Facing Down the Network That Protected Harvey Weinstein

It takes more than a determined reporter to win against the aggressive flacks and lawyers who work for powerful executives.

Comments: 194

  1. Wow, Mr. Rutenberg. Thank you for this most informative article. Very scary to see how power really works in the entertainment world. This makes it all the more amazing that so many brave woman did come forward. I can only imagine all the silent woman still out there.

  2. I think it is better to say:

    Very scary to see how power really works in the world.

    Especially politics which is the concern of must of us, people.

  3. Brave? After all these years? I would't call waiting decades brave. The victims should have come forward and help prevent this instead they stood on stage next to him took the glory. If this was a few women I would understand but the fact time and time again these women followed the same path is amazing. Harvey knew this. He knew these women would not bravely come forward which allowed him to continue this. I can understand a few women but this many.

  4. Let's not forget the example of Arnold Schwarzenegger. He faced serious allegations of sexual misconduct while he was running for governor in California, and claimed he would answer them after the election. When he was elected anyway, he said the allegations were old news and would not talk about them. To its shame, the media let him get away with it.

  5. So many people have asked: Why didn't these women speak up or go to authorities immediately? The structures that enable this type of ongoing and abhorrent behavior are formidable. It takes great courage and often time for healing for women to come forward against the powers-that-be. I applaud them.

  6. With no disrespect intended, it takes great courage and time to heal for /anyone/ to challenge institutional power. I know many incredibly brave and resolute individuals, many of whom happen to be women, who stood up and met that challenge when faced with it. The Weinstein accusers chose to accept the cash settlements offered and to remain silent, in exchange for the promise of celebrity. These women were not minors, and I do not believe there is a sane adult anywhere outside of Hollywood or TriBeCa who has ever believed that the movie biz is anything other than a protection racket run by narcisstic sleazebags and their retinues of sycophantic nodding-head yes-men (and women, etc.) Laying all the blame on the “enabling structure” of (male) power turns the women in question into passive objects. Most victims of narcissistic aggression aren’t offered an incentive to remain silent, and many face consequences far more dire than banishment from the A-list. These women were given that choice, and they chose silence and self-interest over solidarity and resistance. Complicit? Perhaps. Enabling? Absolutely.

  7. The reason the story did not come out sooner is the the District Attorney, with a staff prepared to prosecute chose not to press charges in the case against Weinstein in 2015.

    This is the same District Attorney who recently refused to press charges against Donald Trump, Jr. and his sister Ivanka for fraud involving Trump Soho. Again, the DA did not follow the wishes of his prosecutors, who again had over-whelming evidence to press the case.

    In the Trump "children" case, the DA sent back a campaign contribution of $25,000 from Donald J. Trump's lawyer, prior to making his decision. Six months later he received a contribution of $50,000.

    I don't know if Weinstein made a contribution, but I know justice has not been served by this DA.

  8. Same DA about to run for re-election. Time to clean that house - any good challengers should go for Vance's jugular, strike now while memory is fresh.

  9. The contribution was made by Weinstein's lawyer, David Bois, six months after the decision to not prosecute. It was $10,000.

  10. Since there's audio-taped evidence, I wonder if Cyrus Vance Jr. would reconsider charging Weinstein, and what the statute of limitations is...

  11. Thank you to those who stood up to challenge.

  12. The "individual" version of too big to fail.

  13. Spot on!

  14. Journalism today is more important then ever. Thank you NYT for your excellent dogged investigative reporting regarding Harvey Weinstein’s sexual harassment of women. The web of protection and silence for the sake of money and power is a cancer amongst the wealthy and powerful like Hollywood. It’s Hollywood “mafia” style. Protect your own.

  15. Only one thing has changed in the Hollywood system in the past 2 weeks: Harvey Weinstein is now poisoned goods. Everything and everybody that went into creating him is still in place. If you have the money to produce films and hire PR flacks, you have the power. Nothing has changed here. It's like politics without the voter input.

  16. This is exactly how the mafia works. I am outraged that this is happening in our country in this day and age. And to think these Hollywood people present themselves as paragons of liberal virtue and agents of change. Yeah, right. THANK YOU so much for this article and don't let yourself be intimidated!

  17. "Role Play: 'Grope gal asked for movie part." That headline was blasted to millions of readers.

    The refrain from skeptics is always, "why didn't they go to the police?" "Why didn't they go public?" The answer is as plain as this headline. And yet people are still criticizing women Weinstein harassed or assaulted.

  18. It's time to call out by name the enablers in the "protection racket". The press has the power of words to eviscerate the jackals who shield monsters like Mr. Weinstein.

  19. I understand the threat of lawsuits and the resourcing issues, but please don’t write up those obstacles under the same headline as the obstacle of craven journalists being plied with personal benefit from the predators they are seeking to out.

  20. Good for these tenacious reporters, these brave victims, and all the others who worked to expose Weinstein's crimes to the light of day. This article, which clearly details the struggles that news organizations face in exposing wealthy and powerful criminals, was informative in laying out how difficult such reporting is these days. The fact that news organizations need to have their own large bank accounts - not to mention lawyers on speed-dial - in order to report on these heinous people without being subject to abuse and smear campaigns is eye-opening. It's almost like going into battle. Which I guess, in a sense, they are - they are battling to expose the truth, and people like Weinstein are battling to cover it up. In any case, thank you for this article, Mr. Rutenberg, and thank you to those Times reporters who worked on the Weinstein story and others who are doing such difficult and trying work every day. You are truly doing a public service, and this reader thanks you for it.

  21. It's the "tyranny of the minority" pointed out by Noam Chomsky many years ago. He was asked about Alexis de Tocqueville's "tyranny of the majority in American Democracy". When the super rich on top of the 1% are running the show, the poor abused are subjected to fear of the crooked legal system, plus physical and psychological violence. Who will stand up and fight for injustice? Thankfully there are still a few reporters courageous enough and news organizations that have deep pocket to fight. And luckily they were not acquired by the rich predators, YET.

  22. Well, golly. Anyone over the age of six already knows that integrity is a scarce commodity in the world at large.

    Everyone wanted a little bit of glitter to rub off on them.

    And as has been noted elsewhere by other commenters, there no doubt were plenty of young eager women ready to give him what he wanted in their own pursuit of fame. They, too, were enablers and encouragers of his behavior.

    I've refused, over the course of my employed life in many different jobs, refused to do much less distasteful stuff when asked to, and had as much to risk as anyone. When you can't refuse to be a procurer and conspirer for this sort of filth, and just find another job or another line of work, tough. This is small potatoes in the history of hard choices facing human beings.

  23. Lindsay K: Did you actually get the meaning of my statement there? We choose to stay in jobs. There is always another one. Not so glamorous; not with the same connections you want. You sell your soul so cheaply? Don't cry now.

    The accusations of rape? Rape is a crime. Continuing to work with him, for him, and maintaining friendly relations after being raped? That's a choice. Not a great one. You don't want to go forward with charges? That might be reasonable, given the power imbalance. But staying in his world? Women accusing him of rape weren't shackled to his basement.

  24. Totally. If the decisions you're making are not life-or-death, e.g. Sophie deciding which of her children should go into a concentration camp, then you aren't making difficult choices.

    /eyeroll

  25. I think there is plenty of integrity in the world as a whole. Pehaps it does not appear that way because many of those with the most integrity may not be in newsworthy roles.

    There are plenty of people who do an excellent job of taking care of children or elderly parents, or striving to do their best at work. People who do the right thing when nobody is looking.

    Politicians who may have to compromise themselves to get funding are news worthy as are high profile criminals.

    The person who does a great job raising their children, works hard all day, and volunteers probably is given little notice.

  26. I still don't understand why all these women were silent all these years. Apparently it was common knowledge among the Hollywood community that Weinstein was a sexual assaulter. You'd think some of these A-list celebrities would have spoken out instead of waiting for a reporter to break the story.

  27. Um---their careers depended on their silence. Imagine how far this network extends in Hollywood. Telling on Harvey might infuriate his friends. No more career for many young women.

