It took firing Matt Lauer for others to admit they knew about ‘evil, frightening stuff’

Published: Thursday, November 30, 2017 @ 8:07 PM

What You Need to Know: Matt Lauer

On the morning of Wednesday, Nov. 29, news broke that longtime “Today” show anchor Matt Lauer had been fired from NBC following complaints of “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”

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NBC News chairman Andrew Lack sent a memo to “TODAY” staff in the early hours of Wednesday morning saying Lauer was terminated following a complaint by a colleague. In the memo, Lack wrote that Lauer’s behavior “represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standard. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment. While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.”

Now that the allegations against Lauer are public knowledge, people within the world of journalism and news media are coming out of the woodwork and spilling the beans on what they knew about it — and it would appear that his alleged proclivities were an open secret.

Yashar Ali, a reporter who writes for The Huffington Post and New York Magazine, wrote on Twitter that he and others knew about Lauer’s alleged sexual misconduct long before it became known to the public.

>> Related: Matt Lauer responds to sexual misconduct allegations

“I, and other reporters, have been aware of several women who have come forward privately in the past few months,” Ali wrote. “[E]ven before Weinstein. They weren’t willing to go public though…they were terrified of Matt.”

>> Related: Here’s what to do if you are sexually harassed at work

“Matt Lauer put the fear of god into these women,” Ali said in a follow-up tweet. “He had relationships with reporters outside NBC that he cultivated just for this purpose. They knew that.”

In a third tweet on the issue of how much he and others knew about Lauer’s behavior, Ali wrote “Lauer is among the worst I’ve heard about. Not in terms of the kind of misconduct but the way in which he manipulated these women into silence. It’s evil, frightening stuff.”

>> Related: Garrison Keillor accused of inappropriate behavior, fired by Minnesota Public Radio

The New York Bureau Chief for Variety, Ramin Setoodeh, also chimed in on the subject of who knew what and when by admitting that he and another reporter had been working on a story about “serious sexual harassment allegations against Lauer.”

>> Related: Former ‘Today’ co-host Natalie Morales ‘shocked’ over Matt Lauer's firing

Matt Lauer was a veteran of NBC and “TODAY,” where he worked for more than 20 years. Lauer was reportedly one of the highest paid talents on the show, with an annual contract worth around $25 million, according to the Huffington Post.

In the beginning of the first post-Lauer “TODAY” broadcast, Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb addressed Lauer’s absence.

“We just learned this moments ago. Just this morning. As I am sure you can imagine, we are devastated and we are still processing all of this,” Guthrie started the broadcast after reading the official statement given by Lack.

>> Related: 5 things to know about Matt Lauer

“I’m sure we will be learning more details as the hours and days come. We promise we will share that with you. All we can say is we are heartbroken. I am heartbroken for Matt. He is my dear, dear friend and my partner and he is beloved by many people here. And, I am heartbroken for the brave colleague who came forward to tell her story and any women who have their own stories to tell,” Guthrie said.

>> Related: Matt Lauer firing has people wondering what Tamron Hall, Ann Curry are up to

Lauer’s dismissal comes just a week after Charlie Rose was fired by CBS News following similar accusations.

This Nov. 16, 2017 photo released by NBC shows Matt Lauer during a broadcast of the "Today," show in New York. NBC News fired the longtime host for "inappropriate sexual behavior." Lauer's co-host Savannah Guthrie made the announcement at the top of Wednesday's "Today" show. (Zach Pagano/AP)

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Quiz: How much do you know about Michael Jackson? 

Published: Monday, June 25, 2018 @ 10:18 AM
Updated: Monday, June 25, 2018 @ 10:18 AM

It’s been nine years since the sudden death of Michael Jackson, and his adoring legion of fans, collaborators and family have honored the King of Pop with tributes, music and films ever since his death on June 25, 2009.

»RELATED: Michael Jackson musical being developed for Broadway

In his 50 years on earth, Jackson accomplished such feats as producing the best-selling album of all time, “Thriller,” and revolutionizing pop music with his chart-topping music, signature dance moves and music videos, with his iconic video “Thriller” becoming the first music video by a black artist to receive heavy rotation on MTV.

The music and story behind Jackson’s life has been entrenched in pop culture and studied by not only his fans but the general public.

However, beyond the infamous scandals and legendary music, there are some interesting, little-known facts that only Jackson’s devoted fans would know.

Take the quiz below to see just how much you know about the King of Pop.

