Friday, May 04, 2007
Big corporation, big controversy
So now it's official. No more talk. Don Imus plans to take action.

His attorney, Martin Garbus, said today he'll file a breach of contract lawsuit against CBS Radio by the end of next week. We got a copy of the outline for the lawsuit. Imus will seek $120 million dollars for damages and other costs. That includes the $40 million dollars he says he's owed under his five-year contract with CBS Radio.

Imus' attorney says his client is due that money because of a clause in his contract that we told you about Wednesday night on "360." It says that CBS Radio acknowledges that Imus' services are "extraordinary", "irreverent", "controversial" and "desired".

CBS Radio plans to fight the lawsuit. It stands behind its decision to fire Imus last month for calling the Rutgers women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos." In a statement, CBS Radio said, "Based on the comments in question and relevant contract terms, we believe that the termination was appropriate."

Beyond the debate over Imus' comments, there's another issue at stake: Is this really all about big corporations calling the shots? Do they encourage controversy and then not acknowledge their role?

Tonight on "360," we'll cover all the angles, and we'll hear from Don Imus' lawyer.

When it comes to the money, what do you think? Should Imus get $120 million dollars? $40 million? Nothing? We'd love to hear from you on the blog. See you tonight.

-- By Anderson Cooper
Posted By CNN: 6:15 PM ET
I think CBS is a joke. They knew all along that Imus was saying all of this garbage. Yet they chose to keep him on air. Now that the contraversy has gotten SO out of hand they want to act like they knew nothing when actually they hired him to do just what he did.I hope he gets every dime he is seeking and then some!
Posted By Anonymous Cynthia, Covington, Ga. : 6:52 PM ET

Quite frankly, I don't really care how much money Imus should get or whether he should get anything at all.
I am afraid that whole things is ending up in a big charade that will absorb a lot of air time on all the newscasts, while there are much more important things to report on what's happening all around the world.
Why are we always so fascinated about celebrities and their lawsuits, fights, misbehavior, etc. rather than caring about the really important things that could have long-term and devastating impacts (remember 'Planet in Peril'?) for our lives and generations to come?
Posted By Anonymous Elke, SW Florida : 6:55 PM ET
Greetings Anderson,

Even though CBS Radio contracted for Imus' services to be of a "unique, extraordinary, irreverent, intellectual, topical, controversial, and personal character," aren't there limits? Surely CBS Radio did not intend to give Imus carte blanche, as seen when they fired him. And how did Imus and his lawyers arrive at the incredible figure of $120 million for damages and other costs? Why not $220 million? Where does it end? Imus should get nothing. Great reporting, Anderson! See you later.
Posted By Anonymous Helene Rochester, NY : 6:57 PM ET
Are on-air remarks insulting Jews and African-Americans to be considered merely "controversial and irreverent"? In some European countries hate speech is against the law. That CBS contract disgusts me, but I still don't think Don Imus deserves a dime.
Posted By Anonymous Barbara, Los Angeles, CA : 7:10 PM ET
I would be curious to know to what extent this kind of CYA clause is showing up in radio (and TV) personalities' contracts? Maybe all the good contracts lawyers are on to it now.
Posted By Anonymous Arachnae, Sterling VA : 7:18 PM ET
Dear Anderson,

Based on what you described on "360," I believe that Imus should get the $40 million dollars owed on his contract.

Not only were the words "extraordinary," "irreverent," and "controversial," deliberately written into the contract, but the fact that CBS saw fit to add "desired," in my opinion, is the linchpin. I may be mistaken, but I haven't heard about any "boundaries" listed in the contract. Imus probably should be entitled to court costs, and it could be argued that he deserves something for "damages," but I think he should be satisfied just to get his contract paid in full.

Big corporations do this all of the time. They are willing to take risks if they believe there are big profits to be made, no matter who it may hurt, and then they try to place the blame elsewhere. It's time for these corporations to take responsibilty for their actions.

I look forward to tonight's program.

