My Statement Regarding the Lawsuit

June 6th, 2012 | 96 Comments | Posted in Uncategorized

On June 1, 2012, the producers of The Bachelor Series finally dismissed their frivolous lawsuit against me. However, to get the suit dismissed, I had to agree to state on this website that neither I, nor Reality Steve, LLC would “initiate” contact, directly or Indirectly, with any Cast, Crew, and/or other Employees of the Bachelor concerning any non-public details of the Bachelor series.

This all began last October/November when I contacted three of Ben’s girls – Jaclyn Swartz, Casey Shteamer, and Emily O’Brien – via email and offered them compensation in return for information regarding the show. Why those three? I had Jaclyn and Emily’s emails by just doing a Google search, and Casey S I contacted through Facebook when I saw her page was turned on shortly after she returned home from filming. I left Casey S one email on her Facebook page (because I knew about the boyfriend situation and wanted to see if I could get her side of the story), when I didn’t hear back, three days later I went to send her another email and her Facebook page was shut off. That’s the only contact I’d had with her. Both Jaclyn and Emily received my emails and both responded back to me within 24 hours telling me they couldn’t help me out because they didn’t want to get in trouble. I prodded with a few more emails after that to each of them (which have been highly publicized when the story first broke), yet, neither of them took me up on my offer. I never paid either of them for anything, nor did either of them give me any information.

On November 22nd 2011, I received an email from the lawyers representing the production company behind the “Bachelor” series notifying me, among other things, that (this is a direct cut and paste from that email):

We currently are in possession of evidence of your attempts to induce former participants from the Bachelor Series to breach their contracts with NZK Productions, Inc. for the sole purpose of divulging highly confidential story-lines and information on your website. Specifically, we have several emails from participants wherein you admit you are aware of their confidentiality obligations, and nonetheless offer them compensation to disclose information in breach of their contract.

We further understand that you intend to post more confidential information imminently, i.e. spoilers, on your website regarding the upcoming season of “The Bachelor.” We must assume that the disclosure of such information is the product of your campaign to interfere with our participants contracts.”

When I received the email, I immediately contacted my lawyers asking what I should do. I knew that none of the information I had received and was going to spoil had come from any of the three girls I contacted, nor did it come from anyone under contract. Hell, their lawyers even used the word “assume” in their email. They assumed because they had the emails of me offering to pay their contestants for information, that that’s where my spoilers must’ve come from. Well, they assumed wrong. Until the end of time, myself, Jaclyn, Casey S, and Emily will tell you til we’re blue in the face that neither of them ever gave me any spoilers about their season. They were too scared to get in trouble. And even after offering monetary compensation to them, they still didn’t tell me a thing. Was there anything illegal about offering money for information? No. Was it a dumb decision on my part? Seven months later and with a fat legal bill I have hanging over my head, I’d say the answer to that would be “yes.” I was coming off a successful and profitable year on my website and I just figured “Why not just go directly to one of the contestants and see if they’ll tell me something if I offer them money?” It was a stupid, dumb, idiotic move on my part that ended up backfiring. I’d never done it before, and I’ll never do it again. Do I wish Jaclyn, Emily, and Casey S hadn’t turned over my emails? Of course. Am I mad at them for it? Not at all. Sure, I was asking myself why they did it, but it doesn’t matter. I shouldn’t have sent the emails in the first place. I mean, did you see what I wrote about Emily all last season? Knowing full well that since November she had turned over my emails, I never held it against her and she’s still one of my favorite contestants ever on this show.

The biggest point of contention I want to make out of this whole lawsuit is that I have never paid anyone for any information I’ve ever given on this site. Did I try to last season? Yes. Was I successful? No. I emailed three girls, offered compensation, and was rejected by two of them, with the other never even bothering to respond. The ironic thing is, as you know because I said it many times, I had the beginning and ending to Ben’s season nailed. Go look at the spoilers in case you forgot. It was the middle episodes – Utah, Puerto Rico, Panama, and Belize – that my information was a little sketchy, and that’s what I was looking to fill in, and that’s what I wanted to see if Jaclyn, Emily, or Casey S would help me with. If people under contract were feeding me information, wouldn’t I have every detail of every single season nailed down and never be wrong about anything ever?

