Steve Harvey is defending the email he blasted to his staff demanding that they stop popping into his dressing room to talk without permission or "expect to be removed."
“Do not wait in any hallway to speak to me,” Harvey wrote in the email published Wednesday by Robert Feder, a media blogger in Chicago. “I hate being ambushed. … I promise you I will not entertain you in the hallway, and do not attempt to walk with me.”
In case you missed it, here's the full memo:
Good morning, everyone. Welcome back.
I’d like you all to review and adhere to the following notes and rules for Season 5 of my talk show.
There will be no meetings in my dressing room. No stopping by or popping in. NO ONE.
Do not come to my dressing room unless invited.
Do not open my dressing room door. IF YOU OPEN MY DOOR, EXPECT TO BE REMOVED.
My security team will stop everyone from standing at my door who have the intent to see or speak to me.
I want all the ambushing to stop now. That includes TV staff.
You must schedule an appointment.
I have been taken advantage of by my lenient policy in the past. This ends now. NO MORE.
Do not approach me while I’m in the makeup chair unless I ask to speak with you directly. Either knock or use the doorbell.
I am seeking more free time for me throughout the day.
Do not wait in any hallway to speak to me. I hate being ambushed. Please make an appointment.
I promise you I will not entertain you in the hallway, and do not attempt to walk with me.
If you’re reading this, yes, I mean you.
Everyone, do not take offense to the new way of doing business. It is for the good of my personal life and enjoyment.
Thank you all,
Harvey told ET's Kevin Frazier Thursday he was shocked by the response to the note and that he probably should have "handled it a little bit differently." But he stood by the message he was trying to send.
"I just didn't want to be in this prison anymore where I had to be in this little room, scared to go out and take a breath of fresh air without somebody approaching me, so I wrote the letter," Harvey told ET. "I don't apologize about the letter, but it's kind of crazy what people who took this thing and ran, man. I appreciate you asking me."
Harvey never returned requests from BuzzFeed News for comment when social media reactions to the note exploded. Lance Crayton, a production director for The Steve Harvey Morning Show, told BuzzFeed News that "Steve Harvey is a great man. ... Anyone making disparaging comments couldn't [possibly] know Steve personally."