Billboard, Hollywood Reporter Parent Company Announces Investigation After Daily Beast Report

The company that includes some of the country’s most influential entertainment media sites announced it was launching an investigation into whether its president interfered in stories about a record executive friend accused of sexual harassment. On Friday, The Daily Beast reported that John Amato, president of Hollywood Reporter-Billboard Media Group—the parent company of The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard, Spin, Stereogum, and Vibe—had sought to review a series of stories about his close friend, former Republic group head Charlie Walk. The articles, which contained extensive original reporting, were never published after Amato raised concerns, high-level sources said. In an internal all-staff memo on Monday, the co-CEOs of Valence Media, which oversees the entire Hollywood Reporter-Billboard Media Group, said that they had “commenced the process of appointing an independent third party to lead a comprehensive review of the situation.” According to the email, Amato had “embraced this path forward,” and supported the review. The company also announced that it would create a “mechanism for people to share their perspectives in a confidential manner.”