When the story broke, of course the producers leaked the contents of my emails to those three girls to make it look like I’ve been doing this every season to every contestant I could get a hold of. Absolutely 100% false. What they didn’t care to reveal to the public in that initial story, was that on November 23rd (the day after receiving my first notice about them being in possession of the emails), I immediately wrote Jaclyn, Casey S, and Emily an email back stating,

“This is to notify you that I have received a letter from attorneys for the production and distribution companies for The Bachelor program threatening to sue me if I were to publish confidential information about the show that you allegedly provided to me. This will confirm that you have NOT provided me with any confidential information about the show. Additionally, I hereby withdraw any prior request that you do so. Best wishes with the show.”

I immediately backed off and that was that. Trust me, if I were to have paid any of them, or I had gotten my spoilers from either of them, and their lawyers were now in possession of those emails, I would’ve responded to the suit differently. But I knew my spoilers didn’t come from them, so I continued on as usual.

On December 5th I tweeted out that I was going to be revealing the final four to Ben’s season the next day. Within hours, my lawyers received an email from opposing counsel stating that if I were to go ahead and do this, they would take further action. Since I knew that info didn’t come from anyone under contract, I spoiled the final four the next day. Then the paperwork arrived that they had filed a lawsuit against me in California Federal Court for “tortious interference.” A week later, I spoiled the ending of Ben’s season because, once again, I knew it wasn’t given to me by anyone under contract, and what were they gonna do? Sue me? They already had.

So that’s how it all started. These last seven months have been pretty taxing on me for the sole reason that I knew I didn’t do anything wrong, but, that I was going up against a corporation that had way deeper pockets than me. I knew in the long run I couldn’t compete with them financially. I needed to make a decision that was best for me and for RealitySteve.com. I saw where this was headed, how many more months and hours my lawyers would have to spend defending this, and the costs behind it. The opposing side was going to continue to drag this through the legal system because money isn’t an issue for them. I thought, as well as my lawyers, that we eventually would’ve won this case. There was no tortious interference done here. There was no money exchanged with those women, there was no information exchanged with those women, and I don’t think there’s any way they could’ve proven I damaged their show. If anything, what I do only adds viewership to their show. They know that, I know that, and you know that. If I knew 1000% that I’d win a countersuit and win my legal fees back, of course I would’ve continued to fight it. But there was no guarantee of that and I wasn’t willing to take that chance. Do I sit and fight this for possibly another 9-12 months, rack up an enormous legal bill and win the case, or cut my losses now, sign an agreement that allows me to continue to do what I do, and just deal with what my legal fee balance is now, knowing it won’t increase? I did not want to be a 37 year old guy with a six-figure legal bill hanging over my head, so I did what I felt was right. Since January, opposing counsel has been sending over numerous Settlement agreements they wanted me to sign, but I wasn’t comfortable with the language they were using. Which is why I continued to fight as long as I did and asked for donations. I wasn’t going to sign something I wasn’t comfortable with, but every day this case continued, the more the legal fees increased. They were trying to get me to sign something that completely favored them, and ultimately, would end up being the end of RealitySteve.com. I refused to back down and sign something like that.

However, in this latest Agreement, they conceded a few things they hadn’t before, I conceded a few things, and I felt comfortable signing it. I can continue to do what I do, I don’t owe their side a penny, and RealitySteve.com continues on. If this Agreement that I just signed was presented to me six months ago, I would’ve signed it then. That’s how confident I feel in it. There’s really no need to get into all the specific details of the Agreement, other than to say I plan to abide by it, and as long as I do, there won’t be any future litigation brought against me. This Agreement does not prevent me from spoiling the show, and I will continue to do so like I have for the past three years.

