Obama and Netflix have found the way to legitimize Fake News

Did Obama Learn the Ropes for his Netflix Job from Daughter Malia?

By —— Bio and Archives--March 13, 2018

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Did Obama Learn the Ropes for his Netflix Job from Daughter Malia?
Did former president Barack Obama learn the ropes to be a Netflix prime content producer from his 19-year-old daughter, Malia, who herself learned the ropes at disgraced Harvey Weinstein’s New York production company?

It certainly now looks that way.

Both Malia’s mother and father will be live streamed talking heads on Netflix following what the New York Times called “advanced negotiations” to produce a series of programs that would be exclusive to the company, which is said to be allocating $8 billion toward acquiring new and original content this year.


Now that the Obamas got the know-how for launching new careers,  count on seeing more of them now than when they were in the White House:

“Several people familiar with the Netflix discussions said that executives from Apple and Amazon, which have their own streaming services, have also expressed interest in talking with Mr. Obama about content deals.” (NYTimes, Mar. 9, 2018)

Malia interned for three months in 2017 at Weinstein’s New York production company, where she was actually very involved in the development of new projects, including reading and pitching scripts to the executives.

“Malia Obama, 19, landed an internship at the Weinstein Company right after her dad left office earlier this year, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Working in the New York City office, she was doing more than fetching coffee—TMZ reported that Malia Obama was “ensconced in the production/development department,” tasked with “reading through scripts and deciding which ones move on to Weinstein brass.” (NewsWeek, Oct. 9, 2017)

“Despite her age, Malia already has a fair amount of experience in the entertainment industry: she spent some of the summer of 2015 assisting crew members on the set of HBO’s Girls, and reportedly had a similar gig on the set of Halle Berry’s sci-fi drama Extant the previous year (where she “fetched coffee and got no special treatment,” at least according to the Daily Mail) .(Vanity Fair, Jan. 20, 2017)

Barack Obama was strangely silent when the Weinstein scandal first broke.  But after media reports about his having accepted financial contributions from the disgraced Hollywood mogul, issued a statement indicating he and wife Michelle were “disgusted” by him. (Fox, Oct. 10, 2017)

Obama has “seethed privately and publicly”

“When reached about the possibility of the Obamas joining the Netflix family, a Netflix spokesperson said the company has “no comment at this time.” (Mercury News, Mar. 9, 2018)

“According to the Times, the Obamas are considering several options for the content of their programs. Among the possibilities are inspirational stories, and conversations about topics that stood out during former President Obama’s two terms in office such as health care, immigration and climate change. Michelle Obama would also be involved in programs focusing on issues she supported during the Obamas’ White House years, such as childhood nutrition and ways to combat obesity.

“If the Obamas go through with the Netflix deal, it would be a stunning coup for the company, and could potentially change how former presidents interact with the country and remain involved in national affairs.

“Traditionally, most presidents keep a low profile, write their memoirs, rarely criticize their successors, set up foundations and libraries, and bring home big checks for giving speeches before business groups and international organizations.

“But according to the Times, Obama has “seethed privately and publicly” over how he believes conservative news organizations, in particular, have manipulated news coverage and the perception of his presidency and legacy since he left office, and suggested that he could use the Netflix platform to present his version of the nation’s affairs, and vision of where the country should go.”


Obama and Netflix have found the way to legitimize Fake News

Put another way, Obama and Netflix have found the way to legitimize Fake News.

“The former president has maintained a low profile since leaving office. He and his wife are each writing highly anticipated memoirs, for which they were reportedly paid more than $60 million. And Mr. Obama has been paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for speeches in the United States and around the world. The Obamas are rarely seen in public in Washington, where they still live. (NY Times)
“Mr. Obama has long expressed concerns about how the flow of information — and misinformation — has the power to shape public opinion. In the last several months, Mr. Obama has discussed with technology executives and wealthy investors the threats to American democracy from the manipulation of news.
“If you watch Fox News, you are living on a different planet than you are if you are listening to NPR,” Mr. Obama told David Letterman in an interview broadcast in January for the comedian’s first Netflix program. Last December, at a forum in New Delhi, Mr. Obama conceded that “If I watch Fox News, I wouldn’t vote for me. I would watch it and say, ‘Who is that guy?’”

“Evidence began to emerge while Mr. Obama was president that Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube were being used to spread false information about candidates and issues. Social media’s impact on society became even clearer last month, when the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, indicted 13 Russians and three companies that had used social media companies to undermine democracy in the United States and push voters to reject Hillary Clinton.

“As the election came to a close, Mr. Obama told The New Yorker that the new media landscape had made it possible for large swaths of the country to ignore facts.

“Everything is true and nothing is true,” he complained. He later personally scolded Facebook’s chief executive for saying it was “crazy” to think the social network influenced the election.”



Obamas are walking proof that getting ahead comes not from what you know but from who you know:

More than most, the Obamas are walking proof that getting ahead comes not from what you know but from who you know:

“Several of the technology and media worlds’ top executives have been close advisers and donors to Mr. Obama over the years, including John Doerr and Reid Hoffman, the Silicon Valley venture capitalists, and Jeffrey Katzenberg, the entertainment executive. (NY Times)

“But Mr. Obama has particularly close ties to Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer. Mr. Sarandos is married to Nicole A. Avant, an activist who served as Mr. Obama’s ambassador to the Bahamas. And Reed Hastings, the chief executive of Netflix, was close to Mr. Obama while he was president and an attendee at state dinners.”

“Mr. Obama’s approach is less of a direct challenge to the existing news establishment. But he is embracing the streaming services that have become a direct threat to the cable and network television infrastructure, especially among younger viewers.”

Meanwhile there can be little doubt that Malia Obama met Weinstein, a major Democratic donor, accused of three decades of sexual harassment and fired by his own company, through her parents.

Was Obama who entertained Weinstein at gala gatherings while he was president even then waiting to fill a gap in the entertainment industry?

It’s certainly a likely, if not provable, concept.


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Judi McLeod -- Bio and Archives | Comments

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Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years’ experience in the print media. A former Toronto Sun columnist, she also worked for the Kingston Whig Standard. Her work has appeared on Rush Limbaugh, Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com.

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