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LAS VEGAS — On Monday, Netflix announced that it had signed a multimillion deal with former president Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama, and on Wednesday, Obama spoke publicly about the deal for the first time.
Obama was speaking at a tech conference in Las Vegas hosted by identity security company Okta when he was asked about the deal.
The article goes on to state the following:
Obama explained that the Netflix deal was going to be focused on telling people’s stories. He said he hopes these stories will help people see and better understand one another and ultimately help us move past the divisive political discourse that has mired Washington for so long.
“I would not have been president had I not learned very early on in my professional career the importance of stories,” Obama told a standing-room-only crowd of thousands of people.
He recounted his first job out of college as a community organizer, helping bring various factions together to solve local problems from crime to underfunded schools. An older, experienced community organizer told the young Obama at the time that before he started to suggest solutions to problems, he should spend a month talking to people and hearing their stories.
“We want to tell stories,” he said, “This [Netflix deal] becomes a platform. We are interested in lifting people up and identifying people doing amazing work.”
Business Insider reported that Obama said there are “competing narratives” globally, as the world deals with issues caused by globalization or migration, and said there are” two ways to respond. Humans have historically responded by feeling threatened. “We go tribal. We go ethnic. we pull in, we push away,” he said.”
Obama said America has made progress on racism and gender equality “in fits and starts,” and implied an indirect slam on the new administration.
“And now there’s a clash in those two ways of seeing the world,” he said, without naming any names or current political figures.
“I’m putting my money on the latter way,” Obama told the conference crowd. “That’s what we hope to be a voice to, through Netflix and through my foundation, where we’re identifying and training the next generation of leaders here in the United States and around the world. So they can start sharing their stories and cooperating.”
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In a separate report by The Hill on Obama’s speech at the Okta conference, the following was noted:
Former President Obama jokingly bragged about his administration at a tech conference in Las Vegas, saying he did not have scandals during his presidency.
“And there wasn’t any malicious intent, which is why I didn’t have scandals, which seems like it shouldn’t be something you brag about,” Obama joked at the conference hosted by identity security company Okta on Wednesday. “But actually, if you look at the history of the modern presidency, coming out of the modern presidency without anybody going to jail is really good. It’s a big deal.”
— Okta (@okta) May 24, 2018
Huge turnout tonight to hear from @BarackObama. @okta’s execs said Obama was chosen as a keynote speaker because of his experience affecting change. They won’t say how much he was paid to speak. pic.twitter.com/UhndhpcLh5
— Ramona Giwargis (@RamonaGiwargis) May 24, 2018