Thank you to everyone for your patience in this matter. I know you probably have a lot of questions, and I will answer what I feel I can, but because the production company behind “The Bachelor” have already filed a frivolous lawsuit against me, I do not want to give them an alleged excuse to file another. I will abide by the agreement that I signed and not initiate contact with people under contract about non-public information concerning the show. Other than that, it will be business as usual. Thanks to all those who donated to my legal defense fund over the last few months. It definitely helped making a dent into what I owe my lawyers and to hold out for a more acceptable agreement, but I will take it from here and pay the remaining balance myself.

Thanks for your time, and I’ll be back tomorrow with “Reader Emails,” “Dr. Reality Steve,” the reports circulating about Roberto as the next “Bachelor,” plus US Weekly attacking Emily in this week’s issue. See you then.

96 thoughts on “My Statement Regarding the Lawsuit

  1. Congratulations on the resolution. As a lawyer who practices a lot in the First Amendment area, I’m glad to see that you were able to reach a settlement that allows you to continue to do what you do.

  2. “This all began last October/November when I contacted three of Ben’s girls – Jaclyn Swartz, Casey Shteamer, and Emily O’Brien – via email and offered them compensation in return for information regarding the show. ”

    ….. and the truth is finally revealed. You made such a big “to do” about NEVER EVER EVER having PAID anyone relevant to this show for information. What you didn’t say was that you HAD made an offer to do just that, and not only were you rejected but you were also turned into ABC for doing so.

    Shady.

  3. @ klalaw – Since you’re a lawyer, what would stop ABC from putting EVERYONE involved with the show under a contract where they can’t talk. The camera men, the people who clean the house or prepare the food, the drivers, the people at the night clubs or stores they visit. I know when they take it to a public place like when Emily was dancing with Ryan they can’t force everyone in that room to be under contract but it sounds like it’s coming from someone who works every season and someone who they could force a contract on.

  4. Jeez Cammie…..get over it! He never lied to you, doesn’t owe you any explanations, and doesn’t have to tell ANYONE about where he gets his info or how he goes about getting it. So what? He tried to get it that way and failed. After all the legal mess, I’m sure he’s learned a lesson about it and won’t do that again. But I have no doubt he’ll still get his info. He didn’t HAVE to post this explanation telling the gruesome details about his failed attempt, but he chose to do so now. He was humble about it. Shows integrity to me. Again, he doesn’t owe you anything. But then again, haters gonna hate and never going to be satisfied unless they’re making everyone around them seem to be beneath them. I think you’re one of those people.

  5. agree with Cammie. He does owe people an explanation considering he was asking for donations. He acted like he was so innocent during the whole law suit but in reality (no pun intended) the law suit was based on a fact that actually happened (fact: the email to contestants for information in exchange for money). And there is reason to be believe that if he did it once, he has done it before. I wouldn’t care one way or another if he wasn’t asking for money, but to claim 1st Amendment rights as his defense when in fact he is the reason that this law suit exists isn’t right and is downright shady. So glad I did not donate.

  6. What he did was kind of shady yes. However, at least he admitted that he was wronging in doing what he did. Everyone makes those stupid mistakes that we later wish we didn’t. But it takes a lot to admit that mistake, shallow your pride and apologize.

  7. @rollingeyes – you are 100% absolutely, positively correct! @cammie99, you are just damn lucky (as we all are), that Steve explained as much as he did. He had to put out on this site that he wouldn’t initinate any contact with cast, crew etc affiliated with the show, but nothing more. Instead, he chose to provide details, and for that, I admire him.

    Now, get off your freaking high horse, and STOP putting the man down! If you think Steve is so “shady”, then by all means, feel free to leave, on a permanent basis preferably.

  8. I agree with Cammie. Steve always insisted that he never offered to pay anyone, and that was all lies from abc. Wow. Truth revealed, and Steve is full of sh!t.

  9. What really gives me a laugh is how many haters comment after every column Steve posts. They do realize they only increase the number of hits to his website, therefore putting more money in his pockets? Why you would waste your time logging on to a website, reading, and then taking time to write how much you hate it is simply incredible. Keep up the good work Steve. Many of us really appreciate it.

