Netflix implements new sexual harassment policy

Netflix’s show “House of Cards” was canceled after series star Kevin Spacey was accused of sexual harassment

FILE PHOTO: The Netflix logo is shown in this illustration photograph in Encinitas

Netflix has reportedly banned workers from looking at each other for more than five seconds as part of its new anti-harassment rules.

The new policy also bans the company’s film crews from asking their colleagues for their phone numbers, according to an article in the Sun.

“Senior staff went to a harassment meeting to learn what is and isn’t appropriate,” an on-set runner told the Sun. “Looking at anyone longer than five seconds is considered creepy.”

“You mustn’t ask for someone’s number unless they have given permission for it to be distributed,” the source continued. “And if you see any unwanted behavior, report it immediately.”

Other new rules include: “Don’t give lingering hugs or touch anyone for a lengthy period of time,” “Don’t ask out a colleague more than once if they have said no,” “Steer clear of a colleague once they have said they are not interested in you,” and “Don’t flirt.” The rules also encourage employees to “Shout ‘Stop, don’t do that again!’ if a colleague has been inappropriate.”

  • If you stare at someone for more than five seconds, it’s creepy and inappropriate. Reportedly, this has caused joking on the set, as it should, because really? And what if I’m speaking with you and you speak for more than five seconds, do I need to look away every 4.5 seconds so as to not be creepy? What if I’m staring into space and you think I’m looking at you? How do you prove I was? How do I prove I wasn’t?
  • No asking co-workers for their phone numbers. I’m concerned that people who work for Netflix don’t communicate. Sure, no one calls anymore, but we use phone numbers to text and WhatsApp. Maybe everyone has to communicate via Slack? Maybe there’s no asking for home phone numbers? As if we have those anymore. And what’s the difference between sending a WhatsApp message and a Slack message? Is the former inherently romantic?
  • Shout “Stop! Don’t do that again!” if you feel harassed. I can kind of get behind this one. If someone pinches your behind or drops his pants, then shouting and causing a scene is the right thing to do. But if someone asks you for your phone number? Hmmm, that’s taking it to a ridiculous level.

Leave a Reply