Fox News told Tucker Carlson's lawyers that the man breached his contract by starting a show on Twitter, Axios reported, citing a copy of a letter that it obtained.
The outlet reported that a breach-of-contract claim positions Fox News to explore possible legal action.
"Fox defends its very existence on freedom of speech grounds. Now they want to take Tucker Carlson's right to speak freely away from him because he took to social media to share his thoughts on current events," Carlson's lawyer Bryan Freedman declared in a statement, according to Axios.
Carlson had been a primetime fixture on the Fox News Channel for years, and in April, on what turned out to be his final episode, he had even said, "We'll be back on Monday." But instead, on that Monday, Fox announced that Carlson would not be returning to the air. The press release claimed that Carlson and Fox News Media had "agreed to part ways."
Carlson, who announced in May that he planned to do a show on Twitter, posted the first episode on Tuesday of this week. The tweet containing Carlson's approximately ten-minute video has already amassed more than 94 million views.
After Carlson shared the video, Fox News general counsel Bernard Gugar sent a message to Carlson's lawyers claiming that Carlson "is in breach" of his contract agreement, Axios reported.
"In connection with such breach and pursuant to the Agreement, Fox expressly reserves all rights and remedies which are available to it at law or equity," the letter stated, according to the outlet.
"This evening we were made aware of Mr. Tucker Carlson's appearance on Twitter in a video that lasted over 10 minutes," the letter stated, according to Axios. "Pursuant to the terms of the Agreement, Mr. Carlson's 'services shall be completely exclusive to Fox,'" the letter declared, quoting from the media personality's contract, according to Axios. The contract further states Carlson is "prohibited from rendering services of any type whatsoever, whether 'over the internet via streaming or similar distribution, or other digital distribution whether now known or hereafter devised,'" the letter said.
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