HBO and Max CEO Casey Bloys is speaking out after bombshell allegations earlier this week that he used bot Twitter accounts to troll and hit back at critics who gave negative reviews to programming on the network, according to a report by Rolling Stone.
During a presentation at HBO’s New York City headquarters, Bloys admitted to employing the tactic and talked about being a “very passionate” executive.
“I want the shows to be great. I want people to love them. I want you all to love them,” Bloys told attendees, per Variety. “So when you think of that mindset, and then think of 2020 and 2021, I’m home, working from home, and spending an unhealthy amount of scrolling through Twitter. And I come up with a very, very dumb idea to vent my frustration.”
Bloys then formerly apologized and explained that he has now progressed into “using DMs” when critics leave negative reviews of HBO and Max’s programs, and also noted that his initial method of using bot accounts was “not very effective.”
In the original report by Rolling Stone, a former executive assistant named Sully Temori claimed he was wrongfully terminated by the company and accused Bloys of exchanging text messages with Kathleen McCaffrey (HBO’s SVP of drama programming) that discussed the two using a “secret army” of fake accounts “to fire back at several TV critics on Twitter.”
Temori claimed that he was told by Bloys to make a troll account pretending to be a “vegan Texan mom” and was told to respond to negative tweets about shows such as “Perry Mason” and “The Nevers.”
In April 2023, HBO Max and Discovery+ merged to one uniform streaming platform simply called Max which lives under parent company Warner Bros. Discovery.
Warner Bros. Discovery was up just under 13% as of Friday afternoon.