‘Chilling signal’ rips through CBS ranks over seizing of Catherine Herridge’s files and computers: report

A shocking report has emerged that CBS News seized all of journalist Catherine Herridge’s files, computers, and records after laying her off.

As previously reported, CBS News’ parent company, Paramount Global, announced the layoff of 800 employees earlier this month, including Herridge. That in itself was unexpected given her track record for producing stellar journalism.

But even more shocking is a new report from legal scholar Jonathan Turley revealing that CBS News has also taken “the unusual step of seizing her files, computers and records, including information on privileged sources.”

“For many of us who have worked in the media for decades, this action is nothing short of shocking,” Turley wrote on Thursday for The Hill. “Journalists are generally allowed to leave with their files. Under the standard contract, including the one at CBS, journalists agree that they will make files available to the network if needed in future litigation.”

“That presupposes that they will retain control of their files. Such files are crucial for reporters, who use past contacts and work in pursuing new stories with other outlets or who cap their careers with personal memoirs,” he added.

According to Turley, this unexpected, draconian move by CBS News has alarmed many within the organization, including its union.

He reported speaking confidentially with current and former CBS employees who all said that CBS News has never once before seized a reporter’s files and records after laying them off.

“A former CBS manager, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, said that he had ‘never heard of anything like this,'” Turley revealed. “He attested to the fact that, in past departures, journalists took all of their files and office contents.”

“Indeed, the company would box up everything from cups to post-its for departing reporters. He said the holding of the material was ‘outrageous’ and clearly endangered confidential sources,” according to Turley.

One former CBS journalist further stated that many of the network’s current employees are also “confused why [Herridge] was laid off,” given as she’d been “one of the correspondents who broke news regularly and did a lot of original reporting.”

While Herridge has not yet spoken out about what happened, a source within the union, SAG-AFTRA, confirmed to Turley that they’ve raised concerns with CBS News about this whole matter — which they believe is ‘very unusual” and extends beyond just Herridge’s layoff.

“It is a matter of principle,” a union spokesperson said. “It is a matter of serious concern. We are considering all of our options.”

Concerns are also being raised about the timing of Herridge’s ouster.

“She was pursuing stories that were unwelcomed by the Biden White House and many Democratic powerhouses, including the Hur report on Joe Biden’s diminished mental capacity, the Biden corruption scandal and the Hunter Biden laptop,” according to Turley.

“She continued to pursue these stories despite reports of pushback from CBS executives, including CBS News President Ingrid Ciprian-Matthews,” Turley noted in his report.

As previously reported via the New York Post, Ciprian-Matthews is a “woke” loon who’d once been accused of “using her clout to promote minorities while unfairly sidelining white journalists — a ‘woke’ and ‘divisive’ practice that sparked multiple employee complaints and a major internal probe.”

Below is an example of Herridge’s reporting:

Complicating the matter is the reported fact that the files CBS News seized also contained some of Herridge’s work from Fox News, where she worked prior to switching to CBS News in 2019.

“These files may contain sources who were given confidentiality by Herridge. The company is suggesting that the privilege of confidentiality (and the material) rest ultimately with CBS,” Turley wrote for The Hill.

“As a threshold matter, that cannot be the case with regard to files that were generated during Herridge’s long stint with Fox News. Yet CBS appears to be retaining those files, too,” he added.

But it gets worse.

According to Turley, CBS News has also suggested it’ll “allow unnamed individuals to rifle through Herridge’s files to determine what will remain with the network and what will be returned to the reporter.”

“That could fundamentally alter how reporters operate and how willing sources are to trust assurances that they will be protected,” Turley noted.

Vivek Saxena


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

Latest Articles