Sun Valley: Barry Diller Defends Tinder CEO, Talks Aereo’s Future

IAC/InterActiveCorp chairman Barry Diller expressed support for embattled Tinder chief executive officer Sean Rad at the annual Allen & Co. media and technology conference on Thursday.

Rad’s leadership of the dating app is being scrutinized following a sexual harassment lawsuit filed last month by Whitney Wolfe, a former vice president for marketing. Diller told media that he saw no reason to dismiss the company’s CEO.

“We’ve been doing an internal investigation that is not yet complete, but so far has not given us any reason to believe that the CEO was engaged in any negative practices,” said Diller.

In the suit, Wolfe alleges that Rad ignored her complaints about mistreatment at the hands of chief marketing officer Justin Mateen, who she claims insulted her publicly and called her a “whore” at a company function after they ended a relationship. Wolfe also alleges that she was unfairly stripped of her co-founder status. Mateen has been suspended pending the investigation.

Diller said the suit has not changed his confidence in the company.

The media mogul was also in the news this week after Aereo filed with the U.S. district court to obtain the type of statutory license that allows cable companies to operate. The streaming service sustained a defeat at the Supreme Court last month when a majority of justices ruled that the company violated copyright laws by refusing to pay retransmission fees for broadcast television. The court ruled that Aereo, which charges a subscription fee, was ostensibly a cable service.

“I really actually haven’t read the filing,” said Diller, when asked if Aereo has a future as a cable company. “This is a decision that the Supreme Court rendered which said that Aereo was like a cable company beyond that.”

Diller will participate in a panel on the communications industry Thursday along with Comcast chairman Brian Roberts and 21st Century Fox co-chief operating officer James Murdoch.

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