Speaking at Recode’s Code Conference, Hastings suggested that the fight can’t be won during a Trump presidency.
“I think Trump’s FCC is going to unwind the rules, no matter what anybody says,” said Hastings this week. “That’s going to happen, and then we get to see what’s going to come out of that.”
Netflix has previously expressed their opposition to rolling back internet regulations (including a public rebuke of Comcast in 2014 for their cap system), but at this stage the streaming colossus is scaling back their energy in the open internet fight. The Verge reports that Hastings still says Netflix will oppose changing regulations, but “it’s not our primary battle at this point.” Hastings had a rather frank explanation why it’s less of a priority for the company.
“It’s not narrowly important to us because we’re big enough to get the deals we want,” he explained.
Hastings offered that the battle is an issue where Netflix no longer will be doing any heavy lifting.
“We had to carry the water when we were growing up and we were small,” he said. “Other companies have to be on that leading edge.”
Where the GOP dominated FCC goes with their plans on internet regulations is still to be hammered out, but with Netflix stepping back it adds another level of scrutiny for what comes next.