  28. Read about the women who did, in fact, come forward, and whose reports were ignored, belittled, or subjected to "blame the victim" media coverage. Read about the decision not to press charges when the evidence was solid.

  29. Because speaking out as a chorus of one gets you the treatment that Ms. Gutierrez got pretty much no matter who you are. The only reason that the NYT story worked to out HW was the careful, meticulous and secreted amassing of a group, down to the reporting of whom the victims had told contemporaneously of their mistreatment.

  30. Journalists speaking power to truth!

  31. Now would be a good time to name names of those involved in the Weinstein protection racket.

  32. Yes, responsible papers should publish the names of lawyers and pr flacks that attacked the victims. If they want to make big bucks protecting predators, the public should know who they are.

  33. Since the creation of this nation in the late 18th Century, the media has been given a special position in our society precisely so that they could report and inform the public about matters that abusers of power and influence do not want known.

    The NYTimes with its exposes of the sexual harassment of women by abusers such as Roger Ailes, Bill O'Reilly, Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein have equalized the power equation between these men and their victims. These predators are being destroyed because of the destructive behavior they imposed on their victims.

    Equally important, the New York Times has effectively announced to all those unreported sexual abusers in society who are still out there and still unknown that this same public exposure can happen to them. This is why the press has a special place in our society and this newspaper deserves all kinds of awards for this reportage and the owners applause for the truly useful function they provide our society. Congratulations to the Times and its team of talented and brave people.

  34. How unbelievably desperate must Weinstein be for the feeling of power over women that he would essentially set up hundreds of complex business arrangements so he could keep on doing it. Don't get me wrong, there are many more horrifying elements to this story, but really, I am struck by the time and energy he spent just so he could be a pervert. Clearly being a pervert is very high on his list of essentials.

  35. He's lucky (or maybe unlucky, depending upon how you view it) that he didn't meet his match and "slipped" off of a fourth floor balcony during a period of "intoxicating" seduction.

  36. What about the “protection racket” surrounding Trump?

    He’s serial abuser of women. And worse: He’s a also danger to national security and world stability.

  37. "He’s a also danger to national security and world stability."

    Second to Trump!

  38. What's going to be particularly rough for Mr. Weinstein is that he's going to become the scapegoat for every Hollywood mogul who has ever been guilty of sexual harassment. The more Weinstein is punished, the more satisfied people will be that the situation is under control and women everywhere have been vindicated.

  39. One question I have about D.A. Vance’s refusal to pursue a solid case against Weinstein is whether the latter had made campaign contributions to the former in the fashion of the Trump lawyer.

  40. If you read any accounts of Old Hollywood, the Ziegfeld follies, biographies of people like Natalie Wood--

    This stuff has been going on forever. There is something about that atmosphere that seems to allow it.

    Maybe Weinstein's downfall will finally put a stop to it.

  41. Yep. nothing new about the casting couch.

  42. "the Ziegfeld follies"

    Wasn't that displaying women's legs to celebrate Christmas?

  43. that this happens in the entertainment field is not new or news, this has been talked about since the beginning of movies, Mr. Weinstein is just the most recent, I would be very surprised if there were not others just as bad if not worse...lets all remember Cosby. But lets also remember it is not just the entertainment world, this is when men in power feel entitled and the rest of the boys club concurs. For those who now say they are afraid to meet with women alone I can only interpret that as saying either they don't know how to behave around women or they think all these women who come forward are lying.

  44. Great story!! Keep going!!! I've seen cover ups like this in healthcare management and their lawyers, their PR, their connections, their "largest employer in the community" status. The cynic wonders if the HIPPA standards protect institutions more than the privacy of their patients. I recognized in your story tactics used by hospitals to silence nurses, doctors, therapists who report wrong doing and malfeasance. The "Good Ole Boys" protect their pocketbooks! The board of directors are conveniently ignorant of what occurs at the patient level. Administrators present a rosy picture regardless of how many employees walked out the door because of their disdain for management and malpractice. The settlements, the confidentiality agreements, all smell the same. The doctor caught in the parking garage making out with the nurse in his car never gets fired, the nurse disappears. The nurse fired for doing her job can't afford to fight HR which creates a story in her file unlike the truth. The lawyers used by hospitals to fight wrongful discharge are well seasoned and at every advantage. Who has access to records and charts? Not the fired employee!! She has to find work without a good reference, not a good lawyer with a huge retainer. Agreeing to a settlement, she also agrees to a confidentiality agreement and the promise that she'll get a positive report from HR for prospective employers. Her decisions go against her soul. Patients die, she has to survive!

  45. I hope that the Statute of Limitation has NOT run out on some of Harvey Weisntein's rapes and other assaults and he can be prosecuted and jailed. If this man remains free; it's a severe indcitment of us as a society and a a nation.

  46. We don't jail the rich in this country.

  47. Well, Martha Stewart went to jail:)

  48. Between the "charm offensive" and threats of "smear and legal action" these powerful men (usually men, only sometimes women) continue to prey on their victims.
    Take the case of A. J. Benza. He was provided access to movie directors and actors and invitations to parties. It seems he accepted these offers and did not see anything wrong. He acknowledged a "certain feeling" - I assume he meant a bad feeling, although he didn't exactly say that - and implied that feeling bad would expiate his accepting these offerings. Well, he is part of the "protection racket" in my view.
    Or take the case of Ambra Battilana Gutierrez who bravely went to the police only to have her name plastered under salacious headlines. Well, that is part of the "smear" campaign that holds back many women who are sexually harassed or abused.
    Harvey Weinstein, and before him Roger Ailes, Bill O'Reilly, Bill Cosby, and others, is gone but the rapacious culture lives on. Sadly, there will be more such men in the future. And until we change the national culture these stories will be popping up from time to time.

  49. There is a much larger story here. Both Harvey & his brother Bob belonged to various lists of "America Toughest Bosses" publicized by an admiring business press including Fortune and Business Week starting in 1980, which lauded them for their tyrannical and bullying management styles and willingness to make "hard" decisions such as downsizing middle management and the workforce during the go-go 1980s and 1990s. Lists included the names of Steve Jobs, Donald Rumsfeld (CEO of G.D. Searle Pharmaceuticals), Carl Icahn (TWA), and Andrew Grove (Intel). Many of those names are still with us--and so is their management style. This is the abusive workplace from which Donald Trump first came, and it helped turn him into an American folk hero before he ran for office. After all, let's not forget that the American workplace is where gropers still today enjoy the greatest immunity. The Weinstein scandal is no scandal at all for those who have had ears to hear and eyes to see for the last thirty-seven years. Interested readers may want to consult the following that links the abusive workplace culture to our current political climate: http://roddeyreid.blogspot.com/2017/09/new-book-confronting-political.html.

  50. So in other words Hollywood is not exempt from the same problem that afflicts every other organization dominated by males, and even if we cure that tomorrow we'll still have males harassing women day and night both before and after work.

  51. What analogies and lessons can be drawn from the Weinstein case that could be applied to other "open secrets" in Hollywood? Corey Feldman bless his much maligned and mocked soul has tried to raise the issue of systemic sexual harassments and assault on underage and young men in the movie business for over a decade. Elijah Wood more recently popped his head above the parapet. Despite solid allegations of lots of depraved behaviour exceeding even what was well known about Weinstein including accounts by Feldman of the rape of an 11 year old friend and co-star and a 2015 documentary titled "An Open Secret" that dug into these issues the MSM has demontrated precious little appetite to chase these stories. Seems like a very similar paradigm to the Weinstein story. Hopefully, now we will see a breakthrough watershed moment on the very real very serious matter of the pervasive culture of sexual assault and harassment of young men and underage boys in Hollywood as well. But I am not overly optimistic the system and those it protects are enormously powerful. Rose McGowan's Twitter account was just shut down.

  52. Meanwhile Rose McGowan was suspended from Twitter because of her statements about Harvey Weinstein and Ben Affleck. Although they are attributing it to her statements on Ben Affleck. Apparently she violated Twitter rules... And what about Donald Trump? Has he not violated any Twitter rules?