Jo Ann
Posted By Anonymous Jo Ann Matese, North Royalton, Ohio : 7:18 PM ET
Wow, that's one big chunk of money. I'm not sure which is worse, Imus being a Big Kahuna or going for the Big Kahuna! If he does win this lawsuit, I sure hope he puts that money where his mouth is and donates it to the Rutgers Women's Basketball team.
Posted By Anonymous Jolene, St. Joseph, MI : 7:52 PM ET

CBS got more than they bargained for with Don Imus. I guess being controversial was okay until he attacked a bunch of young women athletes. Since Don's comments were in keeping with his contract, I think CBS should settle and pay him the $40 million. I'm gritting my teeth as I type this - $40 million is a LOT of money to pay someone for being offensive - I mean controversial. But they should not have to pay one penny more.
Posted By Anonymous Kay - Temple, TX : 7:56 PM ET
Interesting. Now he's a victim AND a marionette with CBS holding the strings.He reminds me of the one sporting the hat and poncho, sartorially speaking. Actually, both share the blame. Why should anyone be able to say vicious,libelous comments about anyone on the airwaves? Is there anyone who can be entertaining and still have some semblance of intelligence or decorum,if only occasionally? Dance into the sunset,'ole gringo.
Posted By Anonymous Carol B., Frederick, MD : 7:58 PM ET
Hi Anderson, I know nothing about legal contracts but common sense tells me that Imus's law suit is a slam dunk win according to the part of the contract that you have in your possession. If the courts say he was unfairly fired he should be compensated for all money lost because of his firing. It would be close to 140 million if he can't get another job.
Posted By Anonymous Judy StageBrooklyn MI : 8:00 PM ET
$120 million is outrageous. Even if it turns out the law sides with Mr. Imus because his contract with CBS Radio explicitly stated that the company expected him to be irreverent and controversial on his show, the amount is just ridiculous. Even the $40 million is absurd, but if that's what he's owed, that's what he's owed.

Thanks Anderson for blogging.
Posted By Anonymous Lilibeth, Edmonds, WA : 8:02 PM ET
In my opinion, Imus should receive nothing. Unless he was reading from a script provided by his corporate employer, he chose to speak the way he did.

And I assumed he realized his faulty judgment when he apologized.
I suppose his apology to the women he insulted wasn't sincere since he now thinks it was alright for him to speak in this manner.

While I feel Imus should receive nothing in compensation for being fired, it's time these corporate sponsors clean up the airwaves and demand responsible speech from all of the people they hire.

Imus should only be the beginning of the big clean up.
Posted By Anonymous Joseph Kowalski, North Huntingdon, PA : 8:04 PM ET
I don't think that he still deserves this money at any amount and please Mr. Anderson Cooper we are tired of this issue! sorry to say that.

regards to all staff and crew of AC360.
Posted By Anonymous Jemillex Bacerdo Chicago, IL : 8:05 PM ET
I'm sorry but if CBS was stupid enough to allow the contract Imus had to be worded the way it was, they totally have this coming. Imus was not new to controversy so I am surprised CBS would have a contract like this.

I'm guessing that Paris Hilton going to jail will be some big news on the show tonight. It all just seems too funny

Anderson welcome back to blogging more has been missed.
Posted By Anonymous Megan O. Toronto, ON, Canada : 8:07 PM ET
I'm not a lawyer however I see no reason to pay him millions to insult women and black people. No one ever paid me anything to lose a job!
Posted By Anonymous J DeLoache Nashville Tn : 8:10 PM ET
I'm not a lawyer however I see no reason to pay him millions to insult women and black people. No one ever paid me anything to lose a job!
Posted By Anonymous J DeLoache Nashville Tn : 8:10 PM ET
Two words: Settlement Conference.
Posted By Anonymous Marcia, Warren Mi : 8:11 PM ET
Hey Anderson,

First of all, I was surprise for about half a second that CBS Radio would put it in a contract that they wanted him to be "irreverent","controversial" and that it was "desired".
If a corporation is offering such contracts it's because there's an audience for such programs and that is sad.
Hey,maybe they should have listed in the contract all the insults he could or couldn't say!!It would have been much clearer. Pfff!!
Should he receive millions? I'll leave that to the lawyers. It's the company's money,I don't care.
But for your question;"Is this really all about big corporations calling the shots"? You bet!!! I'm sorry to say that,but all of you on the air are "disposable".And there will always be someone pushing in your back to take your place.
I don't think it is a good thing because some of you do great jobs.I'm not sucking up just putting the credit where it needs to be.
I hope CNN will keep you on for a long time.At least,on your show,there is no shouting match,no disrespect and no bashing people. There seems to be so many shows all about controversy,are we becoming so insipide????Don't forget,the corporations will go where they'll make money the most.

