Ellen Degeneres’ is not all live, laugh, love. She’s toxic, too.
Former employee’s allege racist micro-aggressions, mistreatment, and an overall toxic work culture.
Ellen Degeneres bases her image on “being kind.” She is a multi-million dollar brand built on enormous acts of charity and on-screen interviews with celebrities.
An anonymous former employee recently dropped a bombshell and told BuzzFeed News “that ‘be kind’ bullshit only happens when the cameras are on. It’s all for show, I know they give money to people and help them out, but it’s for show.”
Ten former employees all asked to be anonymous for fear of retribution as part of the Buzzfeed exposé.
One walked off the job after tiring comments about her race, another was fired for taking medical leave, and another for bereavement to attend family funerals. Some employees had even been instructed to not speak to Ellen if they saw her in the office by their managers.
Though it is not Ellen directly, and the environment is caused by executive producers and overall senior management, it is ultimately her show and one previous employee said she needs to take responsibility for the staff she’s hiring that is causing the toxic atmosphere.
The executive producers of the show told Buzzfeed News in a statement that they take responsibility for the atmosphere:
“We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience. It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us. For the record, the day to day responsibility of the Ellen show is completely on us. We take all of this very seriously and we realize, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better,” they said.
A black female employee also said she experienced racist comments through her year working there.
Producers made comments about her braids, and a writer claimed he did not remember her name because they “only knew the names of the white people who work here.”
Unsurprisingly, when she was strong enough to speak out about discrimination, her colleagues ostracized her.
The straw that broke the camel’s back was when she asked for a raise after finding out a recent hire performing the same job made double her earnings, and all they said was they would see what they could do, and never did anything.
She stayed quiet about this until now, as Hollywood is having conversations about the toxic work environment that exists in the media and entertainment industry.
The stories multiple former employees share with Buzzfeed News is alarming at the very least.
Their entire ideal about being kind clearly does not extend to their employees or their work environment. Instead, what is recounted by ten different people are nightmare-like experiences which would leave anyone disheartened and looking for other career options.
In March, Kevin T. Porter tweeted a response to his comment with stories of Ellen being mean, which received over 2,600 responses about experiences with her personally.
Right now we all need a little kindness. You know, like Ellen Degeneres always talks about!
She’s also notoriously one of the meanest people alive
Respond to this with the most insane stories you’ve heard about Ellen being mean & I’ll match every one w/ $2 to @LAFoodBank
— Kevin T. Porter (@KevinTPorter) March 20, 2020