Netflix

‘WOKE MIND VIRUS’: Elon Musk says Netflix is ‘unwatchable’ as platform’s shares nosedive

Netflix was, not that long ago, the most popular streaming service for movies and television shows. Today, however, it is losing its popularity by thousands of subscribers daily. Tesla billionaire Elon Musk says this is largely due to what he calls the “woke mind virus”. He is referring to the platform’s focus on programming that is considered “woke”, or politically correct, and nothing else.

Elon Musk Says Netflix’s Failure Is Due To Woke Mind Virus

Streaming service giant Netflix announced that in the first quarter of 2022, it has lost 200,000 subscribers. They are projecting up to 2 million lost subscribers by the end of the second quarter of the year. There are a variety of reasons for this. Primarily, many people are complaining that not only do their prices continue to rise, but they also continue to remove shows and movies, all the while replacing them with ones that, frankly, the people don’t want. 

Elon Musk agrees, however, he has cited the service with a different issue that he believes is killing it faster than its prices: Woke mind virus. This is a term that he first coined in December of last year. In response to a tweet about Netflix’s losses, Musk wrote “the woke mind virus is making Netflix unwatchable”. (1)

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What Is Woke Mind Virus?

According to Musk, woke mind virus is the oversensitivity of people towards being politically correct. Or, as we now like to call it, being “woke”. Netflix has received much criticism from many viewers for its lean towards “woke” politics and sexually explicit content. For example, in autumn 2020 Netflix cancellations rose 800% after they released the French film Cuties. The movie shows pre-pubescent girls in sexually provocative situations. Netflix argued that it is a commentary against the sexualization of young children, however, the public still found the movie a final straw for them. (2)

Read: ‘Don’t Look Up’ Is Basically About How Collectively Stupid Society Is

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A World WIthout Humor

Though Netflix is currently on the receiving end of Musk’s anti-wokeness wrath, this is not the first time he has spoken out about this topic. In an interview last December, Musk said that ‘woke mind virus’ is a “world without humor”. This came not long after there were public calls for Netflix to take down Dave Chappelle’s stand-up comedy special. There were many people calling his special out for being transphobic. Musk, however, said that comedy is innately controversial, and if you decry every comedian for what they say on stage, comedy will no longer be funny.

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“Generally, I think we should be aiming for a positive society and it should be OK to be humorous. Wokeness basically wants to make comedy illegal, which is not cool,” Musk said. “At its heart, wokeness is divisive, exclusionary and hateful. It basically gives mean people a shield to be cruel, armored in false virtue.” (3)

Buys Twitter in a Bid for Free Speech

In breaking news, Musk is actually on his way to be the owner of Twitter (4). This is another platform that he has criticized for censoring people who do not necessarily share the “woke” mindset. He says he is making a bid for free speech by purchasing Twitter. Currently, he owns some stake in the platform but that will change.

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Reports say that Musk bought twitter for 44 billion dollars (4). He was even reportedly willing to put in $10-$15 billion of his own money in order to make it happen. Musk detests the way that Twitter has been shutting down more conservative voices or opinions that they as a company do not share. If he achieves his goal of buying up enough shares to make Twitter private, he will likely change its censorship policies. 

People who currently work for Twitter are worried that he will change the company’s policies on inclusivity. Musk, however, as well as many of his more conservative supporters, are calling it a bid for free speech. 

Twitter’s board of directors, however, did not back down. They enacted what was called a “poison pill” strategy in order to defend themselves. Essentially, this strategy makes it nearly impossibly expensive for any one person or company to buy up too many shares in the company. However, the strategy didn’t end up having an effect as Musk is now inline to own the company.

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Sources

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  1. Elon Musk rips Netflix for ‘woke mind virus’ making it ‘unwatchable’ as shares nosedive.” Fox Business.  Danielle Wallace 
  2. Elon Musk Says “The Woke Mind Virus Is Making Netflix Unwatchable,” Piling On Embattled Streamer.” Deadline. Jill Goldsmith. April 20, 2022.
  3. Why Elon Musk believes ‘woke mind virus’ and ‘wokeness’ are threats to modern civilization.” USA Today. Jessica Guynn. April 21, 2022.
  4. “Elon Musk reaches deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion” NBC News. April 25th, 2022.
Julie Hambleton
Freelance Writer
Julie Hambleton has a BSc in Food and Nutrition from the Western University, Canada, is a former certified personal trainer and a competitive runner. Julie loves food, culture, and health, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others make positive changes and live healthier lives.
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