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article imageCEO of Netflix jumps on-board with Facebook

By Abigail Prendergast     Jun 25, 2011 in Technology
Palo Alto - Neflix CEO Reed Hastings has just been brought onto the Facebook board. Will the networking giant be able to further its status as the top site for friends and connections? Will the movie rental company be able to successfully integrate?
The insanely popular social networking site known as Facebook just got another powerful figure into its corner. A press release issued by the website on 23 June stated that Reed Hastings - chief executive officer of Netflix - has joined the ranks of Facebook's board of directors.
"Reed is an entrepreneur and technologist who has led Netflix to transform the way people watch movies and TV," Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in the official release. "He has built a culture of continuous rapid innovation, something we share and work hard for every day."
Hastings is not the first person with really deep pockets and great influence to join the board though. He has been recruited to a team that includes five other members: Peter Thiel (Clarium Capital), Jim Breyer (Accel Partners), Mark Andreessen (Andreessen Horowitz), Donald E. Graham (chairman of Washington Post) and of course Mark Zuckerberg himself.
Hastings said that "Facebook is propelling a fundamental change in how people connect with each other and share all kinds of content," in the announcement. "I'm looking forward to working with Mark and the rest of the board to help Facebook take advantage of all the opportunities ahead."
Closing in on 700 million users around the world, Facebook has proven itself to be a powerful tool in terms of finding and connecting with friends albeit suffering millions of accounts being deleted over the past few months. Netflix has more than 23 million people subscribing to its service and the numbers continue to grow. So with Facebook eyeballing a more media-oriented structure and Netflix wanting to become more social, adding Hastings appears to be a great idea.
However, Facebook has done the online media dance before. In one case teaming up with Warner Brothers in order to offer digital rentals of films such as "Inception" and "The Dark Knight" this past March. In addition, the colossal social network plans on collaborating efforts with Spotify to create an element that would allow users to check out what music their buddies are listening to, as well as hear it with them.
Apparently Netflix isn't any less anxious to hop onto the social band-wagon as Hastings responded that the service "should be" within that vein to an inquiry by AllThingsD. He made the statement while looking back at the tremendous flop that was Netflix Friends.
"People want to use Facebook," Hastings stated. "We're working now to figure out the right integration with Facebook with proper privacy controls. Think of it as a five year plan, at least, to integrate into Facebook..."
More about Facebook, Netflix, Mark Zuckerberg, Reed hastings
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