Tavis Smiley: Media 'painting with too broad a brush' on sexual misconduct coverage

Talk show host Tavis Smiley says the media is painting with "too broad a brush" on stories of sexual misconduct, allegations of which led to his firing at PBS. 

“The media is painting with too broad a brush,” Smiley told the Associated Press on Tuesday. “We have lost all sense of nuance and proportionality in how we cover these stories.”

Smiley, the longtime host of his self-titled show on PBS, said the network made a "huge mistake" in his initial suspension. He acknowledged that he had had consensual sexual relationships with subordinates, but denied the accusations of sexual misconduct leveled against him.

Smiley told the AP that by speaking publicly about his relationships with female co-workers he could help the media differentiate between his case and other allegations of harassment, assault and rape that have brought down prominent lawmakers and media personalities in recent weeks.


"The inquiry uncovered multiple, credible allegations of conduct that is inconsistent with the values and standards of PBS, and the totality of this information led to today’s decision,” the network said in a statement earlier this month, citing the relationships as the main reason for his firing. 

Smiley admitted that the work environment at the network was "intense" but denied that he showed favoritism toward any employees or touched them inappropriately. Co-workers accused Smiley of creating a hostile work environment.

The host's firing comes after longtime media personalities, including PBS's Charlie RoseCharles Peete RoseRepublican Ohio Senate candidate slams JD Vance over previous Trump comments Super PACs release ad campaign hitting Vance over past comments on Trump Cuomo investigation returns spotlight to workplace harassment MORE, have been fired over sexual misconduct allegations.