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LA STOOL VS. TWITTER

Barstool Sports Founder Responds to Contract Controversy: ‘F*ck You, We’re Not Harvey Weinstein’

In light of the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment scandal, more and more women have come forward with their own stories of illicit behavior — and sports personality Elika Sadeghi this week published a media contract she found to be similarly inappropriate.

The former Fox Sports college football host posted the contract on Twitter, with the media outlet’s name redacted. However, people quickly found out this “not ok” contract was courtesy of the comedic blogging and podcasting powerhouse Barstool Sports.

The portion of the agreement Sadeghi took issue with is an “offensive speech” clause, which states:

“I further understand that because Company’s business requires a creative working environment, including exposure to offensive speech… I understand and acknowledge that as part of my job I may be exposed to speech and conduct that explicitly relates to sex as well as race, sexual orientation, gender, national origin, religion, disability and age…. I expressly agree and represent that I do not object to being exposed to such speech and conduct.”

In a series of tweets, Sadeghi explained why she found this contract problematic and why “recent events” made her choose now to leak the document that she never signed.

Her 16-part tweetstorm included other details on why she ultimately turned down the contract, but this “offensive speech” clause was what caused her to reject the job she had initially accepted. However, Barstool founder Dave Portnoy and CEO Erika Nardini responded to Sadeghi’s by denying her implication.

Portnoy released a lengthy video on Twitter in which he said that he was glad the two parties didn’t end up coming to an agreement because “it would have been a nightmare working with this girl.” Additionally, he called Sadeghi “the biggest fraud” as he believes she is attempting to unjustifiably insert herself into the Weinstein scandal for media attention.

As far as the clause in question, Portnoy defended the contract by explaining the outlet’s comedy and satire could be offensive to some, meaning that employees could be subjected to conversations and conduct they find inappropriate. While critics claimed the contract could be used to harass employees, Portnoy clarified that it was in place solely to cover the company from possible lawsuits over their brand of humor.

“[Sadeghi] said to us that she never had the feeling that we treated anyone with disrespect — ask the girls we have in the office, we have a ton of them. We don’t do that,” said Portnoy.

He continued his intense monologue by saying, “Fuck you for making us part of this story. We have nothing to do with this. We’re not Harvey Weinstein.”

Nardini, the Barstool CEO, also spoke out against Sadeghi by going off on a tweetstorm of her own.

[featured image via screengrab]

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