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Finlay Resigns, Catazaro and Ramasar Suspended -- Update: Catazaro and Ramasar Fired


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3 hours ago, KayDenmark said:

My question still stands, though: did Finlay authorize Waterbury to do anything on his computer beyond check her own email?

If he didn't, is the information she was not authorized to collect admissible in civil or criminal court? 

 

1

Slow day at work, so I'm answering my own question.  

According to this article published on the website of the American Bar Association by a New York State-based lawyer, "Just because a lawful owner of a device consents to its examination does not necessarily mean every digital file stored on the device is fair game to inspect—i.e., falls within the scope of the owner’s consent.....Lawyers and investigators need to be sensitive to how a lawful authorization to search may subsequently implicate the rights of third parties, who may have a reasonable expectation of privacy that could be invaded."

It's a long article without a distinct conclusion, and as a layperson I certainly can't claim to understand all its nuances. 

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/professional_responsibility/publications/professional_lawyer/2016/volume-24-number-1/forensic_examination_digital_devices_civil_litigation_legal_ethical_and_technical_traps.html

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15 minutes ago, KayDenmark said:

According to this article published on the website of the American Bar Association by a New York State-based lawyer, "Just because a lawful owner of a device consents to its examination does not necessarily mean every digital file stored on the device is fair game to inspect—i.e., falls within the scope of the owner’s consent.....Lawyers and investigators need to be sensitive to how a lawful authorization to search may subsequently implicate the rights of third parties, who may have a reasonable expectation of privacy that could be invaded."

The last thing Chase Finlay can invoke is invasion of privacy

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56 minutes ago, Magda said:

The last thing Chase Finlay can invoke is invasion of privacy

Well, certainly many of us might agree with that as a notion, but the question of whether he would actually have grounds to successfully invoke it as a bar to the admissibility of evidence in a civil case is a rather different question. I have doubts that he would, though, and I still do after a quick skim of the article posted by @KayDenmark. (Thanks for finding that.)

I'd be interested to hear from any lawyers, or others more familiar with the law in this matter, who could provide further sources that might shed light on the issue.

Edited by nanushka
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5 hours ago, KayDenmark said:

Assuming you are signed in with your Apple ID, the most recent text sent by you or someone else pops up on a MacBook. If you have a text window open, you can also see other messages from that most recent conversation - right now on my laptop, for example, you can see about 10 lines of back-and-forth text between my teenage daughter and I. It's visible to anyone who opens my laptop.

What's not visible, however, is what happened before or after those 10 lines. My text messages with other friends and family are also not visible, except for their names and the first few words of the message in a column off to the side. ("Thanks! It was a pleasure to have you join us" is about the length we're looking at.)

So that if my Apple ID is on automatic sign-in, I could potentially see "Or like the sluts they are," or "god damn, I'm going to get a video of [person] cumming..." or "I want to jerk off to watching u and...", plus the names of the participants.

What is quite clear from the article is her lawyer's responsibility during discovery.

 

 

1 hour ago, aurora said:

It seems this is the time of year for clearing house of bad actors over at Lincoln Center:

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/16/arts/music/new-york-philharmonic-liang-wang-matthew-muckey.html

The article says it's after a five-month investigation, which means theirs started at least two-three months before Waterbury/her lawyer contacted NYCB.

19 minutes ago, Kathleen O'Connell said:

Having been through several similar incidents during my career, I can promise NYCB that one of the hardest things they'll have to grapple with as an organization is the fallout from the very human urge to take sides. 

On top of the sides that were drawn over Martins.

Now people have a much broader platform through which to make their sides known than before social media.  No one has to wait for the NYT or the Daily News to decide whether to publish their thoughts.

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Wall Street Journal - New York City Ballet Faces Fundraising Test as It Comes Under Scrutiny Over Treatment of Female Dancers

As it prepares to launch its season Tuesday night, New York City Ballet is faced with a singular financial challenge in light of a headline-grabbing lawsuit.

