by Hunter Dublin | September 29, 2022
Based in the report by The Daily Beast, the proprietor of The Blacklist is suing her ex-partner and soon-to-be ex-husband, a former brand representative, and the person who first publicly linked their name to the infamously anonymous publication.
The Blacklist and its widely following Instagram page have recently provided some of the spicier cannabis business rumors, gossip, and consumer product reviews, mostly thanks to anonymous insider leaks. Despite its popularity, The Blacklist has come under heavy fire, including from Bay Area rapper and CEO of Cookies Berner, who described it as a "well-known extortionist" in an interview with SF Weekly last year. His claims were refuted by The Blacklist.
Shalon Doney, the company's registered founder and owner in Los Angeles, is suing Adam Campbell, her husband (the couple filed for divorce in 2021 but those proceedings are still pending), and Matthew Wagner, a man who worked with the married couple to help monetize the publication, for "unlawfully misappropriating her federal intellectual property rights," according to the report.
Wagner has experience as a consultant, promoter, performer, and owner of adult nightclubs. Campbell, a Montana-native and cannabis producer, claimed that because he had a federal cannabis-related offense on his record, he made the decision not to formally participate in the company's creation.
In fact, none of the parties contests the fact that Doney is and has always been The Blacklist's only legal proprietor. Since Doney and Campbell are still legally married and the business is regarded as a community asset of their union, even if Doney is the publication's actual owner, Campbell will be entitled to a half-ownership when the couple's divorce is finally formalized.
But in his answer to the lawsuit, Wagner claims that Doney made him a promise: "If Wagner could find out how to commercialize TBO [The Blacklist Online], he would be given a 1/3 ownership interest in TBO at the moment Wagner was recruited (and continuously thereafter).
Wagner's filing also indicates he started to secure five-figure sponsorship deals for the publication in 2019, eventually even renting a portion of the couple's home where he "literally and figuratively worked day and night, side by side, with Doney and her husband." This promise was repeatedly reiterated by both Doney and her husband, Defendant Adam Campbell.
Following Doney and Campbell's divorce, according to Wagner and Campbell, the team started to argue. Doney claimed that she fired Wagner from the project after learning that he had allegedly participated in an underage sex trafficking incident in Thailand. However, Wagner had already returned to the United States months before the alleged incident, so he said, "It's just not true, and that's why I'm not afraid to face it."
By the time the case ended in November 2021, Wagner claimed that Doney had been "physically and verbally hostile" toward him.