Have a good show tonight,Anderson.

Joanne R.
Laval Quebec
Posted By Anonymous Joanne R.Laval Quebec : 8:14 PM ET
Hi Anderson,
I think CBS admitted it all. They hired Imus to say and do offensive and rude things for ratings. I think CBS should own up to the $40 million they owe Imus for being "irreverent". 40 million is a lot of money to be paid for being nasty and rude to others. What a WASTE!
I believe they will have to pay Imus for breaking the contract. When they do, it is time for Imus to save face and donate that money to Oprah Winfrey's Leadership Academy Foundation in Africa, or Doctors without Borders, The World Wildlife Fund, American Cancer Society, or many other great causes.
That would make him look like a nice human being wouldn't it? I'd like him better! You know, that would probably make Imus feel better also. After all, a weed is no more than a flower in disquise.
Thanks Anderson.~
Posted By Anonymous Betty Ann, Nacogdoches,TX : 8:17 PM ET
If the contract flat out acknowledged that the content of the show was controversial and did not put any restrictions on what he could say, then it seems only logical that Imus is entitled to something, his livelihood was ripped away from him because of a few words ( though i'm sure he's wealthy enough to never have to work again) CBS never freaked out for other things he's said over the years, and I believe that if the sponsors hadn't pulled their support he'd probably still be on the air.
Posted By Anonymous Naomi Mac Millan, Island Park NY : 8:25 PM ET
This lawsuit rates right up there with the judge that is suing for loss of his pants at a dry cleaners which where actually misplaced NOT lost.

We don't know all of Imus' contract language just what his attorney wants us to know. We have become a society of people that want to sue everyone else. I guess Imus has time and money on his hands so why not give a lot away to his attorney. A normal person wouldn't have the option, they would already pounding the street for another job.
Posted By Anonymous Wynona, San Diego : 8:26 PM ET
Once the entire contract is made public, my view may change, but from the excerpted terms, I'd say that Imus is due the remainder of his contract salary -- that portion of the $40 million that has not already been paid.

While CBS is free to take an ethical stand on his conduct, business is business. Clearly what happened was, at the very least, foreseeable when Imus and CBS entered the contract. At most, the Imus comments were EXPECTED under the contract, if not outright endorsed.

As far as any other damages that Imus might be owed, you generally can't get punitive and emotional damages on a breach of contract claim. Furthermore, I think it would be hard for Imus to prove that he lost any other income due to his firing. If speaking opportunities and sponsorship deals suddenly dried up for him following the fracas, that's a result of what he said, not because CBS fired him for saying it.
Posted By Anonymous Michele Jackson, Northridge, CA : 8:35 PM ET
I also meant to add that he should get little to nothing because this seems like a bogus clause. However, to quote a famous line from the Bobbi Fleckman character in Spinal Tap,"Money talks and b.s. walks."
Posted By Anonymous Carol B., Frederick, MD : 8:35 PM ET
Hi Anderson,

The contract omitted a few terms... How about offensive, rude and just plain stupid? Imus was all of the above and I suppose as these terms are not in the contract then they have the right to fire him. People take things too far and this is a perfect case of that.

Imus totally took it too far and now he is taking it farther. Enough. There is a saying, "you play, you pay". Imus was going to continue to push the envelope further and further until someone said "when". CBS did so and now he is the victim? Please!

Admittedly corporations will try to get out of things whenever and wherever they can. That is a no brainer. But in this case I feel that they were justified. Just my opinion.

Thanks for listening Anderson. See you tonight.
Posted By Anonymous Pati McMillan, Camp Hill, PA : 8:41 PM ET
YAWN *rolls eyes*

Hey Anderson, what's my cut of the 120 million for having to listen to all this Imus stuff?

I never watched or listened to him before, why should I have to be subjected to this now?....on the evening news no less....when I don't care!