  53. Seems to be different rules for rich old white guys.

  54. Bill O'Reilly, Roger Ailes, Bill Cosby, Donald Trump. Who paid the price? The victims, Hillary Clinton and, eventually, all of us.

  55. I wonder how much the lawyers really matter here. If the lawyers are so tough, why did they agree to eight different settlements, and why couldn't they keep the story secret now? I think the real issue is that men and women in Hollywood protected him and probably would again.

  56. Nice try guys, but it won't wash. All of Hollywood is complicit in this, it has been going on for decades and everyone knows about it. Hollywood is an industry built on an endless supply of young women and boys, who come to LA with dreams of fame and riches. The entire system is set up to take advantage of them - financially, sexually, playing on their dreams, and every other possible way. There are legions of voice coaches, dance studios, agents, photographers, and others, who will help them become the next big thing, if they only cough up enough money, or be willing to trade for their services.

    If you really want to prevent this from happening again, you will have to change the culture. Otherwise, you can give the standard response: "I'm Shocked! Shocked I tell you."
    "Now, sweetheart, come over here and let me tell you how I made some of the biggest names a success. . . ."

  57. Very helpful article, I would have appreciated more detail on how and why the NYTimes kept the story under wraps for over ten years. I expect there was more to it than one accuser backing out at the last minute.

    I wonder what Harvey's batting average was? For every woman who refused his vulgar advances, how many accepted them? Who are they? I don't doubt that Harvey kept this up because it worked for him more often than not.

  58. With all the talk of "fake news" from the top on down, we see the true purpose of such attacks on the free press, to destabilize and reduce the power of the press and the institution of journalism so that the powerful can remain unaccountable for their decisions and actions. Whether employing a racket as Rutenberg has outlined here, a machine to quash stories and accountability of criminal behavior, or creating an impression in the electorate that legacy news organizations are somehow producing fabricated or fake news stories, the idea is the same--to hide and obfuscate their true actions so that they are accountable to no one but themselves. This is the very reason the Founding Fathers chose only one profession to protect in the Constitution--the press. The electorate would be wise to consume as much news as it can and develop the critical thinking needed in understanding the world around them and the leaders that govern them and hold these figures accountable. The same goes for private enterprises and corporations like the Weinstein Company and its executives and founder and the Wall St. banks and insurance companies who have yet to pay for wrecking the economy eight years ago and will do so again soon.

  59. Cy Vance: Comforting the Comfortable? I still don't understand why the evidence was not sufficient to indict Weinstein for assaulting Battilana. How often do you have an audio apology? Vance keeps saying he relied on the experts as if he's not an expert. The donations from suspects' attorneys before, during, or after Vance's decision not to prosecute Weinstein or the Trumps make it impossible for me to believe in his fairness.

  60. Simple...always follow the money.

  61. Yup. A lot of people are trying to make this a problem for Democrats. This is not political, it's about class and money as well as about a sick sexual predator. But without the "protection money," this guy would have been in jail years ago. At the very top of the economic ladder, Republicans and Democrats socialize with each other, know the same people, send their children to the same schools. I have a friend who teaches at a private, very elite school where a very prominent right wing creep sends his kids, and so do at least three very prominent liberals. They all pay through the nose for "protection" for their families. They live at a completely different level from the rest of us and in many ways speak each others' language - that of privilege, permission and protection from all the varied troubles of daily life that the rest of us are subject to. They fly in private planes (often they don't even have to go through customs if they fly overseas), stay at different hotels, go to different doctors, (these doctors aren't even on the radar for "normal" people. They exist only to serve and heal the wealthy), they eat different food, they have private entrances at stores, spas, businesses. They have one big thing in common - money - which often flattens the differences in political opinion.

  62. I've never even known to wish for an unpublished newspaper story—what would it even be called, "bootleg news" or a "basement thumb drive"? But I so loved Mr. Carr's incisive mind that I wish the Times had a draft they could share. Depending on when the sources backed out, it may not have gotten that far, or make any sense given the great reporting—but the voice of Mr. Carr is one I miss very much.

  63. And who owns the sleazy New York Post...?

    Rupert Murdoch, who bankrolled and approved of for years the sexual abuse sexist culture that reigns at Fox "News"

    Truly one of the most cynical creatures to ever foist themselves on the national scene.

  64. You miss the overall point John. Its not a reb or dem thing. Its a Hollywood thing. Old ugly men pursuing young hungry actresses. Sometimes willing sometimes the aggressor. This has been going on since Charlie Chaplin Fatyy Arbuckle Mae West ( a terrible sex houndess)

    Pretty people, money, all seeking a shot. The mix will never change cause its the birds and the bees and flowers and trees

  65. Harvey Weinstein's alleged deviate sexual behavior may represent the worst, most egregious violations of basic human decency in the show business industry. But to think he is the exception and that all others operate with a set of morals, principles and boundaries is ridiculous. Weistein was basically operating in plain sight with impunity. He was, as the article states, "protected" by the vast network of insiders, journalists looking for a favor, journalist unwilling to take on a lawsuit, or victims unwilling to talk.

    He is not alone. There are others out there who simply operate with more discretion and don't have Weisteins's Caligula like approach when it comes to satisfying their libidos. Those are the victims I am interested in hearing from...not the A listers. The B listers. There are plenty of them held captive by the same life and career threatening moral ambiguity of the Hollywood protection rackets.....

  66. For the rest of the powerful and not so powerful back in their offices, production companies and studios what message are they getting from this? I suspect that Weinstein is merely the tip of the iceberg.

  67. The descriptions of how Mr. Weinstein was able to cover up, and continue for decades, his alleged crimes are as chilling as the crimes themselves. The story of Murdoch’s NY Post is revealing and scary, but, as this article points out, the Post is far from the only media enterprise that owes us all apologies.

    The willingness of so many liberal politicians at the highest levels, including the Clintons, the Obamas, Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer, etc. to accept Mr. Weinstein’s munificence are scary. (Republicans on the other side of the aisle are of course no better, only with different players.)

    Does the threat of lawsuits chill media vigilance? Surely it does, and the nation would benefit from tort reform. That said, tort reform means just that: reform, not elimination. The opportunity for redress in civil court provides a necessary check on the powerful, including powerful media; even the press sometimes gets it badly wrong, as the Duke Lacrosse case, the U Va “gang rape” case, and many more recent examples demonstrate all too well.

    Then there are the powerful in Hollywood itself, who buried their heads in the sand when they thought it would benefit their own careers or wallets, and are only too happy today, following the Times’ revelations, to hop on the their high horses. Plausible deniability can go only so far before it taxes credulity.

    This whole sordid affair is as depressing a tale as any.

  68. I understand from this article that even Tina Brown, cosponsor of The Women in the World Summit, acknowledges participating in quashing negative stories about Weinstein in exchange for negative information about movie stars in his films. Thankfully, the New York Times had the integrity to pursue and publish this story.

  69. I see where Rose McGowan’s Twitter account has been suspended for “inappropriate” tweets. If only action was taken just as quickly against Weinstein oh-so-many years ago... Another woman put in her place after speaking out.

    Women will always face an uphill fight as it concerns sexual harrassment until their concerns and complaints are taken seriously, and the power structure, both in society and the corporate world, is made more equal.

    (And I will stay on topic here and not mention a seemingly egregious double standard that Twitter appears to be applying in regard to another celebrity tweeter and his inappropriate tweets. I rest my case about the imbalance of power between the sexes.)

  70. Nevertheless I hope she will persist.

  71. Amen!

    Can we expect in-depth articles about Weinstein's history with the editors, executives, media outlets, etc.? This article implies that Tina Brown knew a lot more than she ever let on. Will we get a full story about that from The NYT or her? And if we do, what will we be told about why we didn't get it before now?

