It’s sad when people who crave attention insert themselves in important stories just to make it about themselves pic.twitter.com/PlvA3NQYo3
— Dave Portnoy (@stoolpresidente) October 11, 2017
I wasn’t going to share this, but recent events have made me realize how important it can be. Sorry, but I’m about to clog your timeline… I was offered a full time, 2 year deal over the summer. It would’ve been fun and it would’ve paid well. No brainer, right? They wanted me to sign this. I refused, for multiple reasons. I ultimately decided I didn’t want it, even if I was exempt from signing this.
This is not ok. And if you’ve never worked in media, know that it isn’t normal. I’ve never seen anything like it. Neither have most people. The crazy thing is, it’s probably not even enforceable. It’s likely meant to make people feel like they can’t speak up if something happens. That’s how things like this happen. Not always through contracts, but through a variety of ways in which people feel powerless to speak up.
I decided to walk, even if they removed it. How could I work for them, knowing it exists? But would I have walked, if I needed the money? Would I have if I didn’t have a completely separate career path that I love? I’d like to think so, but who knows. I’m lucky-not everyone is. I’ve built (privilege has helped) a safety net that allows me to be patient, and principled, about what I do. Not everyone gets to have that.
Whether it’s explicitly stated in contracts or not, too often, people are made to feel like they can’t speak up about the inexcusable. I made clear why I was walking, that this was offensive. I hope they’ve removed it, but I doubt it, since they didn’t seem to believe me. I haven’t been sexually harassed at work in years. But I remember the paralysis that accompanies it when you don’t think anyone would care.
When you don’t know what would happen to your job. When you don’t know if you would be able to get another, if you’re a whistle blower. I hope by having more conversations about these things, others will eventually not feel that paralysis. Because they know they’re not alone. Because they know we care. Because their careers are safe, regardless of inexcusable things that are not their fault. Because they did the right thing.