Back in February, Netflix CFO David Wells said that his company was set to spend more than $8 billion on content in 2018, a figure that contributes to the 700 original TV shows and 80 movies it will offer globally this year. There can be little doubt, Netflix is now a powerful creator and commissioner of content in its own right.
This shift in strategy raises some interesting points, not least concerning the company’s attitude toward piracy. While the MPAA has spat venom over the issue for decades, Netflix has appeared somewhat more relaxed. Quietly, however, Netflix understands that scraping every possible dollar from consumers while restricting the availability of pirated content is something it must sink resources into.
Back in 2017, we revealed the existence of Netflix’s Global Copyright Protection Group when the company advertised for a Global Copyright Protection Counsel. Since then the company has recruited more individuals to the cause and this week advertised for another new recruit.
Netflix’s new Copyright and Content Protection Coordinator will work with the Global Copyright & Content Protection Group to protect Netflix Originals, the TV shows and movies for which Netflix owns the rights.
“The ideal candidate will have carried out a similar role at another company and can hit the ground running,” the listing for the position reads.
“He or she should have experience of anti-piracy initiatives and be very well versed in managing an effective notice and take down program and experience of working with YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Google, Bing, VK, Daily Motion and other well known platforms.”
Although Netflix’s business model is somewhat different to that of more traditional studios, the company faces the same problems with pirate links appearing online. To that end, the successful applicant will be expected to disrupt this availability as much as possible, particularly through the management of the company’s DMCA notice sending systems.
The company’s new coordinator will be expected to carry out daily scanning of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Periscope, Google Search, Bing, VK, DailyMotion and other platforms used for piracy. Fingerprinting technologies on YouTube (ContentID) and Facebook (Rights Manager) will also need to be monitored, with attention paid to content that’s uploaded in a way that circumvents those recognition systems.
Of course, these legitimate platforms are just the tip of a very large iceberg. It seems likely that Netflix content is more likely to be found illegally on torrent and streaming platforms so these will need to be tackled too, with Netflix advising that the candidate will gather data on “pirate streaming sites, cyberlockers and usenet platforms.”
While Netflix is now a true competitor to the mainstream Hollywood studios and companies like Amazon, they all have to deal with piracy in roughly the same way. These synergies were formalized last June with the debut of the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment, a coalition of 30 companies dedicated to presenting a united front against piracy.
As a founding member of ACE, Netflix contributes $5m per year to the alliance. This expensive relationship needs to be nurtured so the new coordinator will have responsibilities there too, working with other ACE members to tackle the piracy threat.
The full listing can be found here.