Allegations about sexual misbehavior behind the scenes at NBC continue to surface with this week’s publication of Ronan Farrow’s new book “Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators.”
Yahoo News reports that Farrow claims in the book that “Matt Lauer exhibited inappropriate workplace behavior years before he was fired for alleged sexual misconduct and accused of raping colleague Brooke Nevils.”
In the book, “an unnamed former on-air personality at NBC accuses Lauer, 61, and a senior executive of making unwanted advances toward her before her departure in 2012.”
The woman is quoted in the book telling Farrow: “I was like a hanging piece of meat. I would walk into work with a knot in my stomach. I would come home and cry.”
Yahoo adds: “According to colleagues who worked with the woman, Lauer and the executive would reportedly make ‘lewd remarks’ about the woman ‘over open mics’ during broadcasts. She also showed several colleagues messages from Lauer and the executives that she believed were ‘propositions.’”
After she turned down the men’s advances, she says in the book, “I got punished. … My career took a nosedive.” She believes she received fewer assignments after she rejected the men.
“The woman says she did not make a formal report with the Human Resources department because she feared ‘further harm to her career,’ the book explains,” Yahoo reports. “However, she did begin openly telling her colleagues about what was happening.”
Both she and the executive reportedly signed non-disclosure agreements upon her exit in 2012.
NBC News President Noah Oppenheim addressed the woman’s allegations in a detailed memo he sent to staffers Monday.
Yahoo quotes Oppenheim saying in the memo: “Farrow says this individual received inappropriate messages from Lauer, and showed them to ‘colleagues,’ not management, made no report, and we’ve found no record of one. She signed a completely standard separation agreement, including a routine confidentiality provision that was in her original employment contract. Again, that provision was designed to protect proprietary company information, not prevent an employee from reporting misconduct, nor has it ever been used that way.”