While very successful, Barstool Sports has had its fair share of controversy. The website’s writers and community have been accused of both sexual harassment and cyber-bullying. ESPN also cancelled a planned partnership with the Barstool Sports after airing just one episode of The Van.
Today, site founder Dave Portney is facing another controversy, this time due to threatening employees. After Portney threatened potentially unionizing employees, he was called out by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for his illegal behavior.
The drama began when Portnoy tweeted out an article he had written that was against union. This prompted a response from writer Rafi Letzter. Letzter wrote, “If you work for Barstool and want to have a private chat about the unionization process, how little power your boss has to stop you, and how you can leverage that power to make your life better: my DMs are open.”
Portnoy responded to Letzter’s tweet by writing, “If you work for Barstool Sports and DM this man I will fire you on the spot,”
The Barstool fouder was immediately mocked online by users who called out his threat as being illegal. One of the people who took interest in the threat was Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
The New York Congresswoman wrote, “If you’re a boss tweeting firing threats to employees trying to unionize, you are likely breaking the law &can be sued,in your words, ‘on the spot.’ ALL workers in the US have the protected freedom to organize for better conditions. See NLRB and union organizations like the AFLCIO for tips.”
If you’re a boss tweeting firing threats to employees trying to unionize, you are likely breaking the law &can be sued,in your words, “on the spot.”
ALL workers in the US have the protected freedom to organize for better conditions.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 13, 2019
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Todd Neikirk is a New Jersey-based politics and technology writer. His work has been featured in psfk.com, foxsports.com, and PoliticusUSA. An avid pet lover, he has been known to contribute to Pet Lifestyles Magazine. He enjoys sports, politics, technology, and spending time at the shore with his family.