OG Media co-founder Carlos Watson resigns from NPR board
OG Media co-founder and chief executive Carlos Watson has resigned from NPR’s board, the public radio organization said on Friday.
“Mr. Watson’s resignation is effective today,” said NPR’s chairman of the board, LaFontaine E. Oliver said in a statement.
The resignation came five days after The New York Times published an article by media columnist Ben Smith that raised questions about Ozzy’s business practices, including detailing an incident in which an executive apparently A YouTube executive was impersonated as Ozzy was trying to raise money.
Mr Watson joined NPR’s board in 2016 and was elected to a three-year term in September. As NPR reports, the board’s steering committee was due to meet on Friday to discuss Mr Watson’s position.
On Thursday, The Times published another Mr Smith report that, last year, Ozzy had hired a team to produce a talk show for cable network A&E – “The Carlos Watson Show”, which Hosted by Mr Watson. Guests were told that the show would air on A&E, and the show’s executive producer was told that it would premiere in prime time in August 2020.
Problem: A&E said there was no such deal. The executive producer resigned after finding out, writing to the leaders of Ozzy: “You’re playing a dangerous game with the truth. Offering guests an A&E show when we don’t have one to offer.” The consequences are devastating for Ozzy and me.”
Here’s what we know about the turmoil in Oz.
Mr Watson said the show was being produced for A&E, then YouTube Originals. Didn’t happen either.
When the executive producer, Brad Bessie, resigned, he told the show’s staff that the program was not actually being shown on A&E. Mr Watson then told People on a Zoom call that “The Carlos Watson Show” would eventually end on A&E, according to Mr Basie and another person on the call. Until that time, Mr Watson said, the show will appear on YouTube as part of its YouTube Originals, a slate of programming created by professional studios and paid for by YouTube.
“The Carlos Watson Show” appeared on Ozy.com and YouTube, though not as a YouTube original. A YouTube official confirmed that the show was not a YouTube original. Mr Watson and spokesmen for OG did not respond to requests for comment.
read more About the proposed A&E show →
The chairman of the board of OG stepped down.
Mark Larry, the chairman of Ozzy’s board and a hedge fund manager who also co-owns the Milwaukee Bucks, resigned on Thursday, four days after the Times reported that someone at Ozzy had taken over a YouTube executive during a conference call. was impersonated. Goldman Sachs with bankers while the company was trying to raise $40 million.
“I believe that moving forward Ozzie needs experience in areas such as crisis management and investigation, where I do not have specialized expertise,” Mr Larry said in an emailed statement. “For this reason, I have resigned from the board of the company. I remain an investor in the company and wish it all the best for the future.”
read more About Mr. Larry’s resignation →
Ozzy lost a star anchor.
Katy Kay, who quit her job as a BBC anchor and correspondent to join Ozzy in June, said on Wednesday that she had resigned. “The allegations made in The New York Times, which surprised me, are serious and deeply disturbing, and I had no choice but to terminate my relationship with the company.”
read more About the resignation of Ms. K. →
It also lost a major investor.
According to an advisor to SV Angel, SV Angel, led by venture capitalist Ron Conway, informed OG on Tuesday that it was giving up shares it acquired in the company in 2012. (Axios was the first to report that SV Angel was abandoning its shares.)
The board is investigating.
The board said Tuesday that it has hired Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, a large international firm headquartered in New York, to review Ozzy’s business activities. The board also said it had asked Ozzie’s chief operating officer Sameer Rao, and the person who apparently impersonated the YouTube executive, “to take a leave of absence pending the results of the investigation.”
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