Katie Way, a 22-year-old reporter at Babe.net, garnered widespread media attention earlier this week for her piece about an anonymous woman’s traumatizing sexual encounter with comedian Aziz Ansari. In the article, the woman (dubbed “Grace” to protect her identity) describes her date with Ansari in painstaking detail to Way, recounting how he pressured her into sexual situations that made her uncomfortable, repeatedly ignoring her “nonverbal” cues.
The interview subsequently went viral, prompting both support and outrage from online communities, as well as a public apology from Ansari, who believed the encounter had been “consensual.” Reputable publications such as The Atlantic ran opinion pieces trashing the story as nothing more than “revenge porn,” and many berated Babe.net for sloppy editorial standards.
— The Atlantic (@TheAtlantic) January 15, 2018
HLN’s Ashleigh Banfield criticized Ansari’s accuser on the air, saying “I’m sorry you had a bad date,” but that “Grace” had no basis to claim victimization.
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) January 16, 2018
HLN apparently extended a subsequent invitation for Katie Way to appear on Banfield’s show, “Crime & Justice.”
Way responded by writing an angry and vitriolic email which did more than simply declining the offer. The writer took Banfield and HLN to task for criticizing “Grace,” calling Banfield a “burgundy lipstick, bad highlights, second wave (sic) feminist has-been.”
The email went viral after a Babe editor sent a copy to Business Insider‘s Max Tani.
Here's the full email the https://t.co/YZ14Jca6FS reporter who wrote the Aziz Ansari story sent when asked to go on HLN with @TVAshleigh. It is really something.https://t.co/qTca5xA9m0 pic.twitter.com/usZBm0KnIr
— Max Tani (@maxwelltani) January 17, 2018