  72. Keep pulling on this thread...the story of the decade may be revealed.

  73. Does it involve an island getaway for the political elite?

  74. Can we send them ALL to an island...somewhere in the Caribbean next fall?

  75. Yes, the island is called "Manhattan."

  76. This story has run its course, yes the guy appears to have been a terrible human being based on all accounts. Let him go to trial, and get the news back on how the Republicans are about to pretend a tax cut is for the middle class when it really is a great deal for the rich only, or how the country is being made much weaker by our ignorant leader pulling us out of agreements we have made and how that is opening a door for China and Russia to gain strength in the world....or Mr. Trumps mental health, or the Russian connection.

  77. As someone who had an unfortunate encounter with HW 20 years ago, which ended up derailing any chances of meaningful work in the film or theatre biz - I couldn’t agree with you more.
    Not that work place sexual harassment isn’t an extremely important issue in the world, and it should be reported. That said, you would think he had been molesting children with all the handwringing going on. (Although, I’ve met several of the women listed the articles an found them to be amazingly infantile in “real life.”)
    I’ve been harrassed in the entertainment biz, in the service biz and in the corporate biz, by men and women. Let’s stop acting like this isn’t the prevailing culture, for cryout loud.

  78. Yes! Thank you!

  79. Uh - he was molesting children - Kate Beckinsale was 17 and Corey Feldman was definitely a minor.

  80. Thank you so much for your high moral ground feature/commentary. What are/were the options of Miramax and Weinstein Company employees with the knowledge of his behavior? That means that Mark Gill (quoted in the original NY Times piece last week) way back when is guilty of condoning and enabling him. That includes high placed executives, board members to assistants and receptionists. They are the following: 1. Quit 2. Pretend you didn't "hear" anything from another employee - it's just gossip 3. Go on the record with HR and a "news" organization that will get you fired, harassed, end your career, diminish your livelihood because no one will hire you after the exposure of your name linked to the offense as a whistleblower. I guess you don’t have children or parents to support or maybe you don’t like to live decently. You’re satisfied with an SOR and eating noodles every night. Instead of pointing fingers at people that preventing you and your colleagues from writing stories that would exploit them - Start asking and answering the real questions that involve masculine culture privilege, the culture that continues to objectify females and males in an overt aggressive sexual manner in advertising, film and television, a culture that thinks it's okay to use their physical strength and employment power to manipulate and attack men and women. Don’t forget that MEN have been attacked too.

  81. Hollywood sells sex. Female actresses, directors, casting agents--they all willingly collude in selling sex.

    So what's all the shock about? When was the last time you saw a movie where the main couple didn't have sex on the kitchen counter or up against the wall?

    Sorry. The outrage is a little overdue and underwhelming.

  82. I agree. What is the big shock??
    The whole world has, for years, heard of the Hollywood "Casting Couch" and the need to sleep one's way up the ladder to stardom.

    Please no more press on this vile man, Weinstein, or now, all of Gloria Allreds brand new clients.

    Unless criminal charges are filed against Weinstein or our illustrious men in Congress pass some important sexual harassment legislation (yeah, right), let's focus on what is most the important news in this world... Insane Trump has us teetering on the brink of nuclear holocaust.

  83. It's one thing to sell sex on the screen of a movie house. It's another thing to assault or harass women.

    Similarly, it's OK for football players to attack one another on the field. It's another thing for them to attack people off the field.

    The outrage is justified.

  84. Actually, no one was forced to do anything, and no laws were broken. I’m not defending HW or his behavior. He is a sleazebag. The objects of his sleazy advances are all, as far as we know, adults. They were made a sleazy offer, and if they refused, then another different sleazy offer. Which they, as adults exercising their own agency, chose to accept in a civil court proceeding. The price for Whistleblowers

  85. What is shocking is that it took years for the victims to speak up. Yes, any claims by these women would kill their ambitions. This is an industry that gave an oscar to Roman Polansky after he was convicted of raping a 13 year old girl.

  86. I expect there are many cases where people feel compelled to violate there principals to keep their jobs. Being a whistler blower can have large consequences, and giving up the ability to support one's family with a current job with impacts into the future is a large consequence.
    How many knew of the VW mpg / emissions issue and said nothing? How many know about medical errors and say nothing to the patient? About building code violations? How many salesmen misrepresent the products they sell if only by withhold information?

    morality is an ideal defense against things like this but morality is not universal and hence we need laws, regulation, and a criminal justice system. Unfortunately some corruptions exist in the very institutions designed to comabat it because they are run by people.

  87. The silence has nothing to do with ambition and everything to do with fear. Many of these women lost their careers to fear, disgust, self loathing and other emotions tied into being degraded, threatened, and debased. It happened to me, but not by Weinstein. And at a major network. And since I'm choosing to work on a book instead of 15 minutes of tabloid fame, or a lawsuit 35 years after the statute of limitations has run out, that's my choice. But years ago, before the advent of the Internet, there was no way for women to come forward -- as in the Cosby case, they did not know this had happened to anyone else. One of the problems victims have is that they think they are the only one. I know I did. It was 30 years before I accepted the concept that I might not have been the only one at the end of the battering ram of my abuser.

  88. Put a nuclear engineer, a heart surgeon, a UN aid worker, a fighter pilot, a clergyman and the Fourth Assistant Director of "Rambo III" together and the AD will be the one who takes himself most seriously.

  89. As executive editor of Variety during the 1990s I was aware of the stories about Harvey's sexual exploits. I also had plenty of firsthand experience with his bullying of journalists; he once threatened to plant a story about me in the NY gossip columns suggesting that I liked to wear women's clothing. I can only assume he got this idea because I was known for wearing nicely tailored clothes albeit traditional men's clothes.

    Here's the tricky part. At the time most of us in the Hollywood press simply did not think of his exploits as being newsworthy because there was not a lot of attention paid to the issue of on-the-job sexual harassment. And the concept of date rape was still emerging from the fringes of cultural awareness. Most of us just shrugged and said, "What a creep," often followed by "I feel sorry for Eve," his then-wife. I never heard anyone in those days suggesting that Harvey might have been breaking laws; that would have seemed like a really aggressive characterization of "lecherous boss" behavior. Not pursuing the story was less about fear of Harvey (who tormented us in dozens of ways anyway) than lack of understanding. Today things are different, thankfully.

  90. @Max Alexander: We shall see, in the coming months & years, if it's true that "Today things are different, thankfully".

    People thought the civil rights movement would make "things" different regarding racial issues in this country, but while progress has been made, I don't think anyone would say the civil rights battle is over.

    Similarly (speaking as a woman), I don't have any faith that this news about Harvey Weinstein will effect the kind of change that will keep most women safe from sexual harassment and predation at work or in general.

    The New York Times has what it takes (in terms of money & power for reporters & lawyers, etc.) and I applaud that, but the reality is that the average woman does NOT have either the money or the power to pursue a lecherous boss or co-worker via legal action.

  91. I guess I'm more optimistic. Civil rights in fact changed a lot; I'm old enough to remember whites only bathrooms. Did it change everything? Of course not. As for sex harassment, most American men I know, including my own two grown sons, are much more sensitive to, and aware of, the issue than I was as a young journalist 30 years ago. There is always more room for society, and individuals, to learn.

  92. Sounds like Weinstein's "I grew up in the '60s and '70s" defense.

  93. I remember couple of years ago Ms. Gwyneth Paltrow has had mentioned about getting assaulted by a Hollywood figure in a hotel. I think it was on CNN. That story suddenly disappeared. I think news media should come out with the story behind this story. Why now and what kept media quite all these days,

  94. In Jewish religious law (halakha), the laws of yichud (Hebrew: איסור ייחוד‎ issur yichud, prohibition of seclusion) prohibit a man from secluding himself with any woman other than his wife, sister, mother, or daughter. Had Harvey Weinstein simply followed his own tradition, he would have spared himself and many others untold grief.

    Rabbi Yossi Newfield

  95. I get very impatient with religious rules that treat men as so volatile and uncontrollable that the only way to keep them in check is by-
    controlling women.

    Control where women can go.
    Control whom they associate with.
    Control their social life.
    Control what they must wear.
    Control what they must NOT wear.
    Control their hair.
    Control their speech.
    Control what they say, write, express.

