Netflix promised greater transparency regarding their viewership data during their first quarter earnings report on Tuesday. According to Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer, “Over the next several months, we’re going to be rolling out more specific and granular data and reporting. First to our producers, then our members and, of course, to the press over time and be more fully transparent about what people are watching on Netflix around the world.”
This statement came after Netflix had just released more data concerning the Umbrella Academy series as well as films such as the Fyre Festival documentary and The Highwaymen. The announcements came after Netflix’s first quarter earnings report, according to Deadline. Since this statement, Netflix has only released limited data, such as with Bird Box, but has generally kept a tight lid on its original content, like House of Cards. This move might possibly be due to Netflix’s new competitors: Disney+ and Apple Stories.
“We are trying to get to a place where we can be a lot more transparent both with our producers and with our customers, who are incredibly interested in making better choices,” Sarandos added, noting that “A lot of times that’s influenced heavily by what the world’s watching.”
Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix, also chimed in: “We’re just beginning to share that data as Ted mentioned and we’ll be leaning into that more quarter by quarter. The real metric is can we keep our members happy and grow that subscriber base as we did so strongly in Q1.”
Concerning the upcoming streaming competitors, Hastings added that Netflix was not the least bit deterred, and in fact were excited at the prospect, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “We don’t anticipate that these new entrants will materially affect our growth because the transition from linear to on demand entertainment is so massive,” Hastings confirmed.
Richard Greenfield, BTIG Research analyst, concurred: “Investors and the media are obsessed with the Disney vs. Netflix narrative, which reminds us of the Amazon vs. Netflix narrative from a few years ago.” He also added that this competition might bolster Netflix, as it would persuade more people to leave cable and satellite television.
During the meeting, it was revealed that there were 9.6 million new subscribers, which was the highest quarterly paid net additions in Netflix’s entire history. This was much higher than Netflix itself had projected, especially in light of its recent price hike, leaving Netflix with a total of 148.9 million subscribers. During the breakdown, it was shown that 7.86 million of the new subscribers came internationally, which is where Netflix now plans on making their mark, according to Deadline.