HBO boss Casey Bloys apologises for using fake accounts to attack TV critics online

Casey Bloys was appointed HBO's CEO and chairman in October 2022. Credit: AP

HBO boss Casey Bloys has admitted to asking his employees to create fake social media accounts to target TV critics.

Rolling Stone had originally reported on Wednesday that in June 2020, Bloys, the then-president of original programming at the network giant, was "irked" by a post on X, formerly Twitter, from a Vulture TV critic who had voiced her thoughts on HBO series Perry Mason, starring Matthew Rhys.

Bloys reportedly said in a series of leaked texts to HBO's senior vice president of drama programming Kathleen McCaffrey that they needed someone to "go on a mission" and make a point to "make her feel bad".

Rolling Stone added that Bloys then discussed creating a "secret army" to fire back at the harsh critic takes on Twitter.

Bloys reportedly did not like a tweet made by a Vulture TV critic about HBO show Perry Mason, starring Matthew Rhys. Credit: Merrick Morton/HBO

He was appointed HBO's CEO and chairman in October 2022.

At an HBO event in New York on Thursday, Bloys apologised to the professionals targeted.

He said it was done at a time where he was "working from home and doing an unhealthy amount of scrolling through Twitter," calling it "a very, very dumb idea to vent my frustration."

Bloys said that six tweets over an 18-month period was "not very effective".

"I do apologise to the people who were mentioned in the leaked texts," he added.

The texts are reportedly part of a wider lawsuit being pulled together against Bloys, McCaffrey and others, as well as HBO, by an ex-employee who claims to have been wrongfully terminated from his job.

As well as harassment and discrimination, the former staff member alleges that he was asked to create fake accounts to counter the less-favourable takes of HBO show critics.

Want more entertainment news? Listen to our podcast, Unscripted...