  10. FYI Cammie was not “putting the man down” she was simply calling the man out. There is no “high horse” involved…just calling BS when BS is due. Why are people so outraged that we are calling him out? The man freaking lied and asked for your hard earned money to help dig himself out of his lie.

  11. Presumably, many of you come to RS for the spoilers. Some love the recaps and the emails from readers, but most people want the spoilers and backstories. Haters, like Cammie, come here for the spoilers and when Steve doesn’t post them fast enough (because he waits until info confirmed), they heckle him. I think Steve does a great job, and am glad the lawsuit is behind him. The donated fees were also in response to so many people asking “what they can do to help him.” If you wanted to help, great. If not, great too. Steve runs a high quality *free* site and I agree that he did nothing wrong. Even if he did offer to (or even if he had) paid anyone, who cares? How do you think all the big network shows get their exclusive interviews with celebrities? Not for free. He did not even need to lay out the whole lawsuit saga either. He does it because he is an honest and hardworking person.

  12. I agree with Cammie too, he lied to his readers and asked them to cover his legal fees, how many shades of wrong is that? It’s people like Dianne and rollingeyes that think this is ok behavior (and admire him?!?!?!) then feel the need to lash out at those of us stating our opinion.

    I have a high horse too Dianne, but don’t even think of telling me to stop putting the man down or stop reading his blog. This site doesn’t belong to you, yet you seem to know just a bit too much about this site, the hits, and the webmaster, so I’m totally believing you’re his sister. Takes a liar to know a liar; takes a cheat to know a cheat, and so on.

    @maxi, perfectly said, he’s full of himself and sh!t.

  13. @canes1969, do you really think we give a crap about how we’re sending a few pennies Steve’s way by posting here? That little story is getting old – we hear it every week. So what???

  14. Steve, to the extent that this announcement was made voluntarily and not as part of your settlement, hats off to you for coming clean and admitting your mistake.

    However, had I donated, I would be feeling slighted now as I do think the information you’ve presented about the case before today was skewed. You’ve told your readers over and over that you’ve never paid for any information (true), but if you tried and failed, that’s just as bad in my eyes and hence misleading to any donors.

    It’s like if my husband [truthfully] said to me “I’ve never cheated on you!”… but he’s tried, failed, and then got caught trying… It’s just as bad… and arguably even worse that he had the nerve to boast to me that he’s never cheated!

  15. @lucky, he’s got you fooled. Honest and hard working you say? He flat out lied to every single person that reads his blog. Whatever you lovers feel you wanna post, have at it. It’s pretty clear those of us that can see the truth are a bit more educated than the clinging vines…

  16. the verdict is in: steve is a slimeball for attempting to lure people into violating contracts with cash compensation. super selfish & shady for attempting to place people at that kind of risk, & trying to manipulate them with b.s, unsubstantiated reassurances that they would be safe in doing so. i still think his column is fairly entertaining but if he ever had any respect from me (questionable. the guy is somewhat douchey / somewhat funny & that’s basically his value) as a human being he certainly lost it. i feel badly for anyone who donated hard earned $ to his “cause,” and bought in to his “free speech” b.s.

    still think you r.s. obsessed stalkers (esp. the haters who seem to live for his columns, obsessing over his every word & deed, & constantly pouring over his comment board, bullying & even critiquing the writing styles of anyone who scrawls out a comment you disagree with – haha. so pathetic – & yeah, the lovers as well, as the dude you so passionately defend is a pretty sleazy douche, – though i’ll admit, i haven’t seen much defense going on lately), are pathetic & out of your minds, though!

    steve’s stupid defense – “I NEVER PAID ANYONE! (even though i attempted to.” – quite pathetic as well. steve still claims that he did nothing wrong! (huh? trying to pay people to violate contracts, not wrong?) i would say that the lawsuit against steve was not frivolous. – & whether you agree that corporations should have the right to draw up contracts limiting people’s freedom of speech in the first place is another matter. i think there should be limits to that. – the dude is self centered & delusional. honestly, i’m disgusted.

    oh well, what can you expect from anything or anyone so closely associated with or preoccupied with such a slimy & asinine tv show?

    still, it’s all good for a few laughs!

    ciao, all.

