Who Owns Netflix?
Many people ask, “Who owns Netflix?” The answer is not obvious.
First, let’s think about what we mean by “ownership” in this context. In the free market, there are three types of entities: legal entities such as a corporation, state-chartered entities such as a county, and individuals. The third category is commonly referred to as the “public”.
First, a legal entity is the best known form of ownership. You can buy a house or lease office space through the legal entity known as a Limited Liability Company (LLC). The LLC gives the owner a legal shield to protect his property. However, the limited liability company has some disadvantages, such as high annual fees, limited liability, and limited tax liability.
Another type of entity is a governmental entity. These entities are like corporations, in that they grant corporate privileges. They also are called Governments. For example, if you own a small business, the corporation you own is a Government.
Individuals own individual property. An individual can have a mortgage against a piece of property, but the mortgage is usually structured with restrictions on who is allowed to participate in the mortgage refinancing process. However, unlike the governments, an individual usually has limited liability. Individuals generally do not use their home as collateral.
The greatest concentration of individuals is in the commonwealth states. These states are large and all have one government (commonwealth) controlling the local governmental units in each county. Each Commonwealth may operate its own courts, but all major settlements between individuals and Government are governed by Commonwealth law. Generally, to make a claim against any Commonwealth, an individual must go through a Commonwealth-administered court.
So, who owns Netflix? Clearly, this is a technical question. Let’s examine some of the major factors, and their implications.
First, ownership depends on where you live. If your home is in the Commonwealth of Virginia, you have real ownership in the Commonwealth of Virginia. You also have some direct interest in the Commonwealth of Virginia if you have a property or business in the Commonwealth.
Second, ownership is based on the “residence” doctrine, which holds that if the individual rights of ownership are only in the home, then the home is the personal property of the homeowner. Most homes are not real estate, so it does not matter how much someone wants to take for himself. This means that any claim to ownership is a matter of territorial fact and does not depend on any human rights.
Third, property is defined as “ownership” when an ownership right is conceded. Since anyone can surrender his claim to ownership, the government has recognized the fact that individuals are not the ultimate owners of anything. The government has established “residency” as the ultimate factor.
So, who owns Netflix? The answer is obvious, since it depends on where you live. On the other hand, it depends on who is interested in the property – that is, on whom the legal title has been delegated to.