A Chicago-based ESPN Radio host says the sports network’s strict observance of its social media policy against political tweets, may have contributed to his firing after he posted a tweet calling President Donald Trump a racist.
ESPN host Ben Finfer reported to his followers that his contract would not be renewed for 2018 and, while the radio host already felt that his employment was in trouble, he said he thinks that his recent anti-Trump tweet tipped his firing over the line, according to The Big Lead.
“Last week on Twitter I used not-so-subtle terms to criticize President Trump for being racist, which is a violation of ESPN’s social media guidelines,” Finfer wrote in a December 15 Facebook post.
“It’s possible A would have been true even without B, but B obviously didn’t help my cause. And at the very least it made my dismissal effective immediately,” Finer added.
The fired host went on to claim that a listener to a local conservative AM radio station tattled about his posts to his ESPN bosses.
“Some troll running a Twitter account for a pro-Trump AM station in town reported me to ESPN bosses,” Finer theorized. “But my tweet was a violation of the guidelines and I posted it, so I can’t really blame someone else. I have deleted it because my (now former) boss, who I respect signigicantly [sic] more than the president, asked me to.”
“Regardless, I’m out,” he concluded.
Finfer can’t be too upset, though. As he hinted at in his Facebook announcement and as the Chicago Tribune confirms, he often shared his political opinions on Twitter. So, in the end, he was a constant violator of ESPN’s rule against overtly political social media posts.
In one recent post, for instance, Finfer agreed that Trump is an “unhinged racist,” and in another, he re-tweeted a tweet stating, “White House Begins Christmas Season With Ceremonial Lighting Of Cross.” Among other politically charged posts, he also posted support of Democrat Sen. Al Franken, and attacked former Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore.
Finfer’s politically-tinged social media posts may have been a final straw for his ESPN bosses, especially after the company’s recent mandatory, company-wide meeting to reiterate that social media posts with biased political content are not acceptable to management and that employees should avoid writing such posts.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston./i>