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Veteran Fox executive Darlene Tipton fired over Flight MH370 email


NEW YORK (AP) - A veteran Fox executive who used her company email account to plan aid for loved ones of the missing Malaysian airplane's passengers has been fired.

Darlene Tipton, who was vice president of standards and practices for the Fox Cable Networks Group, said Saturday she had wanted to arrange swift financial aid to families and other loved ones, sparing them lengthy court fights. She said she began by emailing Sarah Bajc, an American whose boyfriend, Philip Wood, was a passenger on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 and who has made frequent TV appearances since the plane's March 8 disappearance.

Fox spokesman Scott Grogin said Tipton's "conduct and communications" violated company policy. Citing privacy concerns, he declined to discuss particulars, but he said, "As soon as we became aware, we took appropriate steps." He confirmed that Tipton has left the company.

Tipton was with Fox for a quarter-century before her April 9 dismissal. She said she plans to continue with her initiative, soliciting contributions through the crowdfunding website GoFundMe.

"We want to raise money for families, to give them immediate relief," Tipton said during a phone interview from her Los Angeles home. "Otherwise, they could be in court for years."

A condition of accepting the money she hopes to raise: Recipients must waive the right to seek legal remedy.

"If they're getting money through contributions," she said, "it isn't right for them to seek money through legal channels, too."

But she plans to sue Fox for wrongful termination, said her husband, Ken Tipton, a writer and producer.

He said the idea for the fundraising effort stemmed from his Los Angeles hospital stay last month, shortly after the plane disappeared. He said that while he was under medication he had hallucinations of being with the plane's passengers and the power of his visions spurred him and his wife to try to help.

"She wanted to do it because it could be done," he said. "So why not try?"

The investigation into what happened to Flight 370, a Boeing 777 that was en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board, continued Saturday with searches of a patch of the Indian Ocean seabed.

Tipton's firing was first reported by Christine Negroni in her blog Flying Lessons.

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lamarlord7 April 21 2014 at 2:27 PM

If it were an American flight...no issue

Flag Reply +2 rate up
vrf19977 April 21 2014 at 2:55 PM

No good deed goes unpunished. Sad, but true.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
josbornemadera April 21 2014 at 3:00 PM

Is Frazier sounding a bit ...gleeful...hmm..a little involved? "A quarter -century".

Flag Reply +2 rate up
Ine Azcuy April 21 2014 at 3:00 PM

Another example of why the word "loyalty" has unfortunately been removed from the work-front..... Standards and Practices my ______!!!!!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
bytebroker April 21 2014 at 8:07 PM

Being a do-gooder is not the issue here, what is at issue is that she potentially exposed her employer to controversy without giving them the opportunity to sanction it. It's not a moral issue, it's about ethics and a person who achieved her level of employment and had been there that long should have known better. If she used a personal e mail account she would not have been let go. Really poor judgement on her part given the fact that there was such a simple solution to avoid this mess.

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1 reply
olvden bytebroker April 21 2014 at 9:21 PM

Most of those who are defending her haven't a clue about working in the real world. IF they have employers, they'd also be hustled out the door if they tried the same thing.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
gudtip April 21 2014 at 8:01 PM

every company have a set of rules that must be met

Flag Reply +7 rate up
dohcman April 21 2014 at 7:43 PM

Well, I guess that this is yet again another example of "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished"!

Unfortunately going by the rules and only by the rules, while trying to do a decent thing, Darlene should have known better especially being a “VP of Standards And Practices” for a major Broadcasting company.

Company email is just that: "COMPANY EMAIL” good, bad or indifferent, whatever is said is the property of the company and when you are a corporate executive, you have to play by those rules. I hate like hell to say it but she is 100% wrong. After 25 years, I think they should have really slapped her hand extra hard and left it at that but corporate America these days rules with a very heavy hand when its executives act this way.

Sorry Darlene, I really am with you on this one but you should have used your own private account, not your business one.

Tough love on this one............... : (

Flag Reply +8 rate up
Mik's $ Toy April 21 2014 at 7:36 PM

Even a Supreme Court Justice has said that ppl are getting bits and pieces of news that do not tell the entire story and should not rely on tv news channels for the bottom line

Flag Reply +4 rate up
Blessed April 21 2014 at 3:06 PM

"Double Dipping " or not, I don't like the sound of this " help " she's offering; so if Families accept immediate help now, they cannot recieve any benefits of a mass law suit settlement later? Obviosuly they need help now-many of the missing were financial providers! This kind of sounds like she's dangling a life raft over a drowning victim but also saying " if you accept this help now-don't look for payment from the cruise ship when the suits settle seven years from now". Not a nice thing to do to a group of desperate, upset people. Not saying she should have been fired but then again, I wouldn't want her representing any company I helped build.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
fernandezarthr April 21 2014 at 3:12 PM

.......It is a Policy!,.......what you people don't Understand!!!.......

Flag Reply +4 rate up
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