Namely, how to raise the millions of dollars the 70-year-old institution needs when its treatment of its female dancers has come under scrutiny.

***

The company said the move to ultimately terminate Messrs. Catazaro and Ramasar came “after further assessment of their conduct and the impact on the NYCB community.”

***

Fundraising consultants and dance professionals say the decision to fire Messrs. Catazaro and Ramasar sends the signal that the company is taking the allegations very seriously. But they also say the situation could stop some donors from contributing.

“It will definitely have an impact on fundraising,” said Juan José Escalante, executive director of the New York-based José Limón Dance Foundation and a former financial administrator at New York City Ballet. Mr. Escalante added that while it is difficult to put an estimate on the decline, he said, “I think it is reasonable to assume anywhere between a 5 to 10% hit.”

***

The company expressed confidence that it won’t be affected financially by the news of recent weeks. “We have been very grateful for the messages of support that the company has been receiving from members of the NYCB community including donors and ticket buyers,” said Mr. Daniels, the company spokesman.

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1 hour ago, Helene said:

The article says it's after a five-month investigation, which means theirs started at least two-three months before Waterbury/her lawyer contacted NYCB.

My apologies if it appeared I was saying there was a causal or direct relationship between the two events.

I just was calling attention to a seemingly similar situation (albeit with much less information available) going on concurrently across the plaza.

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Just now, aurora said:

My apologies if it appeared I was saying there was a causal or direct relationship between the two events.

I just was calling attention to a seemingly similar situation (albeit with much less information available) going on concurrently across the plaza.

I just meant to point out that a lot was a-cooking this winter and spring at Lincoln Center.

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1 hour ago, nanushka said:

Well, certainly many of us might agree with that as a notion, but the question of whether he would actually have grounds to successfully invoke it as a bar to the admissibility of evidence in a civil case is a rather different question. I have doubts that he would, though, and I still do after a quick skim of the article posted by @KayDenmark. (Thanks for finding that.)

I'd be interested to hear from any lawyers, or others more familiar with the law in this matter, who could provide further sources that might shed light on the issue.

Even in criminal cases, this would likely get admitted. Basically, what Waterbury saw would form the basis for probable cause, sufficient to get a search warrant for the police to search Finlay's hard drive . Since this is a civil case, none of that applies, but that would be the procedure in a criminal case.

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18 minutes ago, Emma said:

Even in criminal cases, this would likely get admitted. Basically, what Waterbury saw would form the basis for probable cause, sufficient to get a search warrant for the police to search Finlay's hard drive . Since this is a civil case, none of that applies, but that would be the procedure in a criminal case.

I'm not sure we know exactly what Waterbury saw before she took any action to search further, though — and does "probable cause" really exist as a concept relating to the collection of evidence by private individuals in a civil case? I don't remember encountering the phrase outside the context of evidence collection by legal/governmental authorities.

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4 minutes ago, Helene said:

Neither the complaint nor the newspaper articles attribute any of those quotes to Ramasar.

True, and (forgive me, I've had trouble at times keeping all the details straight) is there any specific action Ramasar himself has been directly accused of that he explicitly denies in that post?

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28 minutes ago, Rick said:

 

 There are racial aspects to this story that play into the worst instincts of the American psyche.   I've even seen articles where Ramasar's skin color is filtered to look darker than it actually is,  like a dupe of Idris Elba.  Chase Finlay,  the protagonist in this tragedy,  barely gets a mention in most stories.

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We may read different media. I actually have seen very strongly worded public facing social media statements exclusively  focused on Finlay —none focused entirely on Ramasar except on his Instagram page. And I saw early press that was circulated all over the place primarily accompanied with pictures of Finlay or Finlay and Waterbury. But as the story has grown and Ramasar has begun issuing statements, it is certainly well to be sensitive about how Ramasar gets depicted for the reasons On Pointe alludes to.

