It may be the end of an era for Gawker, after an enormous settlement in Hulk Hoagn’s favor takes a chunk out of their company.
On Friday a jury of six people took less than six hours to find the privately-held online media company liable for leaking a 2007 sex tape of Hogan with Heather Clem, his former best friend’s wife. Gawker Media contended that the video, which they published in 2012 and shows nine seconds of actual sex, was newsworthy commentary on the “ordinariness of celebrity sex videos”.
The breakdown of the judgement gives $55 million for economic injuries and $60 million for emotional distress for invasion of privacy to the former wrestling champion. For Gawker this is a nightmare as the company is said to only be worth $250 million. Nick Denton the founder of Gawker Media, said at one point that this case could put him out of business.
But the real tragedy to the trial that went on for two weeks, is the effect it had on Hogan’s —whose real name is Terry Bollea— ex-wife and kids.
“I don’t know how he can do this to his family, to his peers, to the world,” Linda Hogan told Inside Edition in an exclusive interview. Sobbing as she talks about what his infidelity and disrespect did to the family, she continues, “[And] still keep his chin up and act like he’s done no wrong.”
In a letter written to her ex-husband, Linda says: Terry, YOU have single handedly ruined our 25-year marriage and our family … my trust, my love, my future, our future family with grandchildren, holidays, weddings, our kids’ lives, homes, their ability to trust, our poor animals, friends, neighbors, your career, finances, trademarks, retirement, your legacy, your reputation, your health … even your soul … You lost it ALL. You took me for granted and never appreciated me or our beautiful family … blaming me for your horrendous mistakes. And yet you continue in life this very way, still .. Hiding behind those sunglasses, false smile , oh … and the bandana! Until you can really apologize, to me … And to our children … I will never ever forgive you. —Linda
While this is not the first hurdle that Gawker has faced, there’s no telling what the future of the company will be.
But we do know Hogan owes an enormous apology to his wife and children for putting them through this hell and getting millions as a result of it.