  17. This is not a first amendment issue. I agree with Cammie. Steve was not forthcoming with what really happened. He did not have to; however, he did not have to say it was a first amendment issue and then people donated.

  18. @rollingeyes and @Dianne, why attack cammie like that? I sort of feel the same way she does. I’ll still come to the site to read spoilers but really, I don’t see Steve in the same way anymore. I actually thought he WAS totally innocent when in fact he DID offer money to past contestants for info.

    Even if he didn’t receive the info and never actually paid them, I still think it’s shady. I kind of laugh at the way he constantly denied ever paying anyone for info but not revealing that he had tried. If I would have donated I’d be a little ticked off.

    I do realize that he has come forward and let us know what happened. So I commend him for that. I takes guts to actually admit that he did offer the money to them. Atleast he’s being honest now.

  19. Let the name-calling begin (but why?). Personally, I don’t like it, but then again, as others point out, I don’t have to read it. As “lucky on” reminds us, the site is free. And, Steve has chosen not to ban anyone, or at least to have a very liberal policy as to what he’ll tolerate. I wonder what would happen to the “criticizers” (not “haters” but certainly not “glass half full” types either) if Steve were to charge for his site? Would they/you join simply to continue to have a forum to criticize him?

  20. Disclaimer: I’m neither a lover or a hater. Don’t know him personally so could care less. However, he did say on blog after blog that he never offered money for his information. That was a lie. If I would have given any money I’d be a little upset. Also, there have been NO spoilers, AT ALL, this entire season. Everything that has been spoiled, ie the 3 remaining men, was posted on other sites before being posted on this one. I come to this site becuase I do like reading his blogs, his sarcasm cracks me up. I also come here hoping to read spoilers. As of now, he has had zero this season, that other sites don’t have. Kinda disappointing.

  21. I agree w/Cece 100% – “I’ll still come to the site to read spoilers but really, I don’t see Steve in the same way anymore. I actually thought he WAS totally innocent when in fact he DID offer money to past contestants for info.”

  22. And, perhaps I’m missing something here, but it was the Contestants who signed a non-disclosure agreement with ABC, not Steve. So what if he were to try to pay for information? It’s on THEM (Contestants) whether they chose to comply. To me it’s like a single person who has an affair with a married person. Sure, it’s not the coolest thing for the single person to do, but THEY aren’t the one who took vows. It’s really on the married person to decide whether to violate their commitment.

  23. Steve, thanks for clearing up what exactly the lawsuit was about! I am glad I donated and will say that it’s time the big wigs stop using money as intimidation. I read your website for spoilers and humor (even though you can come across harsh at times). If I didn’t want to know the ending of the show I would not come to your site. I enjoy the other blogs (Big Brother) as well! This is a free country for Steve to write what he wants and for people to choose to read it…if you don’t like what he writes don’t come to his site.

  24. And…just read Roberto is next Bachelor. Wonder if there’s any truth to that? Steve?

  25. breaking update in the R.S. Stalker Crazy Race:

    having just reviewed some of this column’s comments i can report that the love stalkers have once again broken ahead of the haters in the R.S. Stalkers’ Race for Crazy!!!

    this week’s lead was achieved by the lovers for passionately & mindlessly defending a slimeball – who attempted to financially lure people into violating contracts, thus placing them at considerable financial & legal risk, & then asking readers for financial support for his “free speech” legal case – as though he were some kind of honorable, hard working individual!

    yikes! brilliant move, love stalkers! you lovers have absolutely nailed this week’s race for crazy!

    congrats lovers! and the prize you fought to hard to attain – counseling for you, lovers! with a course in logic on the side.