    NUTS to that.
    Men must behave themselves, and respect women as equals. Period.

  96. Who knows if he ever even heard that? After that would come the question of whether a person is going to make a point of trying to follow such guidance.

  97. Get over it, dude. It's the 21st century.

  98. Left establishment certainly has vast protection racket. It's been a long game for Harvey.

  99. This is what people like @Glushko don't understand. This isn't about politics, however, much they want to turn this into a Left-Right conflict, in which liberals protected Weinstein because they are all liberals. This is a story about wealth and the power than comes with money. People were silenced because Weinstein could wield power with real world consequences, not because they viewed the world from a similar political viewpoint.

  100. You might look up the words "Fox News" -- Ailes, O'Reilly, et al -- and let's not forget the Catholic Church. If you think this has something to do with politics or the "left," perhaps your myopia is the reason this continues to flourish.

  101. The thing that stands out to me and probably to many because it is sort of obvious, is that money has a pervasive corrupting influence that transcends ideology except perhaps for those good souls who choose the high road. Unfortunately, those good souls walk mostly alone on that road while everyone else drives by in limos.

    For this to be an acknowledged failing of liberal luminaries and supporters is a bitter pill, as it is I imagine for some on the right with their own situations. This is a problem that transcends countries and governments and cultures as well, so it is essentially a human failing.

    The way we best handle the problem, which will never go away, is for those not engaged in the corruption but who have knowledge of it to speak out frequently and forcefully. Enticements and other forms of coercion to gain silence can be resisted, but fighting lawsuits or employment blackballing is much harder.

    Consequently, those speaking out should work with organizations or parties who have the means to fight in court. The truth is the ultimate defense against libel charges, plus many abusers probably will try to avoid exposure for really bad behavior. Employment blackballing is a tougher fight that probably needs to be handled by union support where it exists, but that really is a fight of the weak against the strong, so the fear of individuals speaking out and acting alone is understandable.

    It would be nice if America was a country that really did support the weak.

  102. Is it a weakness to have ethical standards? I think not. After reading the article it seems pretty amazing that these long standing rumors ever hit the light of day. Every day people make decisions about whether to speak up to obvious evil acts or to look the other way. These realities have become common place and very corrupting to the human condition.

  103. Ingrid: No, of course it is not a weakness to have ethical standards. My reference to "weak" was with respect to people with little power who may be early in their acting careers who get blackballed by a powerful person and their network in the industry. Apparently, some people who have spoken up about something unethical have been blackballed or coerced in other ways. That could be a serious threat to someone trying start an acting career. So, weak in the sense that they have few tools to fight such abuse without risking their career.

  104. Thank you, Mr. Rutenberg, for an illuminating article. You say, "As David Remnick, the editor of The New Yorker, told me on Wednesday, a news organization cannot go after a powerful figure or institution if it does not have the resources for lawyers, fact checkers and experienced editors who won’t be intimidated by the protection racket."

    Yes, however the truth is that people with money who own the media do not go after other people with money unless the public forces them to do so. Today six companies control the majority of the major media in The United States and, thanks to Ronald Reagan gutting anti-trust laws, they have bought up local media or put local newspapers and television/radio stations out of business. They have nearly complete control of the information we receive. It is dangerous in a country founded on free speech and very dangerous for any society.

    Thanks for the New York Times and New Yorker for finding the courage to tell the public about this egregious institutionalized behavior toward women.

    Thanks to the other media who picked up the story. Thanks to the strong, courageous women who are speaking out. It is not a scandal. It's a male-model institutionalized travesty. Women are over one-half the population of America and the world and they, and the men who love them, must demand that this kind of behavior ends NOW!

  105. Since many may not know much about Harvey Weinstein's career it would be a thought-provoking future article that would detail the movies he was involved in and the way they promoted the values and/or the anti-values of a decent society. Did these movies reflect in some way his personal life or were they a contrast to it?

  106. Harvey Weinstein doesn't "make" movies. He raises the money and hires the people who make movies.

  107. This is a GREAT article. It should be required reading for all citizens, starting in high school.

    Most people don't understand how power works - they have no first-hand experience or know anyone with as much power as Harvey Weinstein. And so they unwittingly and unquestioningly accept the self-serving storylines and cultural set-ups that feed the goals and ego of powerful men, who play on the fears, doubts, aspirations of the masses and use the admiration/support they get in return to further their needs. And they fight FIERCELY against anyone who attempts to upset their apple cart, as this article so brilliantly outlines.

    A free press is one of only a few things that separates the US from Russia, Venezuela, and other would-be oligarchic nations. Keep up the good work NYT. We need you now more than ever.

  108. As someone with a top-tier record and reputation, Cyrus Vance, Jr. should be declining/returning any and all campaign contributions from the Protection Network.

    I can't believe that either his father, who resigned on principle as Carter's Secretary of State, or Robert Morgenthau, who preceded him as DA, would approve of dallying with the Protection Network.

  109. And probably akin to an influence racket he's used for the Academy Awards over the years. There's certainly no perfection or pure objectivity in award giving, but being the second most frequently thanked after God by the winners is not a coincidence. Whether it deserved the screenwriting Oscar or not (I personally think it did), insiders know that Good Will Hunting was substantially ghost written by William Goldman. (And by substantially, I mean beyond the normal amount of rewriting that goes on with every script in the business.) Goldman even mentioned this in one of his books, only to dubiously recant it later.

    Obviously the transgression in this particular example pales in significance to the sexual violations that these women have suffered, but Weinstein more or less invented the Oscar "campaign". I'm sure there are more cans with worms trapped inside.

  110. Why do we need the Oscars at all? Clearly it's not an honest measurement of talent. While I'm thinking about this, why do we need movie "stars?" It's such a bizarre concept that I, for one, hope will soon fade away as a relic from the past when people had no other means of entertaining themselves than reading fan magazines. Movie stars destroy really good scripts by getting rewrites done to put themselves at the center of the story instead of allowing the initial intent of the story to move forward. Movie stars behave badly in public places and make their lackeys get on their knees in front of M&M dishes to discard all the yellow M&Ms so that they (the movie star won't be offended by their presence.) Some movie stars seem like really nice people. But the system is rigged to turn them into monsters. Movie stars ask for outrageous payments to go sit in the front row of a fashion show. Movie stars simply should not be stars, they should be artisans who act, just like the rest of us are artisans who sculpt or teach or nurse or parent. Movie stars should act in the theatre. I am reminded of the late Paul Scofield, one of the greatest actors of the 20th century, who unlike movie stars, acted in plays. He took the Tube to work every day and back again. When he was knighted by the queen, he was asked how people should now address him. He said, "How about Mr. Scofield?" Movie stars sit at the top of the food chain and suffocate the rest of us with their constant presence.

  111. They are not born -- they are made and by the audience. Get used to it. Celebrity is a status that won't be going away any time soon.

  112. Why do these tactics remind me of the "Church" of Scientology. Same ruthless willingness to unapologetically cover up abuse with aggressive legal threats and litigation, on the one hand, and special perks, deals and access to the cult of celebrity, on the other hand. Shame on the agents, PR firms, lawyers, company men and other enablers who let this abuse go on so long.

  113. So NBC News had the audio from the NYPD wiretap, and still passed on airing Ronan Farrow's story. And you wonder why a guy like Weinstein could run around like he did? And where was CNN and the other networks, and the magazines like Vanity Fair and People, who all have entertainment bureaus. They all have a lot to answer for.

  114. This from the paper that covered up the child sex abuse in the Catholic church for decades, covered up the fake intelligence reports about WMD in Iraq, helped the Bush administration cover up the illegal mass surveillance in the US and overseas, helped Steve Bannon and the far-right facists push Clinton Cash lies and then spent 14 months repeating publishing nonsense about Clinton's emails.

  115. I guess this all explains why Hillary Clinton didn't know anything about Weinstein?

  116. Ah, yes, let's turn this political. That's really the story here.

  117. There are thousands of Weinseins slithering in America's workplace.
    They have their eyes on our daughters. Our 13 year old daughters.
    Speak to your children bluntly!

