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Fox News alleges Tucker Carlson breached contract with Twitter show

Fox personality Tucker Carlson speaks at the 2017 Business Insider Ignition: Future of Media conference in New York, U.S., November 30, 2017. -Reuters 

According to Axios, Fox News has notified Tucker Carlson’s legal team that the former prime-time host violated his contract with the network by launching his own show on Twitter. Carlson, who had been temporarily taken off the air by Fox News following a defamation lawsuit over false claims of election fraud, released the inaugural episode of his new show on Tuesday.

Bernard Gugar, the general counsel for Fox News, sent a letter to Carlson’s legal team asserting that Carlson’s actions constituted a breach of his contract. The letter referred to a clip of his new show posted on Twitter, which prompted the network’s response.

In defence of Carlson, his lawyer stated that any legal action taken by Fox News would infringe upon his client’s First Amendment rights to free speech, as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. The lawyer, Bryan Freedman, emphasised that Fox News relies on the grounds of freedom of speech for its own existence. Freedman’s statement, cited by Axios, highlighted the contradiction in Fox’s position, claiming that the network seeks to curtail Carlson’s right to express his thoughts on current events via social media.

Axios obtained a copy of the letter sent by Fox News, which made reference to Carlson’s contractual obligations. It stated that the former prime-time star was explicitly prohibited from providing any type of service, whether through streaming, internet distribution, or any other digital means, whether currently known or developed in the future.

At the time of reporting, Fox News had not responded to a request for comment regarding the matter. The controversy surrounding Carlson’s Twitter show has brought contractual obligations and freedom of speech into the spotlight.

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