    & congrats to you as well, haters! don’t despair, haters. there are times in life when losing is indeed winning…

  26. Love this from Dreamchi – “who attempted to financially lure people into violating contracts, thus placing them at considerable financial & legal risk, & then asking readers for financial support for his “free speech” legal case – as though he were some kind of honorable, hard working individual!”

  27. *Gasp* @ aatxcutie..you caught me! Yes, yes, I am the sister..good observation on your part..NOT!!

  28. @aatxcutie and @Cami
    I completely recognize your right to free speech in the same manner that Steve has his rights. But I think what others are trying to say is that you two (in addition to a couple of others) have taken over the comment section of his blog. Every post is negative, and it comes across as just dreck. If it was one comment here and there that was negative, that makes sense. But every comment? Does it ruin my day? No. But I find it irritating. I would rather hear both of your thoughts on the season and anything else interesting you have to say about the contestants, etc., as it’s clear you enjoy the show to some extent. That makes for an interesting read with the comments.

    It’s just that nowadays, the comments are so hate filled and I don’t quite understand it. I think when people say “why do you keep coming back to the site then,” it’s not because we don’t like people with differing opinions. But you make it seem as if you are so miserable reading what he has to write, it makes me wonder why you WANT to keep coming back. I’m not attacking either of you, so I’m asking for this not to turn into a silly comment board war. I’m just honestly looking for answers: do you really hate this site that much? If so, why do you keep coming back to it?

    And can we please get back to having great insight and discussions about the show/contestants/steve’s info? I would really value your opinions on those things!

  29. The reason comments r negative on this particular blog is because it is about the lawsuit. This was not about 1st amendment rights. Steve did something that tho not illegal was not totally legit either. He should not have made it about something it was not.

  30. Hi 3471l,
    I understand this blog in particular. But what made me comment is that I consistently see Cammie and aatxcutie (and a few others) making negative remarks on just about every single post he does. Recaps, info posts, quick updates…it’s just tiring, that’s all. I would understand if it was about a few things- as I said, one or 2 negative comments here and there? Understandable! Being upset about this lawsuit? Totally your opinion. But when it’s every single post Reality Steve does, it just gets really old from the same people over and over.

  31. By the way, Haters –
    Steve had Emily’s Final Four before ANY OTHER site did and was the FIRST to spoil that Chris went home as F4.
    The lemmings on bachandbachettefans are blindly believing someone named loveme who won’t even post with her real name. Reality Steve continues to be the only and true spoiler site for the Bachelor and Bachlorette. And, the man puts his name and email address out there for all to see.
    Try posting some “hater” comments on some of the other fan sites and ‘poof’ watch them disappear. Talk about free speech . . .

  32. I understand now. I have never commented before but to me this was too egregious not to comment. Steve got ppl to donate because we thought his first amendment rights were being squashed. They were not. I wonder how Matthew Chan feels now.

  33. I’ve been a reader for the last 4 seasons – I can understand people’s frustration with the fact that RS was misleading in his comments. If he had come out to state that he did offer money but did not pay, and then put up the donate button, people would have no reason to be upset. I don’t get the sense, however, that he schemed to hold back that piece of information to spur donations. When this first started, people asked how they could help, and so the site was set up to accept donations. RS stated in this post that he will be making all payments going forward not covered by donations. If you did donate and are that upset, perhaps try contacting RS for a refund. Otherwise, it would be nice to move on …

  34. Some people will just never be happy, they will always have a negative view on everything. If Steve came back and said “you know what? I can’t get my spoilers the way I used to, so I am going to quit spoiling and just go back to writing re-caps” all you whiny witches would complain and criticize him because you can’t get your spoilers anymore. Or if he chose to charge for access, same thing. You people are ridiculous. And no, I don’t consider myself a Steve-lover….I don’t KNOW him personally, so I can’t like/love someone I don’t know. But I enjoy what he does, and I will take the bad with the good. But some of you will NEVER be happy, and that is just a reflect on your live and general happiness over-all. Sure come back and tell me you are a happy person, but I guarantee there are people around you who consider you just a “negative Nelly” since that is all you portray yourselves to be on here.