RELATED: Michael Jackson’s ‘Off the Wall’ will be reissued with Spike Lee documentary

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Joe Jackson tweets after reports of terminal cancer diagnosis: ‘the sun sets when the time comes’

Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 12:42 PM
Updated: Sunday, June 24, 2018 @ 6:01 PM

What You Need to Know: Joe Jackson

UPDATE June 24:

After reports emerged that Joe Jackson had cancer and not much longer to live, the Jackson family patriarch appears to have commented on the matter himself.

“I have seen more sunsets than I have left to see,” he tweeted Sunday with a photo of himself against a sunset. “The sun rises when the time comes and whether you like it or not the sun sets when the time comes.”

ORIGINAL STORY, June 22:

Joe Jackson, the patriarch of the Jackson family, doesn’t have much longer to live, according to one of his sons, Jermaine Jackson.

According to the Daily Mail, Joe Jackson, 88, has an “undisclosed terminal illness” and his family members alleged that his handlers are not allowing them to see him. TMZ reported that he is in a hospital with terminal cancer.

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“No one knew what was going on -- we shouldn’t have to beg, plead, and argue to see our own father, especially at a time like this,” Jermaine Jackson told the Daily Mail. “We have been hurting. We were not being told where he was and couldn’t get the full picture. Even from the doctor. My mother was worried sick.”

Jermaine Jackson said family members just want to be near their patriarch during this time.

“He’s very very frail. He doesn’t have long. The family needs to be by his bedside -- that’s our only intention in his final days,” he said.

Reports say Joe Jackson, the patriarch of the Jackson family, is terminally ill and does not have much longer to live. (Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images for BET)(Leon Bennett/Getty Images for BET)

According to the Daily Mail, Jackson family matriarch Katherine, her daughters Rebbie and Joh'Vonnie and Rebbie’s daughter Yashi Brown were able to visit Joe Jackson in Las Vegas Tuesday. TMZ reported that Katherine Jackson and some children and grandchildren were able to come by for a hospital visit. It is not clear from the Daily Mail’s report if family members visited Joe Jackson at his Las Vegas home, at the hospital or both.

The British tabloid claims that, according to a source close to Janet Jackson, she has also been denied access to her father.

No other members of the Jackson family have publicly commented on the reports.

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Actress Brigitte Nielsen delivers 5th child, a daughter, at age 54

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 5:22 PM

Getting to Know Brigitte Nielsen

Actress Brigitte Nielsen has a new baby, delivering her fifth child, a daughter, on Friday in Los Angeles, according to People magazine.

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Nielsen, 54, announced her pregnancy last month on social media. The  baby, named Frida, is the first child for her husband Mattia Dessi.

you'll be a great papà ❤️ Ti amo 💋 #fathersday #daddy #love #family

A post shared by Brigitte Nielsen (@realbrigittenielsen) on

“We are overjoyed to welcome our beautiful daughter into our lives,” the couple told People. “It’s been a long road, and so worth it. We’ve never been more in love.”

Related: Actress Brigitte Nielsen, 54, reveals fifth pregnancy in Instagram posts

People reported the baby weighed in at 5 pounds, 9 ounces.

The star of “Red Sonja” and “Beverly Hills Cop II” has been married four times before and has four sons. The oldest is 34.

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Actress Brigitte Nielsen, 54, reveals fifth pregnancy in Instagram posts

Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2018 @ 3:57 PM

Getting to Know Brigitte Nielsen

Danish actress, model and reality TV personality Brigitte Nielsen is reportedly pregnant with her fifth child.

Entertainment Tonight reported that the 54-year-old known for her roles in “Beverly Hills Cop II” and “Red Sonja” revealed the news in the form of an Instagram post Sunday. She followed up with another post Wednesday. In each, she wears a white top and cradles what appears to be a sizable bump. 

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“Family getting larger,” Nielsen captioned the Sunday photo post.

“Happy time (heart emoji) positive vibes,” she captioned the follow-up image. Both were also posted on Nielsen’s Twitter page.

Nielsen has been married to Italian TV producer Mattia Dessì since 2006. ET reported that she has four adult sons from previous relationships. Nielsen’s son, Julian Winding, 34, is from her marriage to Kasper Winding, which lasted from 1983 to 1984. She had Killian Marcus Nielsen, 28, from her relationship with Mark Gastineau, and her sons Douglas Aaron Meyer, 25, and Raoul Ayrton Meyer Jr., 23, are from her marriage to Raoul Meyer, which lasted from 1993 to 2005.

Nielsen’s most notable romantic relationships come from her two-year marriage to Sylvester Stallone and her reality TV romance with rapper Flavor Flav after the two met on VH1’s “The Surreal Life.”

Other than posting the photos, Nielsen hasn’t commented on her pregnancy. She only liked a reply to her May 27 post that said, “Congratulations.” She responded to the tweet with a kissing face emoji.

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