Many people feel that top media executives can get away with virtually anything due to their professional station. For one NBC official, this is not the case.
On Tuesday, NBC News fired their senior vice president of booking for news and entertainment, Matt Zimmerman. He was fired after an investigation into whether or not he was taking part in sexual harassment at work, according to The Washington Free Beacon. Zimmerman is only one of many famous individuals to get fired after being called out for sexual misconduct.
An NBC spokesperson released a statement following his termination. It was not as specific as many would have liked, but it revealed some details of what happened.
“We have recently learned that Matt Zimmerman engaged in inappropriate conduct with more than one woman at NBC, which violated company policy. As a result, he has been dismissed,” the statement said.
NBC News has experienced a chain of issues recently. Back in October, a political analyst from MSNBC and NBC, Mark Halperin, was suspended. The claims were the same as those again Zimmerman: he allegedly took part in sexual harassment at work.
Zimmerman was with the company for 13 years total. He initially joined the company as a low-level booker in 2004.
Claims of sexual harassment have emerged at a startling rate lately. Harvey Weinstein, comedian Louis C.K., Brett Ratner, and more were all accused of harassment in the past two months. Interestingly, their roles span many different facets of today’s entertainment, comedy, movies, and now even TV shows.
The woman who came forward with allegations about Zimmerman has yet to be named. However, it was reported by The Los Angeles Times that one woman reported to NBC’s human resources department to say that her career saw damage because of a “relationship” with Zimmerman.
Zimmerman worked with the Today show on NBC until 2014. He was promoted to executive vice president, which put him in charge of booking guests within the news division. He had plenty of contact with people within and outside of the company.
His position provided him the opportunity to commit this horrible crime. Although the details of these incidents aren’t clear, Zimmerman was in a position of constantly seeking out and speaking with guests. It would’ve been easy to utilize the position to make booking deals in exchange for sexual favors — although that is pure speculation at this point.
Accusations of sexual harassment are, alarmingly, becoming commonplace. Do you believe sexual harassment is at an epidemic high?
Sexual misconduct is disgusting and unacceptable, no matter who perpetrates it. If Zimmerman is guilty of the allegations, he should be held accountable. This behavior is just as unacceptable in a news industry as it is elsewhere.
Victims of unwanted sexual incidents continue to speak out, revealing that celebrities and those in powerful positions are no exception in perpetrating sexual harassment. An “awakening” has seemed to occur, with more victims coming forward to reveal the truth. Zimmerman has not publicly made an announcement on the issue since his termination.