  35. Why didn’t he write to Matthew Chan (not for the public to see) and explain this is not a first admendment right — I tried something, was turned down and they r still suing me and thank you for offering to help but no thanks?

  36. dreamchi, AMEN…I couldn’t have said it better myself.

    I am so glad I never drank the RS kool-aid!

    These comments are just too funny. They’re about the only reason I come on to the site these days. It sure isn’t for the eloquent, unbiased, intelligent writing (sarcasm)!

    And if anyone thinks this dude is honorable in any way, please stay on whatever planet you come from. Oh, and stop drinking the kook-aid!!!!

  37. I have mixed feeling on this. I commend Steve for opening up about the lawsuit today and being honest and admitting it was a foolish mistake to offer money to those 3 women in exchange for info. BUT, I do feel misled about the original situation. I don’t have time to go back and read every post, but if I recall correctly, Steve sure as heck made it sound like he was completely innocent. True, he never actually paid them, but he could’ve admitted to us that he did indeed offer it up. Very shady.

    I’ll continue to come to this site as long as Steve continues to prove me with info and entertainment about the show. I just hope this whole thing has given him a piece of humble pie.

    I also agree with others that it’s more fun on here when we talk about the show itself and not constant hate on Steve. I know I’ve posted some negative comments about Steve but moving forward I hope that won’t be the focus.

    Also for what it’s worth, I read somewhere this morning (forget which site, sorry) that Roberto has no interest in being the Bachelor. I’m sure Steve will be able to tell us more tomorrow. Sorry if this was a ridiculously long comment- am commenting from my iPhone for the first time ever and it looks weird on here and difficult to tell the length.

  38. @Athena, I agree with you 100%. I actually sent Steve an email with the same sentiments. Regardless of who he emailed, who he offered money to, or whatever, it’s up to the person with the contract to decide whether or not he/she will provide information. He has the right to ask questions and the people who are being asked have the right to provide information or not. Steve does not have a contract with NZK Productions, the contestants do. Sure, you can think of what Steve did as “shady” or whatever else, but I do not, under any circumstances, think it was illegal. You cannot sue somebody based on their character or their motivations, only whether what they did was legal or illegal. I mean, what if I ran into Emily or Jaclyn at a bar and said “hey, what happened when you were on the Bachelor”. They tell me that they do not wish to share information, so I say “how about I buy you a drink, will you tell me then?” and they continue to decline. This may be a simplified version of what Steve did, but it’s essentially the same idea. Would it be illegal for me to do that? Absolutely not! I do not think what Steve did was illegal either and I’m glad that the case was dropped. A lot of the attacks on here just seem to be personal.

    And to clear it up…I have never met any Bachelor/ette contestants and/or offered them alcohol in exchange for spoilers…Don’t sue me! :)

  39. I’m not saying I think it was shady for him to offer $ to them. The shady part, in my eyes, was leaving that part out to all of us readers when asking for donations.

  40. @D-Runner – Loved your comparison regarding Steve insisting that he never paid for information………you were right on the money. If my husband adamantly insisted that he never cheated, then I found out that he TRIED, but failed, well, he’d be out the door!

  41. @Dreamchi
    You cannot sue somebody of the basis of being shady, a slimeball, delusional, a douche, sleazy, or whatever other adjectives people are using. This is a case of morality vs legality. Many people think that Steve offering to pay people for information as wrong. So maybe it is, but is it illegal?

  42. @Caligirl, if there’s any issue I see with this whole case, it’s your point. I think before asking people for money, he should’ve admitted that he did offer money but did not actually compensate anyone. I don’t have time to look back at all the old posts, but I don’t know if Steve just said that he never compensated anyone (which would be true) or that he never offered to compensate anyone (which would be untrue and misleading to anyone who sent donations to support him). I’m going to stop writing comments on this post though, I’m sure people are tired of reading what I have to say by this point :)

  43. actually I think people are calling him shady (me included) because he conveniently left out the entire reason this law suit came to fruition and asked for money to help pay for his legal woes. Lies of omission are still lies.

