Netflix is drawing criticism for advertising an artificial intelligence (AI) product manager role with a salary of up to $900,000 amid an ongoing strike by actors and writers. Hollywood has been at a standstill since 14 July, when the Screen Actors Guild of America – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) joined the Writers Guild of America (WGA) in demanding higher pay and increased protections against AI replacing their work.
Concerns about AI taking over jobs, including those of actors, have been voiced by several high-profile individuals. Succession star Brian Cox recently spoke out against AI during a rally in London, calling it a “scary” technology. Meanwhile, Netflix continues to invest in AI, as seen through the company’s job listing for a Product Manager – Machine Learning Platform with a salary range of $300,000 to $900,000.
The job description states that the individual in this role will gather feedback and understand user needs from ML/AI practitioners and application engineers at Netflix. They will use this information to prioritize areas of investment for the platform. Comedian Rob Delaney, who participated in the rally alongside Cox, criticized the job listing, stating that the salary of one AI employee could provide healthcare coverage for 35 actors and their families.
Other actors, such as John Cusack, Mandy Moore, and Mara Wilson, have shared their pay stories in support of the strike. Disney CEO Bob Iger expressed his concern about the strike’s impact, stating that the timing of the disruption is unfavorable. Breaking Bad actor Bryan Cranston responded to Iger’s comments, emphasizing the importance of protecting jobs from automation.
Netflix has declined to comment on the matter. The strike continues as actors and writers fight for fair pay and job security in the face of advancing AI technology.