Katie Couric says Matt Lauer wasn't the only NBC exec with a button under his desk to close the door

Katie Couric said many revelations have come about in the "painful time" since Matt Lauer was fired from NBC for alleged sexual assault and harassment. One point, however, she said has been misrepresented. The infamous button under Lauer's desk that he reportedly used to close his door was commonplace at NBC, she revealed.

Appearing on “The Wendy Williams Show,” Couric said: “I think a lot of stuff gets misreported and gets blown out of proportion… I don’t know what was happening but a lot of NBC executives have those buttons that open and close doors,” Couric told host Williams.

Williams replied, “Oh really?” with a shocked face.

Katie Couric (L) stands with her co-host Matt Lauer in the outside portion of the "Today" set in New York's Rockefeller Plaza, May 31, 2006.

Katie Couric said it's been a "painful time" since Matt Lauer was fired from NBC for alleged sexual misconduct.  (Reuters)

“Yeah, I mean it was really just a privacy thing, it wasn’t one of those…” Couric said before Williams attempted to shush her for “saying a lot.”

Couric insisted she believed it was an “executive perk” and not a “nefarious thing.” She added that she didn’t have one of those buttons during her time at the network.


Variety reported in November 2017 that Lauer used the button under his desk for privacy and allowed the then-host to lock his office door without getting up. Lauer was fired on Nov. 29 after NBC received “a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace” by the former host.

Other women later came forward with one even accusing Lauer of sexually assaulting her in his office until she passed out. Another said he sent her a sex toy with a crude note.

Couric also said Tuesday she didn’t know the “full extent” of Lauer’s alleged sexual misconduct.

In this Jan. 11, 2018 file photo, Katie Couric poses in the press room at the 23rd annual Critics' Choice Awards in Santa Monica, Calif.  NBC is bringing back Katie Couric to co-host the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics next month. She will be co-host with Mike Tirico, who is replacing Bob Costas as prime-time host of the games. The ceremony will take place in South Korea on Feb. 9.

Katie Couric said "a lot of NBC executives" had the infamous button that Matt Lauer was reportedly using in his office.  (AP)

“Well, you know, it’s been a very painful time for a lot of people who worked with Matt, knew him, and care about him, who never witnessed this behavior that is now obviously being talked about,” Couric said. “I don’t know the full extent of all these things that happened. I can only talk about my personal experience and I was always treated respectfully and appropriately.”

When asked if she believed Lauer could make a comeback, she replied: “That’s really not for me to say, Wendy."

She added, “I think that depends on the path he chooses, and how he decides to handle what has happened and the full extent of what has happened is eventually revealed."

Katherine Lam is a breaking and trending news digital producer for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @bykatherinelam