  44. First off I love Steve’s columns and his site and will continue to come here to laugh, get spoilers, and other info about the shows.
    That said I don’t have to agree with everything that Steve does to enjoy his site. I think what he did was wrong (as he said himself) That’s fine we all make mistakes but a little humility would go along way. I think the reason why people are mad is he played it off like he did nothing wrong (yes, in the legal sense I agree with him) however, he played it off like there was no truth to what ABC was accusing him off, when it actually was 100% true regardless if it would have held up in court that doesn’t matter. Look he is free to ask for help for legal fees and nobody was holding a gun to the head of those that did donate, I do think it’s kind of crappy but also think that he has learned his lesson just like he did when he was wrong about the F2 a few years back and up until that point seemed to brag and throw it in people’s faces that he was always right. As I said before a little humility would go along way. Again, it won’t stop me from coming to his site (not that he would care if I didn’t) but do see why some are reacting the way they are about the situation.

  45. Have been a long time reader of Steve’s blog and totally enjoy it! Steve, you were your usual snarky, funny as heck self after Monday;’s show so glad the law suit is off your mind and you can continue to entertain me.

    Will continue to read Steve as long as he is around just because I can.

    As for Roberto…now that would be a season I would watch. Really liked him a lot as a person and would love to see Ali squirm when 25 ladies drool all over him! Sorry Ali, I know you want to remain in the spotlight, but giving up Roberto to achieve…well…nothing bothers me.

    Roberto would be a huge leap upward from dorky, dull, unattractive Ben!! Didn’t see all of his season, just read Steve and that was enough for me.

  46. Hi Steve. Thanks for your statement. I am a little disappointed to find that you did attempt to solicit contestants for money. I thought you had said that you didn’t, but maybe I am not remembering correctly. Either way, it takes a big person to admit it even after the fact. In the end, it’s good that they didn’t take you up on your offer and I suppose I even understand why you couldn’t tell us up front, even when asking for donations for your legal fund. I’m just surprised, that’s all….

  47. Wow Steve is taking a lot of heat for his statement. I can’t chime in because I’m new to the site and as such my opinion wouldn’t be fair or welcomed however I wanted to say that we should agree to disagree. If you feel you were duped by Steve ask for a refund of your donation and/or stop visiting the site. If you remain a fan respect that others may no longer be fans – it’s a matter of respecting each other even when there is a disagreement!

    Now on to Emily….sorry but the girl has a personality of a mole, who’s with me on this? :)

  48. I have the same issue a lot of the readers here are pinpointing. Steve may not have technically lied, but it was pretty damn close. He kept saying he didn’t pay anyone for information. But he offered–that’s a pretty big thing to leave out. And was this really an isolated incident? I hope tomorrow he’ll address why he left out the important info that he offered to pay off contestants/have them break their contracts, that is, if he bothered emphatically stating that he paid no one. Comes across as deceitful now that he’s disclosed what happened. And just as a side note, not for the most important info either–just to fill in some of the blanks of the season. I’m glad I was hesitant to donate and didn’t because I would feel especially misled if I had.

  49. I do not think that Steve requesting info from contestants in exchange for money is shady. The website is his business and if he can turn a profit by offering money in exchange for information, great! Like many have mentioned, he is not under any type of contract so he shouldn’t be punished for attempting to get information.

    I do however, think it is shady that he has repeatedly posted that he hasn’t offered to pay anyone for spoilers. He may not be guilty of what they are accusing him of because the girls declined his offer, but I do agree with the cheating analogy that was posted earlier. It’s would be like if my husband tried to cheat on me and was rejected by the other woman. He can say, “baby I never cheated on you,” but in my mind my husband would still be as guilty as if he had cheated since the desire and attempt was there.
    I do have to commend Steve for posting the statement below, as I have never heard anything like this out of his mouth.

    Steve – “It was a stupid, dumb, idiotic move on my part that ended up backfiring. I’d never done it before, and I’ll never do it again.”

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