June Xie, creator and host of Delish’s hit YouTube show “Budget Eats,” comes with receipts in a lengthy new interview dealing with her awkward layoff from the Hearst-owned food brand.
The 33-year-old, who was working on a recipe for a digital media company before moving on to the show, gave Insider an audio recording of her HR meeting, an internal email, and a Slack message, and made it all public on Thursday.
In short, Xie claims he was fired in retaliation for being too outspoken about Delish’s problems, including overworked employees and lack of communication from top managers. However, Hearst claims she was “her man” in her Slack messages and acted against company protocol.
She told Insider that she rejected a separation agreement offering a $9,676.07 severance payment and had to sign a non-disclosure agreement. I said I wanted “Budget Eats” fans to know.
Xie insisted on a pitch to create a YouTube series. The series sees her stretch her modest grocery budget significantly, which she finally made during the pandemic. She said other attempts had been previously rejected because Delish wanted to create high-end content from her own kitchen, but was canceled due to coronavirus.
Her first “Budget Eats” episode, “I was living in New York City on a budget of $5 a day for a week,” was posted on May 6, 2020, and quickly resonated with quarantined viewers. I called to Xie has also become something of an “office celebrity” among her Delish employees.
While at the company, Xie edited 48 pages of alleged run-ins in real time with manager Robert Seixas, which he also handed over to Insider. In one instance, they butted heads when Seixas demanded that their outlet copy use “sliced chives” instead of “chopped chives.”
In a Slack message, Xie claimed the change would cause inconsistencies in the site’s recipe library, but Seixas stood firm.
“It should only be called sliced,” he wrote. For example, if you’re looking for a thicker cut, you can say “slice 1/4 inch thick.” ”
Xie told Insider that his mission has a deeper meaning.
“For me, it was a pointless ego exercise,” she said.
In another example, Xie refuted another order from Delish’s top leader, editorial director Joanna Saltz, by posting a photo of her job description via Slack, stating that the request was not a role she would take on. reminded executives.
“I want to point out that even the smallest tasks added to my plate contribute to burnout over time,” Xie wrote.
Xie claimed Saltz later emailed her to thank her for her honesty.
In August, HR called Xie to ask about her company issues. But according to her union representative Zach Lennon-Simon, they turned the blame on her.
“The HR person repeatedly said, ‘Can you see that your tone is the real problem? As if he didn’t call 911 properly,” he said.
She accused Seixas of calling him an “s–t manager with a scab-like personality” and “racist comments and remarks unrelated to Slack” at a series of other meetings. was called to ”
Xie thinks he’s referring to the slides he shared with Seixas, who’s black, at a workshop about white supremacist culture.
“I’m not accusing anyone of being a white supremacist,” Xie told Insider.
However, HR claimed that these actions violated Heart’s bullying policy, for which Xie received a “final warning.”
The straw that supposedly broke the camel’s back came in the form of a TV show deal. Xie has been in talks with Hearst Communications co-owned She’s A&E Networks about making “Budget Eats” into a TV series, but fears doing so would “dilute the sincerity” of the show. I admit that.
Xie felt “precarious and unsafe” in his deal with Hearst, but after a phone call with Hearst’s head of development, Jude Harris, it was ultimately Xie’s decision whether or not to do the TV show. I was relieved when I told her that there was.
Xie decided against it and alerted A&E’s lawyers by email, a move that backfired.
According to records, a human resources representative told Xie, “I learned that you recently exited the project without consultation with the business or management. I should have talked to you,” he said. , at a meeting where she was fired.
Xie claimed to have followed Harris’ instructions, but the HR representative replied:
“Unfortunately, it was not communicated… There was a managerial decision made by the most senior leaders within Edit, which they regard as disobedience. As such, they do not feel it is beneficial to continue this working relationship.”
Now that everything is out in the open, Xie is looking forward to learning from the urban farming course she enrolled in and creating even more cooking content.
“I love food,” Xie told Insider. “My life revolves around making food. I also think there are some markets that may not be very lucrative, but make a little more sense than making recipe videos.”
A Hearst Magazines spokesperson told The Post:
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