Response

There have been some extremely serious and criminal allegations against me over the last week. All of the allegations are completely untrue, and I’ve hired a law firm to represent me in the legal actions against the offending parties.

I know this isn’t, for now, much information. I will have a full and complete response to these allegations sometime later this week. My goal will be to direct as much sunlight as possible on the issues so that the absolute truth can be known and I can begin to put my life back together.

I’ve also asked my attorneys to contact appropriate law enforcement agencies about these false allegations. Given the gravity of the claims, I think it’s important that the police be involved in this now.

Update: First letter from my attorney is here.

56 thoughts on “Response

  1. Craig says:

    It’s unfortunate that lawyers are now involved as anyone who has been to court knows it is now a case of who has the deepest pockets.

    • Perhaps lawyers wouldn’t be involved if someone with a grudge or wanting attention hadn’t made untrue allegations. Charges such as the ones Mike is supposedly guilty of should have been handled through legal channels. Attempting to try and hang him via social media is nothing more than cheap bullshit.

      Have we learned nothing from the fiasco Adria caused recently? Trying to shame people in public only ends up biting that person in the ass. :)

      • Craig says:

        I am not saying that the social media he said, she said is the best solution. But unfortunately the legal system is designed to get results, not find out the correct answers. And that is why it is unfortunate, because deepest pockets normally gets the results they desire.

      • jeffj says:

        It’s either “someone with a grudge” or rape. None of us yet know which one it is. I am sure we all agree that we want ultimately the TRUTH to be known when this is all said and done….

  2. “Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.” – Buddha

  3. I’m sorry for my role in this, too. I wrote in reaction to this here: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/436229309799641

  4. bkerensa says:

    When I heard about this on TechCrunch… I thought boy how distasteful is it for a site to publish a post and link to unsubstantiated allegations.

    Hope you get this all sorted out soon!

  5. ricky5947 says:

    I have to agree with you, Robert Scoble.

    I don’t know how much these people are worth that have defamed Michael’s reputation, including Calacanis, but I can see that they are going to be on the losing end of a legal battle, and have to ante up BIG for the damages.

    I have to say I didn’t lose my faith in Arrington despite the gossip mill, having read in the past about the many good things he has done and the honest reporting he has always adhered to (which made TC great).

  6. I found the video by Loren Feldman, in which he stated he believed the allegations against you in spite of having no first-hand experience of the alleged conduct, to lack all credibility. The man is a total attention-seeking idiot.

    First of all, what kind of loser makes that kind of video and uses it as an opportunity to do a product placement for his own company. He starts and ends the video with the statement “This is Loren Feldman of 1938Video.” 1938 is his struggling video company.

    Second, let’s take a look at the success of Loren Feldman’s creative work The image at this link shows four videos on Loren Feldman’s YouTube channel. https://dl.dropbox.com/u/10328969/feldman.png Three of the videos have no more than 16 views. The fourth video, titled “Thoughts on Michael Arrington Hitting Women”, has over 5000 views. (the video now has over 8000 views). This is a man who can’t get anyone to watch his videos until he makes a video accusing a well-known figure in the tech industry of rape. I’m sure 1938 Video is really really successful!!!

    Third, there is clear motivation as to why Loren Feldman would promote false allegations against someone. Read this story from 2009 http://www.crunchnotes.com/2009/11/15/choosing-between-buddy-and-a-buddy/, in which Arrington describes how a rift developed between himself and Feldman after Arrington had to bail out on a conference run by Feldman. Since that time, Arrington went onto huge fame and fortune with TechCrunch while Feldman become more and more of a nobody. The high point in Feldman’s career was 2007 when he had a contract to produce videos for Verizon that got cancelled after Feldman made a racist video called “Tech Nigger” – one could easily imagine Feldman in these circumstances becoming extremely jealous of Arrington’s success while his own career flamed out.

    Lastly, what kind of idiot would title this kind of video “Thoughts on Michael Arrington Hitting Women.” At this point, the allegations are only allegations, and although Feldman admits that in the video, he titled the video in the most inflammatory and damaging way possible. This isn’t someone who believes the allegations to be true–as he says in the video–Feldman has no idea about that. This is a psycho who seems to WANT the allegations to be true.

    Here’s a link to the crappy video for those of you who haven’t seen it. I think it reveals more about its creator than it does about Arrington

  7. ASDF says:

    FYI (from Twitter):

    Jenn Allen
    ‏@JennAllen
    @Jason was about to address that as verification of evidence in a “reinvented justice system.” Mike’s AWOL bc he knows the truth.
    Reply Retweet Favorite More
    10:17 PM – 7 Apr 13

  8. Michael, congratulations on raising up the level of “she said, he said”. The allegations are strong enough to ruin your career if left hanging in the air. My suggestion: don’t go only after the initial “source” because Calacanis actively poured gas over fire without any shred of evidence or common sense. The way I see it he is a perpetrator of defamation and false light accusations, talking about your supposed guilt as if it was a known and established fact.

