PTC to Netflix Investors: Use Your Influence to Force Netflix to Stop Sexualizing Children

Written by PTC | Published January 28, 2020

LOS ANGELES (January 21, 2020) – In an open letter to Netflix shareholders, the Parents Television Council is urging them to use their influence to force Netflix to stop sexualizing children in its programming.

“Netflix just reported domestic subscriber numbers that failed to meet Wall Street’s expectations, and we believe we know one reason why. The company continues to alienate families – a key growth demographic - with its programming that sexualizes children. It doesn’t have to be this way. We are urging Netflix investors to use their enormous influence to push back on the streaming platform for doing so,” said PTC President Tim Winter.

Mr. Winter has written an Open Letter to Netflix Investors, the text of which is as follows:

Netflix is irreparably damaging its brand, its reputation, and its shareholder value through its distribution of sexualized depictions of children in its original programming.

We have repeatedly warned Netflix’s CEO Reid Hastings, as well as Netflix’s Board of Directors about the damage they are doing to their brand by alienating what is by far the most stable and profitable segment of streaming video consumers: family audiences.

As shareholders, you deserve to know that most of those warnings have been dismissively ignored. And even while Netflix is losing much of its most-watched and most-popular programming to competing streaming platforms, Netflix is doubling-down on the production and distribution of offensive content that will only serve to further drive family audiences away.

Key examples: Netflix offers 13 Reasons Why, a teen-targeted drama that romanticizes teen suicide and has been linked to a 30% spike in youth suicide; Desire, a film that depicts a nine-year-old girl sexually stimulating herself to climax; Insatiable, a show depicting children viciously fat-shaming other children; and Big Mouth, a graphic cartoon grotesquely sexualizing pubescent children. As such, parents simply cannot rely on Netflix as a trusted source of streaming video entertainment for their families.

Netflix has even upped the ante with Sex Education, a UK-produced, teen-targeted series that features frank discussions about sex, explicit depictions of sex and nudity, and something more that even HBO and Cinemax rarely display: male genitalia.

This, on a teen-targeted series, depicting teenaged characters.

We think that some of this content could be a violation of child pornography laws. That’s why we are also calling on U.S. Attorney General William Barr to investigate whether federal laws regarding child sex, indecency and human trafficking have been violated.

Our members, parents, grandparents and other concerned citizens are asking you, personally, as a Netflix investor to use your influence – such as a shareholder resolution, or other financial leverage – to force Netflix to stop sexualizing children. We call on your leadership not only for the sake of the child actors who are being exploited in the name of entertainment; not only for the protection of the children to whom these programs are being marketed; but in fact for the protection of all children from the tragic, proven, real-life consequences that comes from the sexualization of children in the media.


Timothy F. Winter, President

Parents Television Council

The Parents Television Council® ( is a non-partisan education organization advocating responsible entertainment. It was founded in 1995 to ensure that children are not constantly assaulted by sex, violence and profanity on television and in other media.

This national grassroots organization has more than 1.4 million members, and works with television producers, broadcasters, networks and sponsors in an effort to stem the flow of harmful and negative messages targeted to children.

The PTC™ also works with elected and appointed government officials to enforce broadcast decency standards. Most importantly, the PTC produces critical research and publications documenting the dramatic increase in sex, violence and profanity in entertainment. This information is provided free of charge so parents can make informed viewing choices for their own families.

Visit the new PTC Watchdog Blog at

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To speak with a representative from the Parents Television Council, please contact Kelly Oliver at (703) 307-9404 or email at

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