The “bust” of Playgirl magazine has finally come to light.
It’s not that the magazine was never around; it’s just that it never quite got the attention it deserved.
In April, a new Playgirl issue was launched.
At the time, Knight had been editor in chief of the mag since 2012.
She had also previously worked at Vanity Fair, which is why the new issue was titled “The Truth about Being Busted.”
Knight explained in a statement that she’d been “haunted by the story” of how she was “busted” and “the repercussions it had on my life.”
She added that the story “revealed a darker side of the magazine and its readers,” and that the publisher “took steps to correct that.”
But that was before she was accused of lying about her employment.
In July, Knight and her former boss, former Playgirl editor in charge Stephanie Beatriz, filed a defamation lawsuit against the magazine’s parent company, New York magazine, alleging defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
It was filed on behalf of three former employees, one of whom is now a former Playmate herself.
The suit alleges that New York Magazine “engaged in a pattern of malicious conduct” against the former editors, which included, among other things, “sensationalizing, sensationalizing, and fabricating information about Ms. Knight, including that she is a sex worker,” and “trying to ruin her career” by publishing articles about her “false allegations of sexual assault.”
In the lawsuit, the former Playgirls said that the articles “ignored the truth of Ms. [Knight’s] claims and made unsubstantiated claims about her personal life and personal life history.”
The lawsuit also accused New York of publishing “false and defamatory statements about Ms, Knight, which have harmed her reputation and professionally damaged her professionally and professionally, including in her former employment.”
The suit, filed in New York state Supreme Court, names the Playgirl publisher, New Yorker editor and former editor-in-chief Stephanie Beatriss, New Republic magazine, and former PlayGirl editor and managing editor Sara E. Schmitt as defendants.
The suit alleges defamation, intentional inflicment of emotional pain and infliction and inflictions of emotional suffering.
The plaintiffs are represented by Gloria Allred and the law firm of the New York attorney general’s office.
The lawyers for the former employees said in a press release that the claims “cannot be adequately supported by any facts or evidence,” and they would seek “all appropriate relief” if the lawsuit goes to trial.
Playgirl was launched in the mid-2000s, and was owned by the then-fledgling Vogue.
After being bought by HarperCollins, the magazine went through a number of changes, including the firing of its longtime editor, Kate Beckinsale, in March 2017.
Beckinsales departure was seen as a blow to the magazine, which was widely seen as being in the hands of a younger, more influential editor.
Beckinsales left the magazine in May, and her successor, Victoria W. Bailey, became the new editor in June.
The lawsuit filed against New York on behalf, among others, Schmitt, was filed in June 2017.
In June 2017, Playgirl was sued by another former editor, Rachel Weisz, who alleged in a lawsuit that she had been fired for reporting that a former Vogue editor was “an escort.”
That lawsuit was also filed on her behalf.
The lawsuit alleged that Weiss was fired “in retaliation for reporting false information about a former magazine employee” and that “the defamations and defamed Ms. Weis-Becks were used to advance a false narrative about Ms., Beckinsalez’s character.”
In a statement to The Huffington Post, a spokesperson for HarperCollins told the magazine that “New York Magazine has long since ceased publication of Playgirls.”
The spokesperson added that HarperCollins “is cooperating fully with the lawsuit.”
The lawsuit also names Playgirl and the Playgirls of America, a group of former Playmates that was formed in January 2018.
In a statement, the group said, “Playgirls has been a vital resource for Playgirl editors, editors-in’s-chief and other staff.
The actions of New York’s attorney general are outrageous and deeply disappointing.”
The Playgirls have said they are disappointed in the lawsuit and that they have filed a complaint with the New Jersey attorney general.