He's certainly NOT going to donate the money to anyone but maybe the Imus fund to get a decent haircut or a new hat.

Call me when Paris goes to socialite jail, *that* might be entertaining. I can't wait to see what colour her poncho will be. ;)
Posted By Anonymous Em, Toronto, Ontario, Canada : 8:54 PM ET
Hi Anderson,

I don't know how much money Imus should get. I think, though, like anyone else, he deserves a second chance (i.e. get his job back). I disagree with his choice of words but he did apologize. If Imus was African American, I don't think there would be all this hype.

P.S. Your show is great!
Posted By Anonymous Anna, Toronto, Canada : 9:03 PM ET

I think that Imus' firing was merely a case of CBS capitulating to outside perceptions, to do what would avoid them losing any more advertisers than they already had over this whole fiasco. As you said the other night, while talking to Jeffrey Toobin regarding Imus' contract with CBS, he was hired under the auspices of being controversial, and promoting "shock jock tactics", which he did. However, do I agree that he should be compensated for spweing mysognist, racially motivated remarks? Heck, no. However, I also believe that perhaps CBS should in fact be held accountable for hiring someone under such a contract in the first place, the only question is how? As far as Imus losing his career? As you and other anchors and broadcasters have said, you are all in a business where it is completely feasible to lose your job over ONE word, and Imus merely did it with a whole sentence. You know the risks, you take the risk, and you deal with the consequences, in the event that some come along. End of story.

Take care.
Posted By Anonymous Mandy, Boston, MA : 9:05 PM ET
A dumb, racist, and sexist man said a dumb, racist, and sexist thing. And, according to the contract excerpt mentioned the other day, Imus was expected to provide "intellectual" commentary (one of the words not in bold). CBS should win on that alone.

The problem is that stories like this where an idiot celebrity says an idiot thing get more coverage than the actual problems of racism, classicism, and sexism that affect us all. Real racism and classicism is why mostly poor, mostly black people had to hang onto their chimneys as the Katrina flood waters rose and were turned away on a bridge onto dry ground in a mostly affluent, mostly white neighborhood. Real racism is why the crisis in Darfur does not get the coverage a genocide of that magnitude--or any scale-- deserves. Real racism and classicism is why major corporations set up their polluting smokestacks in poor neighborhoods without proper government oversight requiring a few extra dollars be spent on lessening the pollution that harms the health of so many children (e.g., the high rates of asthma and allergies in poorer neighborhoods). Real sexism is the way rape survivors are sometimes--STILL!-- portrayed by defense, the media, and even some judges, and why so many members of the media will refer to rape as "had sex with...". Real classicism and racism is why we are failing --no pun intended--so many of our kids in public schools. Real racism is why the Bush administration had no problem making up a story that was clearly paper-thin as just a token reason to invade a country for our thirst for oil. Real classicism (and, to a certain extent, racism) is why so many of our brave troops, who often come from less-affluent backgrounds, were sent into a battle we never should have started without proper armor, planning, and backup. That same classicism and racism is why many of our wounded troops still have to fight...only, this time, it is to have their voice heard and get the quality care they deserve. Etc.

Are you seeing the pattern here? Real racism, classicism, and sexism is more subtle than an outrageous comment.

Real racism, sexism, and classciism is about those who do NOT have much of a voice. It is not about those who DO have a voice--undeservedly, in most cases--that the media is more than willing to put out over the airwaves as it will boost their ratings. Such is the media formula. Lather, rinse, and repeat, repeat, repeat...

And, yes, to a certain extent, real racism is why this very same CBS thought they would get away with creating a Survivor series where people were separated along racial lines. And, yes, real and still persistent, insistent, and consistent racism is why they DID get away with it.

Which is not to say that what Imus said isn't an example of real racism and sexism. It is. But it is not as important as talking about why people sat on their behinds as others sat on their rooftops.

Real racism is not whether some ____ (fill in the blank with your preferred expletive) gets $50 million dollars or whatever the outrageous figure is.

Real racism, classicism, and sexism is what we the people--and, yes, we the media-- allow to happen without giving it the proper voice.
Posted By Anonymous Norah, West Chester, PA : 1:10 AM ET
I'm sure that he'll be compensated for his loss in some way or another. The publicity alone is probably more than welcome.

