Redstone Unfazed By Release Of "Bribery" Tape
Sumner Redstone, the chairman of Viacom and CBS, was reported to be delighted with the notoriety he achieved this week when a recording of a voicemail message to a celebrity website was broadcast on numerous news programs and uploaded online. In the recording, Redstone seemingly offered a bribe and protection to Peter Lauria of the Barry Diller-owned TheDailyBeast.com, who had written that Redstone had become "smitten" with an all-girl group, the Electric Barbarellas, and was attempting to force MTV -- a Viacom unit -- to air a reality series about them. Redstone wanted Lauria to provide the source of his article. "Sumner is really proud of what he did," a source close to Viacom told today's (Thursday) New York Post (Lauria's former employer). "This guy is loving it, loving the fact it's on the Today show." The Post further claims that Redstone showered Barbarella member Heather Naylor with insider stock options when she worked as an MTV assistant, something unheard of, according to the Post 's source. The newspaper said that Naylor sold 4,950 shares for $157,000 in March of this year.