Here's Why Fox Had to Fire Bill O'Reilly

I recently spoke to NBC about Fox News Channel’s firing of Bill O’Reilly, which stirred up the public’s interest and indignation.

21st Century Fox, the parent of Fox News Channel, said in a statement, “After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel.”

It’s no shock that Fox took action quickly, even though The O’Reilly Factor has long been its top show.  The brand set a precedent nine months ago, when Fox News and Fox Television Stations Group founder and former CEO and chairman Roger Ailes was ousted due to a sexual harassment lawsuit from former anchor Gretchen Carlson and the scandalous claims that followed from an additional two dozen women.

Bill O’Reilly Responds

O’Reilly’s response was that the sexual harassment claims were unfounded.  Whether or not the claims are substantiated, O’Reilly, like all public figures, has to face the consequences of being found guilty in the court of public opinion.

The New York Times reported that five women, including guests and employees of the show, had been paid $13 million in settlement for sexual harassment claims.  These days, advertisers and viewers demand transparency and have almost zero tolerance for anything but.  They hold networks up to the same moral standards – so Fox made the right choice to quickly fire O’Reilly.  It had to be done.  Fox’s reputation was tarnished after the Roger Ailes scandal, and the brand had no choice but to get any more corruption out.

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States.

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Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States. With over 20 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America's most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company's growth, overseeing more than 175 professionals in the company's headquarters in midtown Manhattan. With clients spanning corporate, technology, consumer and crisis, in addition to digital marketing and public affairs capabilities, 5WPR is regularly recognized as an industry leader and has been named "PR Agency of the Year" by the American Business Awards on multiple occasions. Throughout his career, Torossian has worked with some of the world's most visible companies, brands and organizations. His strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards 2020 Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, Metropolitan Magazine's Most Influential New Yorker, and a 2020 Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider. Torossian is known as one of the country's foremost experts on crisis communications, and is called on to counsel blue chip companies, top business executives and entrepreneurs both in the United States and worldwide. Torossian has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly on CNN & CNBC, was named to PR Week's "40 under Forty" list, is a contributing columnist for Forbes and the New York Observer, and his book, "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations" is an industry best-seller. A NYC native, Torossian lives in Manhattan with his children. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and active in numerous charities.