This reporting is one of several scoops featured in this week’s edition of Confider, the newsletter pulling back the curtain on the media. Subscribe here and send your questions, tips, and complaints here.
A writer named on The Shitty Men in Media list has settled his lawsuit for a six-figure sum with the woman who created the infamous spreadsheet, Confider has learned.
The Adderall Diaries author Stephen Elliott sued columnist Moira Donegan for defamation after being accused of rape, sexual harassment, and coercion on the Google spreadsheet that was widely shared at the height of the #MeToo movement and accused upwards of 70 men of sexual misconduct.
“The lawsuit had gone 4 and a half years and would have gone 4 more years I think before going to trial,” Elliott told Confider via email. “They were doing everything possible to avoid defending their views in court so when they offered enough money I agreed to settle.”
Elliott said Donegan wanted a confidentiality clause which he did not agree to, describing it as a “Harvey Weinstein thing to ask for.”
And while he wasn’t successful in determining who had added him to the list, he suspects it was a woman he fired at the online literary magazine The Rumpus, which he founded.
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“Whoever put me on that list is deeply disturbed and Moira was taking advantage of people like that. I’m certain there is no one out there in this world who thinks that I raped them, and I’m certain that I never raped anyone. I don’t even like penetrative sex with women,” he told Confider.
When reached by Confider on Monday, Donegan said she couldn’t comment and referred questions to her attorney, Gabrielle Tenzer, who did not respond to a request for comment.
Elliott said his life has been “permanently changed” as a result of being on the list. He says he was fired by his agent while his publisher and editor publicly supported the list.
“Imagine, a non-profit publisher publicly supporting a media blacklist, even while telling me privately they knew I was innocent, and they believed other people on the list were innocent as well,” he told Confider.
“But there’s some closure here. It’s enough money that it’s basically an admission of guilt, and it feels like a victory. And most importantly it’s helped push back on false accusations and presumptions of guilt. Because believe it or not, ultimately I filed the lawsuit for moral reasons. I felt there was a moral obligation, and I don’t regret that at all.”
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