Netflix now has 30 full-time staffers devoted to public policy, with 26 of those staffers focused on Netflix’s operations abroad, and just four based in DC, per The Hollywood Reporter. Netflix, which operates in more than 190 countries worldwide, now has policy reps in countries including France, Australia, India, Korea, Germany, Mexico, and Brazil.
Netflix is expanding abroad not by exporting US-centric content, but by creating “localized” fare, and its policy arm highlights a major challenge with that approach: navigating local environments. While other media companies operate internationally, on-demand streaming offerings are fundamentally different because they’re disruptive to the existing media environment.
In response, these markets are prioritizing the preservation of local film and TV industries. Some even create stipulations for foreign entrants like Netflix: For example, the EU is introducing a new rule set to be finalized by the end of this year that will require a 30% quota for “on-demand audiovisual media services” like Netflix, meaning that it will need to ensure that at least 30% of its offering in the country is made up of European productions.
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