    Full disclosure: my company Silicon Arabia is also considering suing Calacanis and his company for breaking their contract as even organizers and spreading unfounded allegations against our company, while behaving in the most blatant sexist way against our female contractors. In my opinion Calacanis exhibits a pattern of falsely accusing (or actively promoting false accusations) others of things which are obviously untrue, pretending to be a public interest hero.

  9. I hope you find yourself in a ‘better place’ and with much peace of mind, when all this has blown over. Sending you vibes of strength & confidence.

  10. These accusations didn’t pass the smell test due to the fact that charges were not applied when it allegedly happened in the first place.

    Although I personally don’t know you Micahel, you don’t exactly have that reputation (your more into bashing bad corporate practices than assaulting another human being).

    As they say in court you’re innocent until proven guilty and with respect to the accusers they better show some hard evidence or go away (as anyone can make up a story against anyone due to being slighted in a relationship).

  11. Jack F. says:

    If Arrington is exonerated it is the duty of every decent human being to treat him as if the accusations were never made.

    Arrington may be a dick sometimes, but no one deserves to have their life destroyed by unfounded allegations.

  12. Imran says:

    It wasn’t going to an issue. But apparently gawker has more serious issue with you than your ex. You are an influential person, and this does not settle well with a lot of people. I am not going to dive into your personal life. Because it’s between you and your ex. she perhaps acted out of frustration. (because when relationship is ending – it normally happens, it’s no surprise). But relationship should end in the same elegant way and they start.

  13. A says:

    This plain sucks. Good luck to you.

  14. LGV says:

    no “undo button” on social media, or the internets – you might as well “try boil the ocean”

  15. Now dear, I’m a mom and I have some good advice for you: http://bit.ly/ZISZjc

  16. Lean in! .. trouble is only you and Jenna know the facts and those that are jumping on this to up their “social” numbers or line their pockets look worse than both of you. If you treated Jenna bad then it’ll come back on you, you know that. If you didn’t it’ll come back on Jenna and she’s knows that. Either way its makes no sense turning this into an internet-wide man v woman trial which is what it is now. At the end of the day even Oscar’s still able to get on with his life.

    • woman in tech says:

      > Either way its makes no sense turning this into an internet-wide man v woman trial which is what it is now.

      This became an “internet-wide man v woman” trial when she made her first post in public a week ago, and then continued with public comments. This response is very professional and composed, considering all that has happen.

      • Doh! .. you’ve done the emotional thing again. If you re-read my comment without bias, which is how it was written, you’ll realise I’m talking about the fact no one wins from this. Jenna’s already lost the same way Adria did & Michael may/may not clear his name but the legal battle itself will destroy his reputation. Speaking from the UK it sure looks like war. Speaking as a woman its a valuable lesson to learn.

    • Laureana says:

      There’s “treating someone bad” and there’s rape and physical assault. You can’t go accusing a man of criminal behavior just because you feel he somehow wronged you. This is NOT about “social”.

      • Another woman misjudging my comments due to emotion?? I’m not defending Jenna namely because I don’t know the facts. Do you? I certainly know the difference and you need to re-read my reference to ‘social’.

        • Laureana says:

          From your comments there’s something you don’t seem to understand. This is not about someone being bad, or about gossip. This is about accusing a person of a very serious crime that is punished with jail time. In the case of Jenn’s accusations, repeated abuse, rape using violence or threat of violence, and death threat, you are looking at a life sentence.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_in_the_United_States#Criminal_Punishment

          This is not kindergarten, you don’t get to say someone is a dangerous criminal because they are “bad” to you, as you say in your comments, you don’t get to send someone to jail because of envy, jealousy or anger. You don’t get to throw accusations in behalf of third parties as Jenn did in Gawker. This has gone way beyond reputation, specially because rape and sexual abuse are terrible and prevalent issues. If Michael respects women, and take this abhorrent issues seriously, he MUST take legal action.

          How can you say this is about whether someone was treated bad? Only a rapist would say rape is “treating someone bad”. Only a thoughtless person can equate repeated rape with “being bad to” someone, and of course such person wouldn’t take any action at all, I suspect because such person wouldn’t have any reputation to save anyways, (nor money to invest in lawyers), lots of free time to spend in jail (maybe), and no career to savage at all.

          In no way this resembles the Adria thing. Even if Adria had been right in what she heard, saying something offensive is far from a violent crime. This is a complete different story.

          “If you treated Jenna bad then it’ll come back on you, you know that. If you didn’t it’ll come back on Jenna and she’s knows that. ” That’s not how the world works. Never heard of Fatty Arbuckle? Many innocent people go to jail, many witches burn. Michael is wise in lawyering up and defending himself. It’s the adult thing to do.

          “Another woman misjudging my comments due to emotion??” Could you be any more sexist? What else will you ask? If I have my period? And please, don’t even try to say you are a woman, because even if you are, that’s a sexist, prejudiced, dumb thing to say.

          • I’m sorry LoL but did you just say I wasn’t female? Have you heard of Facebook? This is a new one for me, a woman telling me I’m sexist towards women ha ha. Babe, you’re letting the side down. You need to stop. Take a deep breath. Lean in! Think before you write. Thats exactly the issue here. The rumours of mental health issues (about Jenna) would change the situation entirely so you need to calm down and ‘be like Arrington’ .. which could well be the next internet meme.

