Above the Line Publisher Blames Strike, ‘Hubris’ for Pay Issues, Says He’ll ‘Probably’ Shut Site Down ‘Short Term’

“I failed to forecast the full fallout of the strike,” Patrick Graham writes Friday night

Above the line Patrick Graham

In a statement Friday night, Patrick Graham, publisher of the industry-focused website Above the Line, blamed the 2023 Hollywood strike as well as his own “hubris” for the site’s financial problems. He said he will “probably” take the site down for the “short term.”

The statement came in response to the exit of Above the Line editor Edward Douglas, who quit Friday morning with a statement he posted to the site accusing Graham of not paying staffers. “As of now, I’m owed $16,000,” Douglas wrote.

In his response, Graham admitted to not paying staff, writing that “I am to blame” for both the “disgruntled writers and editors that are behind on getting paid” and for “not seeing” the likelihood of the strike or its likely impact.

Writing that he “failed to forecast the full fallout of the strike,” as well as what he called the “pending collapse of the streaming model” and related reckless spending, Graham wrote that he shouldn’t have expanded and taken on new staff last year. “My hubris believed I could make it work. I was wrong,” he said.

“I take full responsibility for every action I’ve taken,” Graham continued.

Graham also vowed that “my outstanding debt” to current and former employees “will be paid,” but said that “for the short term, I’ll probably bring Above the Line down.”

Graham however indicated that Below the Line, the parent website of Above the Line, will not be shutting down. He concluded by promising, “I will do everything in my power to right this ship.”

Douglas took over as interim editor in October after former editor-in-chief Jeff Sneider left the site and accused Graham of owing him $15,800.


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