  118. “It uses everything at its disposal to wear down reporters or break their wills, either by wooing them with invitations to premieres, access to stars and, in some cases, possible book and movie deals.” NYT

    “They drove a dump-truck full of money to my house. I’m not made of stone.” - Crusty the Clown

  119. The abuse of the weak is despicable and it is the sure sign of bad character developed with bad education and bad upbringing. Poor fellow Weinstein!

  120. Wow! The "fig leaf" here is very small indeed!

    The mighty New York Times, which fearlessly published the Pentagon Papers and outed many Nixon-era criminals, surely wasn't afraid to take on a sleazy Hollywood producer. This story has been public knowledge in the media industry for AT LEAST 14 years, according to numerous reports. Why the long hiatus?

    In our journalism law course at the Columbia J School, taught by the late Fred Friendly of CBS and the Times' own lawyers, we were constantly reminded that "the truth is the ultimate defense" in any libel suit brought against a newspaper. We were also told how very difficult it is for a public figure like Weinstein to win such a lawsuit if the newspaper can show diligence in reporting and fact checking -- "reckless disregard for the truth" and "malice" would be almost impossible to prove in such a case.

    We've also learned this week that the Times itself has been aware of this story for at least a decade, according to a former female reporter interviewed by the two NYC publications. So why the long delay in assigning the necessary "resources" to this story? This is most certainly NOT the Times "finest hour," friends.

    Today's tepid apologia by Jim Rutenberg rings hollow in my ears. How very discouraging that the Times isn't willing to accept its share of responsibility for the long delay in "outing" Harvey Weinstein. No more excuses, Dean Baquet, no more weasel words and self-congratulatory quotes. "Heal thyself, physician!"

  121. Now is the time for Hollywood to rally around a cause that all can agree upon and use its talent and resources for good: Create a documentary about this despicable individual and expose the disgusting behavior that has been part of the industry since the days of Louis B. Mayer.

    Working title: Notorious P.I.G.

  122. Lets be honest here. The -network- that is now protecting Weinstein is Twitter. They suspended Roae McGowan from tweeting because of her comments about Weinstein and other A-list actors that she says are/were enabling. Twitter shuts her down for 12 hours, threatening that she cannot tweet these kinds of comments and KEEPS the abusive, condemning, threatening, violent, we-are-all-going-to-die-if-he-does-not-stop tweets from Trump. Be gone, Twitter.

  123. No, twitter suspended her for violating the terms of use by posting a private phone #.

  124. Yeah, I read that, too. I did not fall for it, though.

  125. The once-mighty are falling all around us.

  126. Jim's points are well taken, and the Times has done much to bring Weinstein's abuses into the public eye. But this article has a holier than thou tone that is a bit inappropriate. The Times indeed has done the world a great service by exposing the sexual abuses of a leading progressive. But the Times apparently had an opportunity to expose Weinstein in 2004, and did not do it under pressure from Weinstein enablers like Matt Damon. How many women were abused by this predator since then? The Times can indeed take credit for this man's fall, but Jim should not get too sanctimonious about it.

  127. I’m sorry, this article’s title suggests we’re going to face down the network of lawyers and publicists who shielded Weinstein.

    Yet I don’t see one named here in this piece.

    These hired guns who use every tactic imaginable to ensure their clients avoid scandal are more (or less) than professionals providing a service. They are crushing victims across a very large and powerful industry and making sure that nothing breaks up the flow of naive young people who, in pursuit of their creative dreams, are walking into an environment wherein sexual predation is the norm and they they themselves are what’s on the menu.

    But then neither did the Weinstein’s media enablers story, you know, actually name Weinstein’s actual media enablers as did the piece from the Huffington Post yesterday detailing, with names and picture, exactly who killed Ronan Farrow’s piece at NBC.

    Out these lawyers and publicists! They are the infrastructure of Hollywood and they have one job and that is to protect the industry. Detail their outrageous handy-work and name names.

    And investigate everyone who was responsive to their manipulations. Everyone at your own paper. NBC. And all the way up to the prosecutor’s office who backed off from Harvey and then, it has been alleged, took money from someone associated with Weinstein.

  128. Who are lawyers and law firms which were paper these numerous settlement agreements or who were threatening so many women into silence. That would be the next chapter of the story worth revealing.

  129. Lawyers are paid to do what their clients say. Blame the people who pay the lawyers, not the lawyers

  130. OK, but identify the lawyers & or flacks who do this. Let them stand up & be proud of their work (& maybe explain it to their daughters).

    Just having a law license doesn’t make you have to take these casas.

  131. Although I understand the premise of this article and its attempts at conveying that reporters are humans and are doing their job as best as they can given professional constraints not typical in other professions, it does not condone inaction. If it is not powerful press, then who has the ability to take down the powers-that-be. This goes against the press's mission and it being the 5th pillar of a democracy. What is stopping us from then becoming an authoritarian society with only a few entrenched individuals and groups? Just like other individuals who were reluctantly complicit in his crimes, the press should own up to its failure and learn from it. This selective amnesia about its mission is beyond comprehension.

  132. Sorry, but I'm reading your critical comment only as a re-statement of the problem addressed in the article.

  133. Starting out in the foreign film distribution business in the late 1970s, early '80s, I was repeatedly warned by my young colleagues, "Don't work for Miramax!" They were considered bullies who harassed their staff. Meeting the staff at film markets and festivals, I now wonder which producers, publicists, assistants and script readers ushered these young women through the doors. There are a lot of people in this business who don't really love film, but are predators -- women included. On another note, there were wonderful foreign film and indie distributors who advanced film culture in the U.S.

  134. Although I agree with the argument of the article, it does have one flaw: Gawker. I think the posting of sex tapes is hardly considered 'journalism', nor indeed in the putative doxing of people's sexuality. Ultimately, because Gawker chose to do this to people with the means to fight back against this 'journalism' the case went to court and Gawker lost on the merits of the case ... that is not bullying, that is how the legal system works.

    That these types of things have to go through the Press rather than the judicial system, itself apparently corruptible based on the decisions of prosectors like Cyrus Vance, is part of the problem. That this ultimately got through the Press and is back into the courts systems is a good thing, and an empowering lesson for reporters and prosectors committed to doing the right thing - even against the rich and powerful.

  135. The Cy Vance press conference in which he derided 'the court of public opinion' in regard to not pursuing charges against Weinsetin and accepting a campaign contribution from Weinstein's lawyer is a complete outrage.

    The court of professional opinion, lawyers and prosecuters, says he should have pursued the case.

    This is not the only instance of paying off the D.A. to look the other way that has come to light in recent weeks.

    Governor Cuomo has the administrative powers to remove CY Vance from office and should do so immediately to restore the public's confidence in the criminal justice system.

  136. Thank you for this article. Very enlightening. This is a story of historic proportions that, one hopes, will begin to have its effect on people in many ways. Getting victims to speak up, declawing the "protection racket" by exposing them, and honoring our media instead of trashing them.

  137. I'm sure there were stories about another powerful man swirling around during the early years of the apprentice. Wonder how much better the world would be if those had been pursued.

  138. The Weinstein Saga is being mirrored in real time by the Trump Saga. Republicans and Trump's Base are the enablers actively participating in the physical, emotional and mental abuse of those who fail to participate in his version of winning/success. Maybe some of these men will get sick of how it feels to see the abuse being visited on our Democracy and our future and quit enabling . But that would take courage and conviction that this is not right and it's time to pull the foundation of support for this kind of abuse in the name of power.

  139. Mr. Weinstein is one of the largest contributors to the Democratic Party and was a HRC insider so how are Repubs and He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named the enablers? They all have the same rudderless moral compass, but it's got nothing to do with the current state of affairs (no pun intended!)

    Slimy guys exist regardless of any culture, class, religion or creed.