For ballet watchers and Broadway goers Ramasar is also the best known and most admired of the dancers involved as well...so that adds another layer to responses. Even in the Times's first article about this suit, quotes from the paper's dance critic made it clear he had critical reservations about the recent dancing of Finlay and Catazaro but not Ramasar. 

Ramasar's second statement is considerably better than his first. One wishes it had not taken him two tries to express sympathy for Waterbury and regret for some of his actions. But likely this helps him if not with NYCB than in other career avenues he may have.

 

Edited by Drew
punctuation/grammar
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37 minutes ago, On Pointe said:

 There are racial aspects to this story that play into the worst instincts of the American psyche.   I've even seen articles where Ramasar's skin color is filtered to look darker than it actually is,  like a dupe of Idris Elba.  Chase Finlay,  the protagonist in this tragedy,  barely gets a mention in most stories.

I agree with you about many things, On Pointe, but not this. Most of the initial stories were about Finlay; the reason Ramasar gets more prominence in recent stories is that Finlay's resignation is now old news. In addition, Ramasar is simply better known - he's on Broadway! - and more popular, even among his colleagues. He will be missed. No one seems to be missing Chase Finlay, or Catazaro for that matter.

Edit: I did not see Drew's post before I posted - apparently great minds think alike. :9

Edited by KayDenmark
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Discussing comments by non-ballet professionals on social media or mainstream media articles is not permitted on BA!, and those references have been removed. 

Discussing public-facing posts, including comments, by ballet professionals on social media or mainstream media articles is.

 

25 minutes ago, nanushka said:

True, and (forgive me, I've had trouble at times keeping all the details straight) is there any specific action Ramasar himself has been directly accused of that he explicitly denies in that post?

None that I can see, unless I've missed something in the complaint that ties him to group chat, or at least attributes the quoted conversation(s) and descriptions to a specific group chat and connects him to it.

What he was accused of in the complaint was soliciting photos from and trading them with Finlay.  He admits to communications between him and Finlay done on private time and having received photos, but he no longer "possesses" them -- he claims he currently "possesses" photos of one consenting adult -- which he didn't further circulate.

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22 minutes ago, On Pointe said:

 There are racial aspects to this story that play into the worst instincts of the American psyche.   I've even seen articles where Ramasar's skin color is filtered to look darker than it actually is,  like a dupe of Idris Elba.  Chase Finlay,  the protagonist in this tragedy,  barely gets a mention in most stories.

I don't feel this situation has been racialized, but I wouldn't deny those feelings in anyone else, if that's their take. From my perspective, there hasn't been a lot of talk of Finlay recently because there have been no new developments in his case. He resigned immediately, has made no statements and deleted his profile from Instagram. 

The only one who, in the realm of social media or traditional media, who has highlighted Ramasar's race -- as far as I'm aware -- is Ramasar himself, in the Instagram post that preceded the one above.

32 minutes ago, Helene said:

Neither the complaint nor the newspaper articles attribute any of those quotes to Ramasar.

It's true. But I think there's a certain carelessness that happens in social media, when people gloss over and conflate details of stories. I think that could be where this is coming from.

As despicable as Finlay's behavior may have been, the "farm animal" quote is not attributed to him; but if you read the comments section on Instagram immediately following his resignation, you'd think otherwise. 

Edited by fondoffouettes
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7 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

The only one who, in the realm of social media or traditional media, who has highlighted Ramasar's race -- as far as I'm aware -- is Ramasar himself, in the Instagram post that preceded the one above.

Yes, he actively solicited consideration by raising it himself.  That made it fair game as a talking point going forward.

 

7 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

As despicable as Finlay's behavior may have been, the "farm animal" quote is not attributed to him; but if you read the comments section on Instagram immediately following his resignation, you'd think otherwise. 

Indeed, Finlay was only responding to that by calling the women at ABT "sluts," but the comments attributed to the donor are far more inflammatory and newsworthy.

