A woman who says she was an executive at The Weinstein Company called NBC’s memo regarding the network’s decision not to run Ronan Farrow’s reporting on Harvey Weinstein “the opposite of honest and direct.”
NBC News Chairman Andy Lack recently released a 10-page memo, complete with a cover letter and table of contents, addressing allegations by former NBC News producer Rich McHugh. Lack’s memo fought back against allegations that NBC News tried to stymie Farrow’s Weinstein reporting.
Since the memo was released, Farrow said it contains “numerous false or misleading statements.” McHugh has said that he wasn’t interviewed for NBC’s report, and Weinstein accuser Emily Nestor also contradicted Lack’s version of events.
NBC’s memo refers to “Former Executive A (female),” and said the anonymous woman told NBC she was aware of late-night meetings Weinstein would have. The former executive believed the meetings were really setups to lure in women for sex.
“Her account was based on suspicion alone, and therefore not reportable without additional details or sources,” Lack wrote, attempting to discredit the anonymous former executive to help clear NBC of allegations it killed the Weinstein story.
But a woman who claims she is the executive referenced in the memo has taken to Twitter, slamming NBC and offering her side of the story. The @abbylynnex account is unverified, but a source close to the situation has confirmed that the tweet was sent by the woman anonymously mentioned in Lack’s letter. Farrow has retweeted the woman’s statement.
“I feel like it is my duty to go on the record to clarify what I feel like is a misleading and incorrect amount of my testimony as portrayed by NBC. I started talking to Ronan Farrow in June of 2017, off-the-record, detailing my knowledge of how things worked at the company in relation to HW meeting and arranging general meetings with women. Meetings, we now know, he used to sexually harass and assault women,” the woman wrote under the Twitter name Abby Ex.
She continued: “While I didn’t know exactly what happened in those meetings, I knew how they were arranged and the dubious nature of being held in hotel rooms and bars late at night and occasionally using (only FEMALE) colleagues to start the meeting and then asking to leave so he could be alone with these women.”
The statement contradicts Lack's claims, which she calls “factually incorrect.” She said Weinstein asked her to join the meetings on numerous occasions, but she refused.
“I was a witness to them, and in fact, was a first-hand witness to physical and verbal abuse at his hands as well, all of which Ronan has on camera from my interview,” she wrote. “My entire experience with both Ronan F,arrow and Rich McHugh was honest and direct.”
She said the now-former NBC journalists protected her with “integrity” as she exposed herself to “serious financial and legal repercussions” and NBC’s memo “feels like the opposite of honest and direct.”
The woman concluded the memo by saying, “I want to support those who ARE honest and direct in reporting right now.”
After NBC refused to air Farrow’s reporting on Weinstein, he took his work to the prestigious New Yorker, where it won a Pulitzer Prize and helped launch the #MeToo movement. Farrow plans to tell his side of the story in an upcoming book.