And yes consider this the first comment about the duck in China remark. living on the wild side I see, lol. Great job
Posted By Anonymous Jemaul R. Hunter Savannah, Ga : 2:01 AM ET
I feel CBS is as responsible as Imus. They hired him because he is a Shock Jock and they got what they wanted. They enjoyed his his huge audience and ratings.If their sponsors hadn't pulled out he would be still there as ratings and bucks is the name of the game.

Why did it take CBS two weeks to decide to fire him without notice?
Because they were waiting to see if the sponsors were going to pull out and how much negative PR would surface. Due to his large image a few saw the chance to use him as an Example and jumped at it. Why not Keith Richards? Rosie O'Donnell? Mel Gibson? They didn't have a big enough bang.

Imus insulted young accomplished university female students and athletes. It was too good an opportunity for those wanting celeb status to refuse. We all feel Freedom of Speech is our democratic right. Freedom to listen is also our right and choice also. You also have the right to tune out. I hope Imus wins his suit as it is unjust to punish one so harshly and give all others a slap on the wrist. I never listened to Imus or even knew who he was until this episode err circus hit the air waves.
Posted By Anonymous Tricia Charlottetown PEI Canada : 2:12 AM ET
I wonder why CBS waited so long to get rid of the producer who was the one who said it first and then Imus embellished it.

I'm still trying to find the racial aspect to what he said. I know what "hos" are, and it's a nasty remark but not racial. Therefore, the racial part must be in "nappy-headed," and I don't know what that means unless it's referring to diapers which doesn't sound racial unless his intent was to conjure up an image like the woman on Aunt Jemima's pancake syrup.

Considering that I'd never even heard of Imus until this issue came up, I can only go on gut instinct which is that Imus should go for at least as much as the $65 million USD that the judge filed against the dry cleaner for losing his (the judge's) pants.

Only in America . . .
Posted By Anonymous Gypsy, an American in Mexico : 4:26 AM ET
He deserves the $120 million. It should all go to charities of the Rutgers Women's Basketball Team's choosing. And maybe CBS will think twice again before hiring someone so offensive, providing him with such a ridiculous contract, and then bowing down to its sponsors. I doubt it, though. Network news is entertainment, big bucks, and at the corporate level has so little to do with honest journalism its ridiculous. When the professional and personal lives of reporters and news anchors become fodder for entertainment rags, something is sorely wrong with the system. And that is the fault of networks who exploit their employers for a buck and consumers who buy into the hype. Someone who can't write an intelligent sentence will probably get a book deal worth millions out of this debacle. So, yes, corportate America is calling the shots in the world of media. They'll take their lumps because they'll rebound and make millions more off of it before this is all over. Quite honestly, CBS is making much more money and hype by the firing and lawsuit than they probably ever wold have keeping Imus on the air. So was that part of the game in itself?
Posted By Anonymous Tammy C., Berwick, LA : 10:53 AM ET
If losing this job led to poverty and homelessness, yes a suit would be warranted. However, since he doesn't need the money, and this is just an exercise in greed, then the lawsuit should not even be filed. Americans are known for frivilous lawsuits; it needs to stop somewhere.
Posted By Anonymous Deb, Richmond VA : 11:34 AM ET
Hey Anderson,
Cute little shot of the day. You remember, don't you? Ahh come on. All the way from china. The cute little puppy being followed by the fuzzy duckling who had imprinted on him? Well, thanks for reminding us that the cute little fuzzy duckling is going to be Peking duck soon!! See, this is why I have trouble eating flesh. I can never determine which FRIEND to eat! OH, I'm no saint, I eat meat, occasionally anyway. But, I have a question for you: Are they going to eat friend puppy too?
Posted By Anonymous Betty Ann, Nacogdoches, Tx : 12:04 PM ET
I'm not familiar with his contract, but it seems like he should get the $40 million he is owed plus legal fees. You shouldn't have to pay lawyers money to get the money that someone owes you.