My first thought was that Ramasar's post was a bunch of straw-man arguments, but there is a lot of conflation going around.

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6 minutes ago, Helene said:

What he was accused of in the complaint was soliciting photos from and trading them with Finlay.  He admits to communications between him and Finlay done on private time and having received photos, but he no longer "possesses" them -- he claims he currently "possesses" photos of one consenting adult -- which he didn't further circulate.

Mmm, yes, interesting, his use of the present tense may be significant. And actually, does he say that he didn't circulate them? He says he didn't circulate "the photos that were sent to me." He could have circulated other photos he took himself — of that "single consenting adult" whose photos he now possesses, or even of others if he has subsequently deleted them.

Quote

It also needs to be said that I do not posses more than one NYCB female dancers photo. All photos are of a single Consenting adult, and the photos that were sent to me I have not circulated.

 

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2 hours ago, Helene said:

So that if my Apple ID is on automatic sign-in, I could potentially see "Or like the sluts they are," or "god damn, I'm going to get a video of [person] cumming..." or "I want to jerk off to watching u and...", plus the names of the participants.

Absolutely correct - but you (or she) would need to see the context in order to know these words were about her or the men's NYCB colleagues. Just seeing a few words and a name in the Apple system isn't enough to provide that context.  Without seeing a full statement or a specific name, the man could be talking about some other woman entirely and it would be none of her business.

I don't know what she saw, but my point is that the Apple system limits how much you see at one time - unless she "investigated" further.

Also, unless the unauthorized picture(s) of her were in that "most recent message" window when she opened the laptop - which is certainly possible - she would not have seen them without some clicking and scrolling around. 

Her lawyer (who artfully minimized her age and exaggerated her connection to NYCB) doesn't seem like the type to walk away from a juicy case based on the questionable legality of screenshots. 

I can certainly understand why she took them; I'm sure I would have done the same in her situation. But based on their provenance I'm not sure they can be used in a court case. That said, even if they can't be introduced into evidence in court, they will certainly be key in obtaining any settlement.

Edited by KayDenmark
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Helene says: "There are no other dancers exposed by name in the complaint: the only other person exposed in the complaint is a former SAB student, Craig Hall.   There are various references to "Principal Dancer," but no names given."

There is a dancer mentioned in the complaint, not accused of any wrongdoing,  who likely would prefer not to be directly involved in this dispute,  especially given the context in which that person's name is used.  There was no need to do this.  The scuzzy donor retained his anonymity.

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1 minute ago, On Pointe said:

There is a dancer mentioned in the complaint, not accused of any wrongdoing,  who likely would prefer not to be directly involved in this dispute,  especially given the context in which that person's name is used.  There was no need to do this.  The scuzzy donor retained his anonymity.

Yes, Alexa Maxwell (paragraph 61).

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18 minutes ago, KayDenmark said:

Absolutely correct - but you (or she) would need to see the context in order to know these words were about her or the men's NYCB colleagues. Just seeing a few words and a name in the Apple system isn't enough to provide that context.  Without seeing a full statement or a specific name, the man could be talking about some other woman entirely and it would be none of her business.

I don't know what she saw, but my point is that the Apple system limits how much you see at one time - unless she "investigated" further.

Perhaps it depends on how one has the Messages app configured. On my Mac, I've got two Messages panels: the left hand panel does indeed show a list of the most recent messages I have received from each person I have texted with, including the first line or two of text. The right-hand panel is wider (and can be made wider still) and shows full texts and photos from a single conversation, which I can scroll through from beginning to end with a swipe or two on my trackpad. Note that a single conversation can go on for months, if not for years (I in fact have a two-years long conversation open on my Mac right now), all of it within easy reach with a quick scroll, with no need to dig around. I someone walked up to my Mac right now, they could scroll through whatever conversation I had open without having to do much of anything. 

Edited by Kathleen O'Connell
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