When CNN's Brian Stelter was in college and running TV Newser, Fox News wanted to scope out his opinions on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox — so they allegedly had a woman Stelter had a crush on at Fox News date him to try to get the scoop.
It sounds like the plot of a half-baked rom-com, but no. This is apparently real life.
Stelter revealed the story after news broke that former Fox CEO Roger Ailes had allegedly tried to dig up dirt on his enemies. "A lot of what [Gabriel Sherman's] reporting I think reporters have suspected for awhile," Stelter said on New Day, naming the New York reporter who has written several revealing expositions on Ailes. "I'll give you an example. About ten years ago, I had a crush on a woman at Fox News. She was a low level staffer. I was in college at the time. So I was going out on what I thought were dates."
But they allegedly weren't really dates. "She was actually reporting back to Fox News about me," Stelter said. "She was reporting back about what I thought of her and about CNN and MSNBC and Fox. Because I was a reporter on the beat, they were actually spying on me that way."
Stelter added that many reporters wouldn't have thought something like that was entirely out of line at the time, although it was later alleged that Ailes' "spying" went a lot deeper. Read Sherman's report in New York here, and listen to Stelter tell the story on New Day, via Media Matters.