$120 million is outrageous, but maybe he figures CBS will settle for the money that they owe him. I still feel like it's very hypocritical for CBS to fire Imus over what he said, considering the vile things he has been saying about every other race for a long time. If the anti-defamation league had sued or complained, would CBS have fired Imus or reprimanded him?

If they wanted him to change the tone of his program, they should have allowed him to do that, as he said he would. What he said was crude and irresponsible, but CBS has been turning the other way from these types of comments from him for a long time (and apparently encouraging them) and they couldn't take the heat when they were called to task.

CBS needs to live up to their end of the contract.
Posted By Anonymous Nestor, Austin, TX : 12:17 PM ET
Dear Anderson,

I do think Imus should be given the 40 million dollars he is owed by CBS for breach of contract. As to the rest of the money for "damages", well, I don't think he deserves THAT much money.

I am glad Imus is suing CBS. As much as his comments have been controversial over the years, I belivieve all of this nonsense over a few stupid and careless words said on the air are just that. If an African American had said those words on the air, I guarantee no one would have paid attention for even a millisecond.

Unfotunately, this whole debacle will have rippling effects over the entire media. The concept of freedon of speech has been tarnished and no one is safe anymore....

Anderson, thank you for all of your hard work and great reporting!!
Posted By Anonymous Lynda, Columbus, Ohio : 12:25 PM ET
Dear Mr. Cooper,
I realize my comment is late given that your program was on last night. However, why did you even run this topic? Mr. Imus and CBS do not contribute a single positive thing to society. Imus fills the airways with hate filled diatribe disguised in the form of toilet humor, which make stupid listeners drool like Pavlov's dogs salivating at the sound of a bell. CBS pays Imus to ring the bell. Why did you stoop so low to bring this on the air?
Posted By Anonymous Tasneem M., Atlanta, GA : 3:02 PM ET
Hi AC! Looks to me that CBS is going to have to pay big bucks to Don Imus. 120 million seems a little greedy. Imus should be happy with the 40 million that he would be working for, and call it a day. I hope he does something good with at least part of the money. Good luck to him. CBS seems to have been caught trying to pull a fast one. Yippee! I finally have the 360 podcast. Between the podcast and the blog, I shouldn't miss an exciting moment of 360! Horse show season starts this week. Have a great week-end! P.S. Enjoyed the LK special. He has had a colorful life and career. I wish him another great 50 years!
Posted By Anonymous Kathy Chicago,Il : 6:33 PM ET
CBS and Imus both got what they wanted. CBS made millions off of selling ad space around the spectacle that is Imus. Imus made millions being a spectacle. Imus put advertisers in a bad position, which forced CBS to fire him because CBS makes money off of advertising and nothing else. They also both got what they asked for - a spectacle got fired, and a greedy media company will have to pay out some of the money they made off their spectacle. Oh, and for those who are complaining about how abhorrent it is that CBS contracted Imus to be controversial, etc., just remember one things - in America, the media companies are a direct reflection of the populace, because they are make money by delivering what the people want to watch.
Posted By Anonymous Tim, Phoenix Arizona : 9:21 PM ET