  140. Frankly, the law needs to be changed to make nondisclosure agreements in civil suits nonbinding.

  141. Remember when "righteous" Ben Affleck flipped out on Bill Maher?

    “I think I’d rather tell the truth and say what I believe in and make people unhappy than sort of pretend to think something else to accommodate them and try to be liked. That’s just the way it goes and I don’t think I’m any great champion of anything, but if they’re going to put me on a show, I’m going to say what I think.”

    -Ben Affleck

    GREAT acting going on here, truly Oscar worthy!

  142. Ben Affleck in his past has had a strong penchant for strippers and hookers and heavily imbibing in substances. He completely destroyed his own marriage.
    He and HW were brothers in arms.

  143. nbc has got to be the worst news channel. Who watches it anymore? Kids under 30 don't even watch TV broadcast today. Hopefully they will suffer the demise similar to the NFL.

  144. As soon as I read the Weinstein outing by the NYT I had nothing but respect for the paper. I am proud to be subscriber because such institutions deserve my patronage and my money.

    Thanks again NYT for the investigative reporting. It is much appreciated.

  145. The conspiracy of silence - from the Weinstein Company and the majority of Hollywood of this systemic abuse continues with Rose McGowan being suspended from Twitter. She has been outspoken on this topic. Her suspension is definitely worth an op-ed piece on the suppression of freedom of speech on Twitter and Facebook and the power inequality which takes place on these social media platforms for folks like Trump versus McGowan. I, for one, would appreciate the NYT giving Ms. Gowan op-ed space.

  146. The first time I was sexually harassed, it was by my work study boss in college. I was 18. It never stopped through numerous jobs and finally in my 30s, I'm sitting across the table from a slob during an interview who is suggesting I could stop by anytime (wink-wink) and it doesn't have to be work related. Huh? I finally figured out it was ALL about power, which extends well up the chain of bosses, some of who are guilty of the same things their employees have done.

  147. mr. Weinstein has his own culpability in this, everybody wants to focus on the fact of his actions. but nobody's focusing on the fact that the women themselves, by not standing up for themselves. and putting clear definition that this Behavior was not acceptable exacerbated the problem. they left it for the next woman. there's blame on both sides to go around when you're not standing up for yourself you're not living your life. you're allowing other people to dictate your behavior and actions. be yourself if something bothers you that you find defensive let it be known if the person doesn't back off then then it becomes a crime. but if you're going to court and settling I'm sorry that's accepting the behavior. it doesn't matter who the person is what position they hold people need to start holding people accountable in an adult peaceful manner. one of the oldest things man does sex in this world is too taboo to talk about. no one can have a meaningful dialect on this subject.

  148. Easy for you to say, but it's not the reality of fear, paycheck, livelihood, reputation, or the reality of being squashed into nothing by a powerbroker. There is no such thing as "an adult, peaceful manner" when you are dealing with criminal behavior.

  149. Per Tina Brown in this piece just above:

    “Another of his co-opting tactics,” she wrote for the Women in the World Summit she sponsors with The New York Times, “was to offer a juicy negative nugget about one of the movie stars in his films or people in his media circle (fairly often, me) in a trade to quash a dangerous piece about himself.”

    Mis-directional shell game.

    Thank goodness there are journalists out in the world who will look and see the truth and have the courage and moral conviction to point out truth.

  150. This column is bizarre. Of course only outlets with resources and factcheckers are the only ones who could do the story. There is nothing new about that so I don’t get Ruttenberg’s point: did he expect the Honolulu Advertiser to jump in? And the poor media manipulated by big bad Harvey? The media let itself be manipulated. This constant woe-is-me we-are-helpless has to stop. The Times did a beautiful job and from the fallout they are still powerful than any single individual. Thank God.

  151. I once kneed an Arab ambassador for whom I worked while living in a Muslim country (not his). I too was young and powerless and wanted to keep my job.

    I didn't find those facts a hindrance to defending myself against unwanted advances.

    Sure--I didn't last long in that position. Didn't ruin my life, or anything. I moved on...

  152. You could have ended-up in a Saudi prison for a long stretch, which is exactly the point of the story. Your story actually reeks of fish to me. In a part of the world where a young British man is currently in prison for touching a local man on the hip as he tried to avoid falling-over at a bar, you kneed a local and only lost your job? Hmmm.

  153. I wasn't in Saudi Arabia.

  154. Disbelieving a woman, huh, PeteH?

  155. Regardless of Thiel's money involvement in the Gawker suit, the fact is Gawker lost in court. They weren't driven out by a SLAP lawsuit. A jury awarded Hogan 140 million in damages which Gawker negotiated down to 31 million. A lot of us think it was the correct decision. I am not sure why a legitimate journalist, not trolling the world of in home sex tapes for a "story", would see this suit as threatening.

  156. Another article with no mention of Cyrus Vance, Jr and his cronies, dirty cops whose responsibility was to prosecute sexual assault crimes. Instead, they went far out of their way to avoid prosecution, while accepting tens of thousands from the suspect's lawyers.

  157. Those are totally false and ridiculous accusations. The tapes revealed Weinstein grabbed a breast. That is hardly enough to prosecute anyone with ... You could benefit from a few episodes of Law & Order SVU at the least.

  158. We’ll, that is battery, & probably assault & more. We are nearing the end of “that’s just grabbing a breast” as an answer.

  159. This is really an indictment on the media business, isn't it? It seems to follow the self serving pattern of the victims who didn't come forward because they had too much self interest at stake in their careers, and the victims who took the "consolation prize" of a settlement, which nobody was forced to, allowing the predatory ways to continue. I guess the message is if there weren't so many people looking out for themselves a lot of people would have been protected from Mr. Weinstein. The fact that the NYT has vast resources and chose, apparently due to feminist activism as of late, to prioritize this story doesn't absolve them of not doing more to get the job done earlier on, no matter how much they want to pat themselves on the back now. Far smaller papers have done much more on far less.
    So I guess given this deep throat account the question is why isn't the NYT revealing who the protection racket is? Could it be because it inconveniently includes many prominent women and so called feminists the Times would rather protect? Maybe that's a scandal for another paper to break.

  160. Don't leave out the military system that covers up for the brass with Inspector General (IG) IG inspections and in fact seldom brings criminal charges. "There are Harvey Weinstein in every single industry - from law to finance to retail." Don't leave out the military . The military particularly the Army top brass circles the wagons whenever one of their General officers are caught red handed. The latest was the despicable Major General who was caught sexting and grooming a young enlisted soldier's wife over a thousand times at a Army installation in Vicenza Italy . The Army suspended the General in place since Sept 1, 2017. So the Army Chief of Staff General Milley is allowing this two star General to collect his salary for house sitting while somebody decides what to do with this predator. Sad state of affairs in civilian and military circles of authority in that no one seems to protect women or men from predators.

    https://www.stripes.com/news/the-text-messages-with-a-younger-married-wo...

  161. I've worn many hats in my past, when I was younger, worked the night club scene, didn't mind the free drinks, comp'd bottle service, women, etc... just for helping get the word out / generate a buzz, get ladies on the guest list, met some famous artist... was fun. I also spent time as a Talent Manager / Talent Scout, Casting Agent... 6'3" 220 lb lean and tanned, I'd often get offered favors. I worked with magazine/print, music, and film production companies. Never was 'big time' if you will, but it, at times, paid the bills, tried my hand at directing a couple short films but wasn't all that great at it. In that circle, I met or worked with more than just a few ladies whom are now well-known actresses, singers, models but the bulk of the people I met are still unknown. 98% of them I didn't 'hook up with', but 2% I partied with, and either my friends, associates or I, would wind up hooking up casually with that 2%, and that's it, they had fun, so did we, I never really pushed them to the front of the pack solely because they had a little fun with us, but it was never expected either, except for one lady, but that's a long story. Where Weinstein messed up, is he went for the other 98%... and he's neither young, single, attractive, tall, or lean. I only lasted 2 years, left the biz to pursue a higher income (which I found).

  162. Money=Power. End of story.

  163. Ailes, Cosby, O'Reilly, Trump, Weinstein. All rich men who think they should be able to get away with harming other people because of their money and power. They must all be treated like the criminals they really are. Wealth should not put people above the law.

