Mortgage

Did Quicken Loans CEO force Yahoo to delete content?

Deadspin accuses Dan Gilbert of exerting influence to have blog post deleted

The coverage areas of HousingWire and Deadspin don’t often overlap. The occasionally antagonistic site covers all things sports, media and much of life in general, but housing finance usually isn’t in their purview.

But one area where HousingWire and Deadspin share a common interest is in Dan Gilbert, the founder and chairman of Quicken Loans and the owner of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers.

And over on Deadspin today, Gilbert is the big story. According to a Deadspin report, Gilbert allegedly used his influence as an advertiser and media partner to force Yahoo to remove a blog post, in which the author offhandedly accused Quicken Loans of predatory lending.

From the Deadspin article:

Quicken Loans is a predatory lender. It's impossible to read the numerous lawsuits against the mortgage company and conclude otherwise. So when Kelly Dwyer, the editor of Yahoo's popular NBA blog Ball Don't Lie, made an offhand joke about that fact in a post last year, he would have had no reason to think twice.

The owner of Quicken Loans, though, is Dan Gilbert, also owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers and a man whose vanity is exceeded only by his pettiness. According to multiple sources, after Gilbert read Dwyer's post, he and his chief legal counsel called Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer directly to complain about a snarky line that read something like "Predatory Lender Quicken Loans Arena." We're not sure precisely what it said, because barely any traces of it remain online. Mayer ordered the post, which had already been published, deleted immediately.

According to Deadspin, the day before Dwyer published the article in question, Quicken and Yahoo announced a partnership which begat the “Billion Dollar Bracket Challenge,” the contest on Yahoo that offered $1 billion to anyone who could must accurately predict the winners of all 63 games in the college men’s basketball tournament.

And Gilbert was reportedly so incensed by Dwyer’s post that he forced Yahoo to delete the post and nearly had Dwyer fired.

Again from Deadspin:

Multiple sources ventured that if Bob Condor, the executive editor of Yahoo Sports, had played any part in taking down the post, it would have happened over his strongest objections, and that he not only certainly argued against firing Dwyer, but won the argument, as Dwyer is still Ball Don't Lie's editor.

Dwyer is still at Yahoo, but the post in question is certainly not.

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