Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings offered some of his thoughts on billionaire and Twitter boss Elon Musk while speaking Wednesday at a New York Times summit.
Hastings told Andrew Ross Sorkin, founder and editor of DealBook in The New York Times, that he believes Musk is the “bravest, most creative person on the planet.”[ads1]; He said what Musk has “done in several areas is phenomenal.”
Musk serves as CEO of Twitter, Tesla and SpaceX and co-founded OpenAI, Neuralink and The Boring Company. He completed his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in late October, and has implemented major changes to the social media platform since then.
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“His style is different than, ‘I’m trying to be a really steady, respectable leader,’ you know. He doesn’t care,” Hastings said at the DealBook summit. “He’s just like out there.”
“Think of a guy who spends $44 billion. He could have built the biggest … he could have built a mile-long yacht for $44 billion,” he added. “But it’s not good for the planet, so he’s not interested. He’s into things that help.”
Hastings is “100% convinced of that [Musk] trying to help the world in all his endeavors,” he told Sorkin. He said he believes Musk is “trying to help the world” on Twitter “because he believes in free speech and its power for democracy.”
The Netflix co-CEO went on to suggest Musk’s method “is not how I would do it,” but noted that he is “deeply respectful.”
“I’m surprised people are so picky about him on — yeah, sorry — the blue badge. He messes up some things,” Hastings said. “Give the guy a break. He just used all this money to try to make it much better for democracy and society, to have a more open platform, and I’m sympathetic to that agenda.”
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Musk launched the platform’s verification subscription service earlier in November, and accounts impersonating public figures and companies subsequently appeared on the platform, FOX Business previously reported.
He rolled back the function and has since said Twitter would wait to relaunch it “until there is a high level of confidence in stopping impersonation.”
The Netflix co-CEO’s comments at the summit caught Musk’s attention online. Responding to a clip of them, the Twitter boss said: “Wow, thanks for the kind words @reedhastings.”
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The New York Times’ annual DealBook Summit took place in New York City. Important interviewees and speakers include Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Meta Platform CEO Mark Zuckerberg and FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried.