Fox News sent an ultimatum to its former star, Tucker Carlson after he released the first episode of his new show on Twitter. According to Fox, Carlson’s services are to be exclusive to Fox, and his new show breaches the terms of their contract. Fox’s general council, Bernard Gugar, says Tucker is “prohibited from rendering services of any type whatsoever, whether ‘over the internet via streaming or similar distribution, or other digital distribution whether now known or hereafter devised.'” Despite the threats from his former employer, Carlson’s team is undeterred, claiming any attempt from Fox to silence him would violate his first amendment rights. Tucker Carlson’s first episode of his new show, Tucker on Twitter, garnered about 80 million views in a few hours, proving the former Fox host is far from out of the spotlight.
By Solange Reyner; June 7, 2023
Fox News said former host Tucker Carlson breached his contract Tuesday when he released the first episode of his new show on Twitter, reported Axios.
“This evening we were made aware of Mr. Tucker Carlson’s appearance on Twitter in a video that lasted over 10 minutes,” Fox News general counsel Bernard Gugar said in a letter to Carlson’s lawyers.
“Pursuant to the terms of the Agreement, Mr. Carlson’s ‘services shall be completely exclusive to Fox,'” it continued, quoting Carlson’s contract.
Gugar also said Carlson was “prohibited from rendering services of any type whatsoever, whether ‘over the internet via streaming or similar distribution, or other digital distribution whether now known or hereafter devised.'”
Carlson’s legal team told Axios that any legal action by Fox would violate his First Amendment rights.
“Fox defends its very existence on freedom of speech grounds. Now they want to take Tucker Carlson’s right to speak freely away from him because he took to social media to share his thoughts on current events,” said Carlson’s lawyer, Bryan Freedman.
Carlson’s new show, “Tucker on Twitter,” garnered about 80 million views by 2 p.m. Wednesday.
The former Fox News host, in a roughly 10-minute video posted Tuesday and captioned “Ep. 1,” claimed that Ukraine was to blame for the destruction of a massive dam in Russian-occupied territory that caused widespread flooding.
The onetime top-rated talk show host on U.S. cable television said he hoped Twitter would be the “short-wave radio under the blankets” with “no gatekeepers.”
Fox News Media and Carlson, then its top-rated host, “agreed to part ways” in late April, less than a week after parent company Fox Corp. settled a defamation lawsuit for $787.5 million.
Photo: Gage Skidmore