            No one knows the facts yet so just chill.

  17. Laureana says:

    {hugs}

  18. Agnes E. says:

    Go, Michael, go. Article agree.

  19. woman in tech says:

    If these allegations are found to be untrue, it is a major setback for the real victims of abuse and for other women in tech.

    There were far too many people on social media who not only assumed guilt, but spun this into a sexism in tech and woman issue. We are going to be severely burned by that.

    Regardless of what happens from here, if Arrington is proved right or not, the fact is that this incident was severely mishandled by a very large number of people.

    The way the mob formed around this made me feel very uneasy. There were only a very small number of people who provided a voice of reason, I wish more of us listened to them.

  20. Philip Elmer-DeWitt says:

    “All of the allegations are completely untrue”

    From Wikipedia’s entry on False accusations:

    “The statistics on false accusations of rape vary widely, from 2% to Eugene Kanin’s (1994) figure of 41%, which derived from a case study of a police agency in a metropolitan city in the Midwest. John Bancroft states that a search of the literature on false rape reports reveals that Kanin’s figure of 41% false rape reports is regarded as unusually high. FBI statistics for the annual rate of false reporting of forcible assault across the country have been a consistent 8%. A study from the UK found that of the approximately 14,500 cases of rape reported in 2005/2006 9% were classified as false allegations.”

  21. Take my clicking “like” in the post positive interpretation possible. I don’t know what’s going on, but you never struck me as someone who deserved things worth suing over.

  22. Peter Morgan says:

    Mike, keep your head high, you have nothing to worry about – bottom feeders exist in every walk of life – don’t let them get to you.

  23. Joe Clark says:

    If by “legal actions” Arrington means defamation complaints, he needs to be prepared for indelicate questioning on the witness stand and a rather thorough discovery process. I would expect at the very least Gawker not to fold in the first instance and take this all the way to court.

  24. Ah Arrington, always keeping things a little “TMZ” in the techsphere. Keep it spicy. I kinda like it.

  25. Alex says:

    +1 to the comment.. “has nothing been learned from the Adria fiasco”. Further, I even think that particular clusterf*** may be partly responsible for this. Would one have happened without the other? An interesting question.

    In any event, there’s a worrying trend of trial by social media, women against men. Women who are demonstrating themselves to be too-fast-to-tweet, seemingly empowered by their new found ability to broadcast extremely damaging allegations publicly, for all to see and hear. It’s one thing to throw your husband’s golf clubs onto the front lawn (it’s never the back, is it?), it’s another to do this. The digital lynch mob that follows is almost as bad.

    The fact is that Adria and now this woman are going way beyond what is socially or legally acceptable, and will ruin it for other women in doing so, possibly and hopefully when a judge chucks a book at this kind of behaviour. I’m glad to hear you are taking legal action Michael. And I hope someone pays for it, in a figure that scares people sufficiently not to do this again.

    Good luck Michael. And don’t feel any pressure to comment or respond to any other allegations or character attacks. Continue to rise above it, as you’ve classily done here.

    • Annie says:

      Don’t pin this on women, that’s missing the problem entirely. The “too fast to tweet culture” is not a “woman” issue. It’s more like people in general have decided that social media is where to turn when they don’t have anyone to text in confidence or have completely turned off their filters. That said, these are serious allegations that regardless of the channel used to communicate the ask for help, should be investigated given the nature of the allegation itself.

      • Agreed, Annie. This is being done by woman AND men alike on social media. It just so happens that two women’s posts are what the public is glomming onto. Sad but true. It’s being blown up into a “women in tech” thing when it’s NOT in any way, shape or form.

  26. Steve says:

    @Kat Armstrong
    … there you go again! “… Steve – Hardly. Most of us …” — shows the “pack” mentality, the “unity of the sisterhood,” meaning that you gals would never, ever admit that a man could be right! Even when he IS! … because… yes, “women” are never wrong. You don’t even understand each other [no one does] however… Come on! “Lean In” and show how pathetic you look…

  27. Travis says:

    Just read the post where you put the letter and evidence. Wow. You won the crazy jackpot with that one.

  28. Poof. There goes her credibility.

  29. I hate when bloggers try to be lawyers says:

    If you are trying to defend against these allegations, a complete answer would have included your responses to all of these messages from her
    By focusing on mistakes on dates etc., you have convinced me that she has emotional problems and probably would go back to a realationship that was abusive if it is in fact true
    Damages? Do you really think someone is going to fire you or refuse to do business with you over this lovers quarrel right out of 50 Shades of Gray?
    Police? Seriously, they have real crimes to solve.

    • OyVey says:

      “I hate when bloggers try to be lawyers” – What about when they hire competent lawyers and then post the letter that their lawyers wrote?

      Idiot.

  30. Diana says:

    false allegations can result in direct and collateral damage. apparently defamation is not a crime–or so i was told. good luck! civil litigation is not cheap.

  31. On balance the allegations look self-delusional. The accuser needs metal help. Loren Feldman backs her story!.

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