Netflix eyes AI amid Hollywood strike, offers high-paying AI positions

As the Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists/Writers Guild of America (SAG-AFTRA/WGA) strike over the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in film and TV production enters its second week, Netflix is advertising for AI developers to fill Product Manager and Technical Director positions within its R&D Labs and Machine Learning division.

In the job posting, Netflix stated that they are establishing a fresh product management position with the aim of enhancing the effectiveness of their Machine Learning Platform.

According to Netflix, both roles will be located at the stream platform’s headquarters in Los Gatos, California, but they offer the flexibility to work remotely. The positions come with six-figure salaries, ranging from $450,000 to $650,000 for the Technical Director role and $300,000 to $900,000 for the Product Manager position.

Both writers and actors in Hollywood share concerns about the increasing use of AI. Writers fear that generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT, may potentially replace their jobs, while actors are alarmed about their faces and bodies being scanned for background roles. This data capture raises worries about the indefinite use of their likeness for minimal or no compensation.

The job advertisement highlights the significant demand for machine learning and AI expertise, particularly given the rapid advancement of AI since the introduction of OpenAI’s ChatGPT in November. Both positions necessitate experience in game design and the machine learning domain. Interestingly, neither role explicitly mandates a college degree as a requirement.

Related: SEC passes new ‘conflict of interest’ rules governing how brokers can use AI

As per the Netflix LinkedIn job posting, the vacancies emerged last week, which interestingly coincided with the breakdown of negotiations between SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). Consequently, the actors showing solidarity with the striking writers decided to join them on the picket line.

This development has added a layer of significance to the situation, with both parties expressing their concerns and demands through collective action during this critical period of contract negotiations in the film and television industry.

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