amid Writers’ Strike


Netflix shareholders reportedly voted against an executive pay package amid a strike by Hollywood writers.

The non-binding vote was taken Thursday (June 1) as the strike entered its fifth week, Reuters reported Friday (June 2).

Netflix spent $166 million on compensation for top executives last year while writers are seeking to improve their own compensation to $68 million a year, Writers Guild West President Meredith Stiehm said in a letter to the streaming services provider, according to the report.

The tally of the vote will be reported in a regulatory filing, the report said.

Last year, just 23% of the company’s shareholders voted for that year’s executive pay package. Netflix responded by adding a salary cap for its co-chief executives and making a bonus plan based on performance, per the report.

The union’s letter was part of an effort to pressure media companies to return to the bargaining table, according to the report.

Negotiations have stalled over issues that include improved pay and residuals, changes in working conditions and the use of artificial intelligence (AI), the report said.

The union sent a similar letter opposing an executive pay package to Comcast, the owner of NBCUniversal, which will hold a shareholder meeting on June 7, per the report.

This dispute comes at a time when consumers are showing a strong attachment to streaming services but are also concerned about affordability as inflation drags on.

During the first quarter, Netflix reduced subscription prices between 20% and 45% in more than 30 international markets, although not in the United States, Europe and Asia.

Cost is the most common driver for cancellations of subscription plans, with 56% of consumers canceling a subscription in the previous 12 months for that reason, according to the “Subscription Commerce Readiness Report,” a PYMNTS and collaboration.

Netflix also began its long-threatened crackdown on password sharing in May by sending an email to members who share Netflix outside their household in the U.S. and reminding them that an account is for use by only one household.

It was reported in October 2022 that the firm’s crackdown on password sharing was slated to take effect sometime this year but has been an open wound for the company for over a decade.