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Daily Wire CEO Jeremy Boreing published a video Thursday disclosing and discussing a non-binding term sheet the company offered to podcast host Steven Crowder.
The sheet reveals that Daily Wire offered Crowder $50 million over four years. The deal included a two-year company option that, if exercised, would continue to pay Crowder $12.5 million a year.
Boreing expressed this was DW’s opening bid. The company was likely to bid — much — higher during negotiations, he states.
Here’s a screenshot of the offer:
Boreing posted the video in response to comments Crowder made on Tuesday about an unnamed conservative media company offering him a contract that contained, what he described as, penalties if Big Tech were to demonetize his content.
Crowder accused the company of enabling censorship with the following terms:
“If any of the major platforms (e.g. YouTube, Facebook, Apple Podcasts, Spotify) issues a content strike (other than a “companywide” content strike) such that Crowder content cannot be monetized on such platform, and the company is not able to resolve the issue within 90 days, then the fee will be reduced by 25% from that point forward.”
Precisely, the terms would allow the company to reduce Crowder’s salary if a content strike were to decrease the revenues the brand could generate from his program.
For background, Crowder boasts nearly 6 million subscribers on YouTube. He has notoriously feuded with the video service over demonetization, censorship, and suspensions.
Crowder’s contract with The Blaze expired late last year, allowing him to negotiate with outside suitors. Fans on Twitter quickly speculated the ever-expanding Daily Wire was the unnamed company Crowder referenced in the video.
And it was, as Jeremy Boreing confirms.
Boreing says he confirmed speculation to be transparent with DW subscribers. He also says Crowder inaccurately portrayed the offer.
Boreing rejects the idea that the clause to reduce pay for demonetization is a “punishment.” He calls the language a means to protect the company from bearing the full burden of demonetization, which results in lesser than projected earnings.
“Steven’s philosophy appears to be: ‘I deserve to be paid millions and millions and millions of dollars whether my show drives the revenue or not.’ That’s not a business relationship. He’s looking for a benefactor.”
Simply, Boreing says the company could not afford to continue paying Crowder — at least — $50 million if his show could no longer earn as planned.
He adds the DW would actively “find new advertisers” to replace lost revenue amid monetization limitations, at which point Crowder would draw his full salary again.
The topic of YouTube appears to be the catalyst for the disparate interpretations of the deal. Boreing says Crowder argued to him that because YouTube already demonetized his show, penalizing him would be unfair. Yet Boreing suggests the final draft would mend or eliminate the YouTube reduction if aware the service would not contribute to revenue.
“That’s the kind of thing in negotiations you scratch through … and [rewrite] to anticipate [YouTube has already demonetized Steven]. And that would have been fine,” Boreing said of Crowder’s current status on YouTube.
Boreing admits a revenue share — where each side earns an agreed-up percentage of the show’s revenue — would ease such concerns but realizes signing a talent like Crowder requires “a big guarantee.”
Ultimately, Crowder is worth the at-the-first-glance-shocking $50 million. Consider that FanDuel pays Pat McAfee $30 million a year. Spotify pays Alex Cooper $20 million. Crowder’s show is equal to, if not more successful than, theirs.
That said, Daily Wire is hardly shilling for Big Tech by implementing clauses to split the burden of potentially lost revenues. Bad business it’d be to guarantee such money as threats of censorship loom.
What’s unfortunate is that Big Tech demonization has become a necessary impasse during negotiations. Platforms like YouTube continue to engage in politically-motivated censorship and limit the reach of creators who contest the prevailing narrative.
Crowder’s content runs afoul of the media consensus. With such a substantial audience, his mockery and questioning of those in power make him a leading inconvenience.
He’s a repeat offender of thought crimes. Thus, his demonetization on YouTube.
You can watch Boreing and Crowder discuss the negotiations below. And we encourage you to watch both clips: