UPDATED 5/18, 12:25 p.m. ET: Joe Budden has released a statement in response, apologizing “sincerely to Olivia, her former co-hosts, our staff, and the public” and noting the podcast episode in question will be pulled.
The Joe Budden Podcast leader’s full statement about Olivia Dope’s sexual harassment accusations is as follows:
“As a podcaster, it is my job to address topics and create dialogue around them. During the conversation on the See, The Thing Is podcast I didn’t handle the topics with the sensitivity they deserved. I recognize my words and power in that situation created an upsetting environment for Olivia. Upon reflection, both the network and I take accountability for this. I apologize sincerely to Olivia, her former co-hosts, our staff, and the public. In an effort to not further any trauma, the episode will be removed from all platforms. We support all women’s rights to feel comfortable and protected in the workplace. We fell short of that in this instance. We support Olivia in her quest to heal, applaud her for finding the strength to share her experience, and wish her the best in all her future endeavors. I am taking the time to listen and learn; we have already begun to make the necessary changes to ensure this is a safe environment for all moving forward. We at the network endeavor to continue to elevate Black women’s voices and create opportunities to have constructive conversations to impact change.”
See original story below.
DJ Olivia Dope, a former host of the See, The Thing Is podcast from the Joe Budden Network, has accused Joe Budden of sexually harassing her.
In a video she shared on Instagram, Dope explained that Budden’s behavior towards her was the reason she left the podcast. “I am doing this video today to finally explain my departure from the See ,The Thing Is podcast as well as the Joe Budden Network. I sat with this for three months, anxiously debating with myself if I feel comfortable enough to express my reasoning for my departure.”
“I am here today, still uncomfortable, but I find the bravery to speak out on a very embarrassing situation,” she continued. “On Jan. 18, 2021, Joe Budden sat in on a recording of the female-led podcast I was a part of and continuously made sexual, suggestive remarks to me that made me extremely uncomfortable as well as fearful of dampening the mood if I didn’t laugh along while he made those sexual remarks to me. Those moments not only live on the internet forever, it also forced me into the decision of quitting the podcast.”
She called the experience “traumatizing” and “embarassing,” but she chose to speak up so that people can be made aware of Budden’s behavior. She proceeded to offer timestamps of the episode, and instances in which Budden had made inappropriate comments or actions towards her. She highlighted that prior to sexually harassing her in the episode, Budden even said the two had not spoken privately or personally.
“There’s an editing in the recording because Joe says him and I should speak more because he ‘been wanted to fuck me since we’ve met,’” she said of one moment. “Everyone in the studio laugh uncomfortably while one of my co-hosts confirmed that to be true. I am mortified by this revelation not only because it was done in front of the entire production staff but it was done while we were recording audio as well as visual.”
Less than five minutes later, a similiar edit was made to the podcast, she says. “Another edit happens because Joe makes another suggestion to having sex with me,” Dope added. “Joe makes a comment that I am throwing my singleness in his face. And he thought we were going to be a network power couple. Once again, I’m trying to laugh all of this off.” Later in the episode, Budden made further inappropriate comments, and then asks for an on-air hug.
“It’s unbeknownst to me until I actually watch back the episode that he was moving his hips while he was hugging me,” she said. The same moment has started circulating on Twitter in light of Dope’s statement on the matter.
“Once I decided to quit, I informed my lawyer,” she concluded. “My lawyer got on the phone with his lawyer and informed that these are the reasons my client is leaving this network. I then informed my cast mates via text that I am not built for the Joe Budden network. No one responded in that moment and I was removed from the group chat. But I did speak to both of them a week after. Also, after my departure, Joe then went on his podcast and made this statement: ‘If I hire any women, I’m going to want to fuck them bitches.’”
Earlier this month, Joe Budden was criticized after he fired his co-hosts Rory and Mal. He later apologized to the duo, and asked for the dramatic moment to be edited out of the episode. He has yet to address Olivia Dope’s accusations.