I missed the show (family wedding to attend) but I don't know that I would change my mind based on what experts say. I don't think Imus is owed a dime because I don't see "mean and cruel" in the list of permisable comments. If he had said those things about an NBA team (he would be too big of a coward to do that) then they are public figures and can take care of themselves. However young women student athletes 18 or 19 years old should not be targets of media in this way.
Posted By Anonymous Charlotte D, Stockton CA : 1:27 PM ET
I suppose all this gossip will be fodder for the next sad joke--whoops, meant shock jock--who takes over Imus' $40 million job.
Posted By Anonymous Lauren, Wheeling, WV : 6:59 PM ET
Pay Imus the contractually agreed upong amount in his contract. "Shock jock" is exactly what the name implies. Besides, rappers and other African-Americans have been doing this type thing for years.
Posted By Anonymous Anthony, Dandridge, TN : 9:37 PM ET
That's entertainment! They build you up only to then trash you once they're done with you. Absolutely this is about big corporations not acknowledging their role and taking responsibility. They were more than willing to just slap him on the wrist with the two week suspension but when it comes to $$$$, yes, dollar signs, then it cost the man his job. That's what it's all about, THE GREEN. I think Imus did exactly what he was contracted for. And, I hope he gets fair compensation. Next time, corporations should clearly define irreverent and controversial if they want to exonerate themselves from all blame. Looking forward to your CSI report. See you tonight, Anderson.
Posted By Anonymous Mariela, New York, NY : 11:26 AM ET
All I can say is I miss him. There is no one who is on the air that can shine his shoes. I hope he gets all he sues for and more.
He is one of a kind and I am very proud of him and the way he conducts himself. With class and humility. I am forever in his corner.
Posted By Anonymous eileen vandernoot, yonkers, ny : 11:40 AM ET
Until the incident with the women's basketball team, I hadn't known of Imus's existence. I'm surprised that another station has not snatched him up just for all of this publicity alone. People love hearing things considered "taboo". Companies do encourage this type of behavior, but that is only because we love to soak it up. Look at the Baldwin(voicemail), P. Hilton(jail), and B. Spears(Hair/rehab) incidents. It's simply a new twist on an old saying. "If you can say something nice, then do something stupid and make others pay attention to you."
Posted By Anonymous Jemaul Hunter, Savannah Ga : 12:11 PM ET
CBS radio and MSNBC both made huge amounts of money from the entertainer Don Imus, and regardless of the self-serving opinions of Reverends Sharpton and Jackson, the reality is that this guy had a huge viewer base and was good business. CBS radio and MSNBC will lose all that revenue based on their decision to react to what should never have been such a “major issue”, but that is not where the penalty should end. Don and Deidre Imus used his show to promote their ranch for sick children and supporting a cure for autism (which people have failed to mention), and I’m afraid the end of his show spells the end of these two valuable public services, for which neither he nor his wife were paid. From a contract standpoint, Don Imus is entitled to lost wages and damages for the breach of his contract, but from a human standpoint, people should try to imagine having an 8 year old son with an elderly father who has been made to look like a bigot and fool, when he was paid to do that – as an entertainer. I will miss the interviews with all the politicians and authors, I will miss the humor, and I expect a large sum of any settlement will go to continue the Imus Ranch for Children in New Mexico. And as for money, where would Al Sharpton be without white people to portray as racist villains? Not as wealthy as he is today. So this isn’t about money, but about business, and CBS lost a lot of business revenue and should pat for violating the contract they wrote for Imus.
Posted By Anonymous Claude, Silver Spring, MD : 1:54 PM ET
I don't believe that any of the four words you refer to from Imus' contract could be defined as racist and/or sexist. This will all come down to an interpretation of language and intent. You can be irreverent and controversial without the language he used. He's practicing CYA(cover your...) as much as CBS is and I can't believe a court is going to waste time on this. The man isn't worth $1.20 let alone 120 million.
Posted By Anonymous Debbie, Denham Springs, LA : 2:09 PM ET
He should've never been fired in the first place. It was done only so CBS could attempt to prove a point, even if they lost all their advertisers. Now, they're at risk of perhaps losing even more money over firing him than if they would've left him stay (I'm only guessing on this because I'm not sure if the advertising would've made them $120million over 5 years).

This is what happens when people complain too much. They attack someone who knows how to play the system and all they're going to get is kicked in the face.

