The media world is abuzz tonight over new details that have been leaked from a forthcoming biography on Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes.
The New York Times’ Julie Bosman and Bill Carter obtained a copy of New York magazine contributing editor Gabriel Sherman’s “The Loudest Voice in the Room.” Two of the episodes they detail from the book have created a stir.
Both of the incidents in question were denied by Fox News in statements. The first details an episode from the time when Ailes was an executive at CNBC.
From the Times:
A television producer, Randi Harrison, told Mr. Sherman that while negotiating her salary with Mr. Ailes at CNBC in the 1980s, he offered her an additional $US100 each week “if you agree to have sex with me whenever I want.”
Fox News said of the incident: “These charges are false. While we have not read the book, the only reality here is that Gabe was not provided any direct access to Roger Ailes and the book was never fact-checked with Fox News.”
The second incident was denied by both Fox News and a key subject involved. It details a confrontation between Ailes, at the time an executive at NBC, and David Zaslav, a fellow NBC executive. In one incident, Ailes allegedly shouted a vulgar, anti-Semitic slur at Zaslav.
Ailes, through a spokesman, specifically denied the incident to the Times. Zaslav also denied it happened, noting that he and Ailes are now friends.
Under Ailes’ leadership, Fox has grown into the most dominant cable-news brand in the U.S. Last year, Fox News drew more total viewers than its top-two competitors, MSNBC and CNN, combined.
“The Loudest Voice in the Room” has been in the works for more than two years, and it is expected to be controversial. Sherman did not interview Ailes for the book, although he says he interviewed 614 people. Ailes gave nearly unprecedented access to Zev Chafets for a different biography that was released last year.
Sherman’s book is out Jan. 21.
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