Chief Communications Officer Jonathan Friedland has left Netflix after he used the N-word in front of colleagues on more than one occasion.
Friedland issued an apology on Twitter on Friday, June 22 and said he's leaving the company after seven years.
Leaders have to be beyond reproach in the example we set and unfortunately I fell short of that standard when I was insensitive in speaking to my team about words that offend in comedy. I feel awful about the distress this lapse caused to people at a company I love and where I want everyone to feel included and appreciated.
Friedland wrote on his Twitter account.
I’m leaving Netflix after seven years. Leaders have to be beyond reproach in the example we set and unfortunately I fell short of that standard when I was insensitive in speaking to my team about words that offend in comedy.
— jonathan friedland (@jsf33) June 22, 2018
Variety has obtained a copy of a memo Netflix (NFLX) CEO Reed Hasting sent to his employees to explain the situation. The accuracy of the memo was confirmed by CNNMoney through a source familiar with the matter.
The memo recounts an accident dated a month back when Friedland used the N-word during a meeting with Netflix public relations staff during a discussion about 'sensitive words'. And according to Hastings' memo, several people felt offended by the use of N-word.
The public relations staff incident wasn't yet over, Friedland, just a few days back, went on to use the N-word in front of two black employees in Netflix's human resources department when they were speaking with him about the prior incident, Hasting said in the memo.
Hasting added that, in his perspective, there is "not a way to neutralize the emotion the N-word carries and history behind the word."
The use of the phrase 'N-word' was created as a euphemism, and the norm, with the intention of providing an acceptable replacement and moving people away from using the specific word,
Many of us have worked closely with Jonathan for a long time, and have mixed emotions. Unfortunately, his lack of judgment in this area was too big for him to remain.
Netflix has declined to issue any further comments.