If he wins (which I hope he gets every penny of that $120 million), Don Imus will probably be laughing about it, as will many other people who think that this incident was taken way too far and too seriously.
Posted By Anonymous Daniel Grape, Pittsburgh, PA : 4:06 PM ET
This is all about how everyone EXCEPT whites has free speech in this country. Sad. It's "OK to be white!"
Posted By Anonymous Stan, Seattle, WA : 4:55 PM ET
I think he should receive the money. CBS knows what Imus is, what he does and why he has an audience. That's why they hired him. They've now destroyed his career to cover their own butts. It's cowardly and sad.
Posted By Anonymous Mike Sass, Denver, Colorado : 9:44 AM ET
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• 02/19/2006 - 02/26/2006
• 02/26/2006 - 03/05/2006
• 03/05/2006 - 03/12/2006
• 03/12/2006 - 03/19/2006
• 03/19/2006 - 03/26/2006
• 03/26/2006 - 04/02/2006
• 04/02/2006 - 04/09/2006
• 04/09/2006 - 04/16/2006
• 04/16/2006 - 04/23/2006
• 04/23/2006 - 04/30/2006
• 04/30/2006 - 05/07/2006
• 05/07/2006 - 05/14/2006
• 05/14/2006 - 05/21/2006
• 05/21/2006 - 05/28/2006
• 05/28/2006 - 06/04/2006
• 06/04/2006 - 06/11/2006
• 06/11/2006 - 06/18/2006
• 06/18/2006 - 06/25/2006
• 06/25/2006 - 07/02/2006
• 07/02/2006 - 07/09/2006
• 07/09/2006 - 07/16/2006
• 07/16/2006 - 07/23/2006
• 07/23/2006 - 07/30/2006
• 07/30/2006 - 08/06/2006
• 08/06/2006 - 08/13/2006
• 08/13/2006 - 08/20/2006
• 08/20/2006 - 08/27/2006
• 08/27/2006 - 09/03/2006
• 09/03/2006 - 09/10/2006
• 09/10/2006 - 09/17/2006
• 09/17/2006 - 09/24/2006
• 09/24/2006 - 10/01/2006
• 10/01/2006 - 10/08/2006
• 10/08/2006 - 10/15/2006
• 10/15/2006 - 10/22/2006
• 10/22/2006 - 10/29/2006
• 10/29/2006 - 11/05/2006
• 11/05/2006 - 11/12/2006
• 11/12/2006 - 11/19/2006
• 11/19/2006 - 11/26/2006
• 11/26/2006 - 12/03/2006
• 12/03/2006 - 12/10/2006
• 12/10/2006 - 12/17/2006
• 12/17/2006 - 12/24/2006
• 12/24/2006 - 12/31/2006
• 12/31/2006 - 01/07/2007
• 01/07/2007 - 01/14/2007
• 01/14/2007 - 01/21/2007
• 01/21/2007 - 01/28/2007
• 01/28/2007 - 02/04/2007
• 02/04/2007 - 02/11/2007
• 02/11/2007 - 02/18/2007
• 02/18/2007 - 02/25/2007
• 02/25/2007 - 03/04/2007
• 03/04/2007 - 03/11/2007
• 03/11/2007 - 03/18/2007
• 03/18/2007 - 03/25/2007
• 03/25/2007 - 04/01/2007
• 04/01/2007 - 04/08/2007
• 04/08/2007 - 04/15/2007
• 04/15/2007 - 04/22/2007
• 04/22/2007 - 04/29/2007
• 04/29/2007 - 05/06/2007
• 05/06/2007 - 05/13/2007
• 05/13/2007 - 05/20/2007
• 05/20/2007 - 05/27/2007
• 05/27/2007 - 06/03/2007
• 06/03/2007 - 06/10/2007
• 06/10/2007 - 06/17/2007
• 06/17/2007 - 06/24/2007
• 06/24/2007 - 07/01/2007
• 07/01/2007 - 07/08/2007
• 07/08/2007 - 07/15/2007
• 07/15/2007 - 07/22/2007
• 07/22/2007 - 07/29/2007
• 07/29/2007 - 08/05/2007
• 08/05/2007 - 08/12/2007
• 08/12/2007 - 08/19/2007
• 08/19/2007 - 08/26/2007
• 08/26/2007 - 09/02/2007
• 09/02/2007 - 09/09/2007
• 09/09/2007 - 09/16/2007
• 09/16/2007 - 09/23/2007
• 09/23/2007 - 09/30/2007
• 09/30/2007 - 10/07/2007
• 10/07/2007 - 10/14/2007
• 10/14/2007 - 10/21/2007
• 10/21/2007 - 10/28/2007
• 10/28/2007 - 11/04/2007
• 11/04/2007 - 11/11/2007
• 11/11/2007 - 11/18/2007
• 11/18/2007 - 11/25/2007
• 11/25/2007 - 12/02/2007
• 12/02/2007 - 12/09/2007
• 12/09/2007 - 12/16/2007
• 12/16/2007 - 12/23/2007
• 12/23/2007 - 12/30/2007
• 12/30/2007 - 01/06/2008

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