  164. I think you forgot someone in rogues gallery list...

  165. Excellent article that describes how difficult good journalism is to practice. We live in a time where many people under 45 get their news exclusively from social media (shudder) and rarely consider the source. Consequently, unless they went to J-school, they don't have a clue about high journalistic standards and can't discern real from fake (and don't recognize the value of journalistic integrity to a democracy).
    This has always been a part of our society, as evidenced by the long existence of the gossip tabloids in grocery and discount store check-out lines. But in the past, it felt like most people recognized that the tabloids were fluff and fiction, or at least they questioned their veracity.
    Today, tabloid journalism has cloaked itself in credibility through slick production values (FOX News, E! News, etc.), giving the protection rackets more channels in which to practice their dark arts on an ever more gullible and less discerning audience.
    Once again, it seems to boil down to individual responsibility to develop and maintain an educated perspective. Sadly, our society seems to favor the distraction of entertainment over the quest for factual information.

  166. "If the charm offensive doesn’t work, it may resort to smears and legal action."

    NBC is the same network that protected Trump by refusing to release the Apprentice tapes, which were said to be racist, sexist and otherwise offensive from one end to the other.

    In protecting both Trump and Weinstein, I wonder whether the threat of "smears" includes knowledge that someone high up at NBC engaged in the same behavior, and that he is trying to protect himself by blocking NBC's release of what it has on Trump and Weinstein.

  167. Bulletin. This just in to the news room: Hollywood just discovered the casting couch.

  168. This is a bizarre column in that it's ostensibly about Weinstein's network of protectors, but then doesn't report on who makes up that network and what they did.

    Is there a network of protectors of the protectors? It's an open secret that this network for Weinstein was led by Matt Hiltzik and David Boies, his PR adviser and attorney, respectively, but no mention of either in this column.

  169. And why isn't there a widespread cry among women to BOYCOTT twitter NOW???? Are we going to just stand by and let Twitter silence women when they speak out?

  170. There are creeps every where. Teach your children ethics and that money doesn't buy love. There are far more important things in a well lived life other than fame and fortune.

    The creeps? Kick where it hurts.

  171. In the end, this is a story about the institution of patriarchy. Weinstein, Trump, Clinton, Spitzer, et al, it's where patriarchy will always end up, always.

  172. Not sure why you threw Spitzer into that lot. He had consensual sex with a prostitute. Not the same as sexual assault in my book.

  173. Jackson of Long Island writes, "Not sure why you threw Spitxer into that lot. He had consensual sex with a prostitute. Not the same as sexual assault in my book."

    No, certainly, buying women illegally for sex is different from assault. In patriarchy, men can harass, intimidate, and bully women into sex, or they can buy women as young as their own daughters for sex.

  174. This entire sordid episode reminds me of Bernie Madoff.
    A lot of people knew or suspected.
    One analyst went to the SEC with proof.
    Nothing happened until everything collapsed.
    I doubt if anything will happen to Harvey.
    It's not against the law to be gross and disgusting.
    He will go to rehab and be cured.
    He will make some more movies.
    He will be forgiven by Hollywood.

  175. I wouldn't even be surprised if Harvey is delighted with all the publicity.
    Everyone in America knows who he is and what he did to their favorite actresses.
    He is a sick man.

  176. This is simply one instance of apparently-established misconduct by powerful people causing damage to vulnerable people. Sexual situations are simply one of many forms of oppression, which can occur through the exercise of governmental power or other forms of economic power. Whistle-blowers are, more often than not, ruined. Expressions of repentance by the malefactor; testimonials of good deeds; the tired clichés about forgiveness, reform and rehabilitation, are all at war with deterrence and retribution. I suggest trying,-- aside from penal sanctions in suitable cases,-- punitive damages on an astronomical scale, sufficient, in appropriate cases, to reduce the most serious offenders to destitution. I am attempting here to state general principles, not to judge this or any other particular case. I wish to see deterrence and retribution once again become dominant. This, of course, is a very unfashionable perspective.

  177. And no one has yet remarked upon the vilest detail, though we've all heard it now:

    "I swear on my children..."

  178. How brave of Tina Brown to talk about Harvey Weinstein's "co-opting" strategies now. Where was her tell-all bravery when she was his business partner? Far from being a victim of his name-dropping, she seems to have made her peace with being co-opted.

  179. Interesting to speculate on the 'racket' Trump has protecting his very public record of sexual abuse and harassment. There is an elephant in the room, and it is ironic that the Republican Party is at least part of the protection racket Trump enjoys.

  180. Yes, by any means let’s make this political.

  181. I completely understand that Harvey Weinstein's alleged behavior, as we have recently come to understand it, is reprehensible and boorish. It's the old "Director's Couch" taken, I guess, to the extreme. However, I can only imagine what was going on in the 1920's, 1930's, 1940's and all the way up to the pre-Women's Movement days of the 1970's, on those infamous directors' couches. On the other hand, there is a glaring hypocrisy at play among the actresses who stood silently by, accepting their fame and fortune, without uttering a word and at the same time demanding more "women's roles" so as to portray the fantasy that they are fearless crusaders of equal rights. In real life, as opposed to the make-believe world where they felt safe on the screen, all they would have had to have done would have been to open up their mouths. But they didn't do it because they are, in the real world, weak and gutless. That goes for their weak male partners as well who stood by and said nothing, as well.

  182. It's easy to say those women should have spoken up, but spoke up to wwhom The Hwood police bought by Weinstein? The media, who wouldn't run the story because of backlash? Are you so naive to believe if only they would have spoken up, none of this woukd have happen? Do women in your company speak up? And if they do, go to HR, the police, what happens? Nothing but fired. While you sit home with a roof over your head, eating every night, the women who speak out are out on the street.

  183. In the past this Hollow-wood behavior was called being a ladies man, boys being boys, alpha leading man type stuff, being a player, whatever it took to make Sammy run. It goes back to rat packs, and guys with names like Warren. The whole sorry mess running on unbridled narcissism that needed victims, playthings and patsies to make it all worth it.

    It took a ton of nerve for the writer to go after this. It takes a ton of nerve for Rose McGowan to stand the line and of all those coming forward she gets my Oscar and a purple heart.

  184. No. A Hollywood producer who takes advantage of young actresses? Really? When did this start happening? Did anyone know?? Like a (gasp, dare I say it) "casting couch"? That's just terrible. Shame on you...

  185. There's a national desk. A foreign desk. A financial desk. And a sports desk. No newspaper ever thought it would need a `pig' desk. They do now.

  186. If the victims had gone to someone like WikiLeaks -- out of reach of lawsuits and intimidation -- instead of running up against the craven bureaucracies of MSNBC and NYT, the truth would have been out sooner, and more victims would have been saved.

  187. So, being embraced by the President of the United States, right after inauguration speech is not worthy of mention as a "don't mess with me" sign?

    Or is Mr. Rutenberg still fearful of mentioning the Weinstein/Democratic Party gravy train?

  188. I love the sentence "For many journalists, Mr. Weinstein was the white whale that got away." Such a perfect reference in both a literary and visual sense.

  189. Once again, I find myself saying "Thank God for the New York Times."

  190. Hubris, power, lawyers and money. The same formula that generations of large corporations have used to stay above the laws and common decency expected of the rest of us. The outraged stars, who now squeal with indignation, have smugly been Corporation-Hollywood touts, enjoying all the benefits of their employers. They are enablers too.

  191. There was a clever if short lived TV series in 1999 called "Action" featuring the comedian Jay Mohr the head of a troubled film production company. His last chance to finance a "comeback" picture was to get his Vice President and a former prostitute to come out of retirement and "party" with a couple of middle age overweight and lecherously obnoxious brothers whose company had the dough to make it happen. Not a coincidence.

  192. The network that protected Harvey Weinstein is called Fox News. In fact, the entire network of right-wing media failed to break the story; the "liberal" New York Times did.

    I wonder why Fox News would remain silent about juicy revelations of a high-powered sexual predator for years and years?

  193. CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, and NBC also remained silent for years and years.