UPDATE: News Corp. may be backing away from its firing. HuffPo says and we’ve confirmed that Friedman will be meeting with News Corp execs Monday.
EARLIER: On Friday, Fox News entertainment columnist Roger Friedman watched and reviewed one of the pirated copies of Wolverine floating around the Web. He gave the film a good review but he also raved about the ease of pirating movies:
“I did find the whole top 10 [movies in theatres], plus TV shows, commercials, videos, everything, all streaming away. It took really less than seconds to start playing it all right onto my computer. I could have downloaded all of it but really, who has the time or the room? Later tonight I may finally catch up with Paul Rudd in I Love You, Man. It’s so much easier than going out in the rain!”
Bad move! His post was swiftly taken down by News Corp, who condemned the post’s promotion of piracy as did Fox News.
News Corp issued a statement obtained by Nikki Finke Saturday night saying, “Roger Friedman’s views in no way reflect the views of News Corporation. We, along with 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, have been a consistent leader in the fight against piracy and have zero tolerance for any action that encourages and promotes piracy. Once we learned of Roger Friedman’s post we asked Fox News to remove it, which they did immediately.”
Nikki reported Saturday night that Friedman had been fired, but that was based on one anonymous source and it wasn’t confirmed by News Corp, Fox News or Friedman himself. Today, however, News Corp amended its above statement to read, “When we advised Fox News of the facts they took immediate action, removed the post, and promptly terminated Mr. Friedman.”
Meanwhile, Friedman denies that he’s been fired, telling ABC News, “There was no action taken against me.” And Fox News issued the following non-committal statement to ABC News: “This is an internal matter that we’re not prepared to discuss at this time.”
Well, when Fox News and Friedman are prepared to talk about what happened, we’ll be interested to hear what they have to say.
Photo from Flickr user Christopher Stumm
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