Nickelodeon Alum Breaks Silence Over Network Exit, Misconduct Allegations

Dan Schneider, who has produced shows such as Drake & Josh and iCarly for Nickelodeon, addressed allegations of misconduct during an interview with the New York Times. Schneider split from the company abruptly in 2018, which prompted many to question what the reason was behind his departure. Now, Schneider not only opened up about splitting from Nickelodeon, but he also addressed allegations of misconduct against him.

The NYT reported that shortly before Schneider left Nickelodeon in 2018, he was being investigated by ViacomCBS for his alleged misconduct at the workplace. The producer did not comment on the investigation, which found that some people thought that he was verbally abusive. Instead, he defended himself by speaking about his leadership style and denying that he left the network on bad terms. He also said about the period since his exit from Nickelodeon, "I took a break to take care of a lot of stuff that I'd let go by the wayside for decades. Whatever I do next, I want it to outdo what I've done in the past."

Amid this investigation about his workplace behavior, there were many online who raised concerns about the appropriateness of the content in some of Schneider's shows. Some individuals put compilations together from these Nickelodeon shows in which shots of bare feet were presented as evidence of a fetish. Additionally, other scenes appeared to feature the casts acting out scripted moments that included sexual innuendos. As a result, there were also questions raised about Schneider's relationships with some of the young stars of these shows. In response to these allegations, and this online chatter specifically, Schneider called it "ridiculous." The producer also said that it was sad to see that those on social media can push forward "any lie." He added, "The comedy was totally innocent."

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While ViacomCBS's investigation found that some individuals believed Schneider to be verbally abusive, they did not find any evidence that he engaged in sexual misconduct. Schneider also denied that he was ever inappropriate with the people whom he worked with, saying, "I couldn't, and I wouldn't have the long-term friendships and continued loyalty from so many reputable people if I'd mistreated my actors of any age, especially minors." He also said later on in the interview that he only interacted with fans online "in very public ways" and that when it came to the actors on his shows, "I never interacted with actors in any way, texting or otherwise, that should make anyone uncomfortable." Disclosure: PopCulture is owned by ViacomCBS Streaming, a division of ViacomCBS.