Me, after spending an evening watching FOX News in June of 2012:
I’d like to take a moment to discuss FOX’s gender-related hotness disparity.
For reasons that are not entirely clear, all women appearing on FOX shows seem to be required to be young, attractive, fake blondes that have that car-show model look. There are some exceptions, but those are the occasional young attractive ethnic car-show women and as such are allowed to simply forgo the fake-blonde. Men appearing on FOX, on the other hand, are allowed to look like Dick Morris. I’m really curious: to what extent is this an actual programming policy, and to what extent is it simply that whoever is in charge of these things has a thing for young, attractive, fake blondes that have that car-show model look? I assume it has to be the latter. I mean, you wouldn’t actually have a policy about something like that – right?
And this makes me wonder about the women that work at FOX: Does this ever creep them out? I’m sure they love their jobs, and can’t imagine any of them ever speaking in public about this. But it’s hard to believe there aren’t these tiny moments when they sometimes get home after a long day’s work, have a glass of wine, and unload on their husbands or boyfriends that the hiring guy keeps finding reasons to come around and talk to them in a way that makes them want to take a shower.
The Washington Post, last month:
Interviews with four of those women portray the 76-year-old television powerhouse as a man who could be routinely crude and inappropriate, ogling young women, commenting about their breasts and legs, and fostering a macho, insensitive culture. Three of the women were speaking about their allegations for the first time, including a 2002 Fox News intern who says Ailes grabbed her buttocks, and a Fox News employee who says Ailes touched her and tried to kiss her against her will at his office in 2004…
“Suddenly, he grabbed me and kissed me,” [a Fox employee] told The Washington Post. “I froze. I just didn’t know what to do. I think I had just gotten my first kiss from my boyfriend, so I didn’t know what to do. I just froze.”
The woman said Ailes told her: “I need you to be receptive. We only hire girls who are cooperative.”
“Generally, women accept that at Fox you are expected to wear skirts [and] dresses and that the makeup people are going to slather it on and make you look like a bimbo,” said a former frequent guest commentator. One time, the former commentator said, higher-ups at the network reprimanded makeup artists for putting her on-air without false eyelashes, even though she hated wearing them.
Fox has reached a $20 million settlement deal with Gretchen Carlson, the anchorwoman who sued Roger Ailes alleging harassment and retaliation in July.
The company also publicly apologized to Carlson in a highly unusual statement on Tuesday morning.
“We sincerely regret and apologize for the fact that Gretchen was not treated with the respect that she and all our colleagues deserve,” Fox said.
The eight-figure deal is likely to have consequences across corporate America.
In private, 21st Century Fox has also completed settlement deals with a “handful” of other women who accused Ailes of harassing behavior, a person briefed on the matter said Tuesday.