Three former Fox News executives said in a joint statement Wednesday that they deeply regret their roles in developing the network, which they now label a “disinformation machine.”
In a blog post titled “How Our Efforts to Bring Competition To Television Unknowingly Helped Create the Fox Disinformation Machine,” Preston Padden, Bill Reyner, and Ken Solomon expressed their "deep disappointment" in what their roles have amounted to.
“For what little it may, or may not, be worth at this point, Preston Padden, Ken Solomon and Bill Reyner wish to express their deep disappointment for helping to give birth to Fox Broadcasting Company and Fox Television that came to include Fox News Channel — the channel that prominently includes news that, in the words of Sidney Powell’s counsel, ‘no reasonable person would believe,'" they wrote.
The three said that the Fox News Channel “has had many negative impacts on our society,” and that “the worst has been Fox’s role in promoting Trump’s ‘Big Lie’ about alleged widespread fraud in the 2020 election” as well as “contributing to the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol that undermined our democracy.”
They also cited the network's settlement with Dominion Voting Systems, in which Fox was forced to pay $787 million for spreading former President Trump’s false claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election.
“We never envisioned, and would not knowingly have enabled, the disinformation machine that, in our opinion, Fox has become,” they wrote. “In a 120 page Court Order, backed by extensive record evidence including voluminous emails from inside Fox, the Judge in the Dominion case found that Fox repeatedly presented false news. Fox did not appeal the decision but instead acknowledged it and paid nearly $800 million in damages to Dominion.”
The executives noted that many former employees of Fox in its early days “share our resentment that the reputation of the Fox brand we helped to build has been ruined by false news.”