“Me Too” Hits Disney: Mogul Crumbles as Disturbing Allegations, Lawsuit Arise

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Lightning over Cinderella Castle at Disney World

Credit: Inside the Magic

Trigger Warning: This story will discuss SA allegations. Please be advised. 

The Disney community has been shaken, and the story behind the fall of a once-Disney media mogul is both saddening and deeply upsetting.

Exterior of Cinderella Castle
Credit: Disney

If you are a Disney fan, or someone who enjoys learning about what is going on in the parks, you likely come to websites like ours which report on the news and ongoing experiences in the Walt Disney World Resort theme parks. Now in 2023, it’s no longer just news sites but rather social media influencers who are able to deliver the news and reviews and bring you into theme parks like Magic Kingdom through your phone screen.

One of the original Disney news “influencers” who not only created a highly successful blog site, the largest Disney chat site, and the man behind a platinum Disney travel agency, has fallen. For many who loved his work and trusted his opinions for years — this story may leave you unable to recognize the man you have been watching for years due to recent alleged allegation.

Me Too Movement

To understand the story and why it is being so widely discussed in the Walt Disney World community, we have to talk about the Me Too movement.

Back in 2017, the hashtag #MeToo arose on social media and quickly dominated news feeds. The Me Too movement actually begins many years before that, however, in 2006. The phrase “Me Too” was initially used in this context on social media in 2006, on Myspace, by sexual assault survivor and activist Tarana Burke.

Me Too
Credit: Me Too

If you do not know Taran Burke, Women’s History describes her journey perfectly: “In 1996, Burke was working as the director of a youth camp when she encountered a young woman that would have a profound effect on her. After holding an all-girl bonding session at the camp, a young woman asked to speak with Burke privately about experiencing sexual abuse. Although Burke was unable to respond thoroughly in the moment, this encounter would become the foundation for the ‘me too’ Movement she created a decade later.

This created the foundation of the Me Too movement, a movement for those who have experienced sexual abuse, sexual harassment, and rape culture, to finally speak up and not fear the ones who had been doing this to them and silencing them.

The movement would take viral steam in 2017 after film producer Harvey Weinstein was accused of sexually abusing over 80 women in the film industry. Since then, we have seen even the largest moguls, such as Kevin Spacey, fall. Some who were proven innocent, like Johnny Depp, were still cast away from Hollywood (Depp lost his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean) just due to the allegations.

What did this all prove? People are not standing to let any abusive action slide by.

Photo of "Hollywood Vampires" on tour during the Johnny Depp Health issue
Credit: Hollywood Vampires

Related: Disney Guests Caught Abusing Disability Pass to Skip Lines

Who is Pete Werner?

This story revolves around Peter Warner, the now ex-owner of The DIS, and Dreams Unlimited Travels, a platinum Disney travel agency. According to his profile on The DIS. Pete’s occupation as listed on the site is President of Werner Technologies, Inc, Chief Executive Officer of Dreams Unlimited Travel, Inc. as well as Webmaster of all sites in the Destination-Orlando network. In his biography, Pete goes on to explain that his favorite attraction is Pirates of the Caribbean, his favorite Resort is Disney’s Polynesian Resort, and he has more personal preferences.

Credit: The Dis Unplugged

Towards the end of the page, Werner left his words of wisdom, stating, “Never forget what Disney is all about. It’s about believing in magic. You can, if you choose, focus on the negative, but then you’ve missed the entire point of Walt’s vision. For those of us who call Walt Disney World our “home”, we have discovered a place where life can stop, if only for a few days. We’ve found a place where, regardless of who we are and what we do, that we can look at this “world” through the eyes of a child, either our own or the one that lives inside each of us. What an amazing legacy Walt left to the world.” Sadly enough, it seems that the workplace he created was anything but magical and, for some of his employees, anything but positive.

For those who may have never seen the DIS Boards, (another Disney fan site created by Werner), Pete described the site as “Congratulations! You’ve found your way to the largest and liveliest Disney discussion forums on the web!! We have more than 40 forums here dealing with everything from Disney theme parks, resorts, restaurants, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland and much, much more.

This forum is designed to help our new visitors navigate their way around our site, and our discussion forums. Please feel free to ask any questions you might have about our guidelines, forums or any of the information we have contained on our website. We’re glad you’ve chosen to join us and hope you will stay around a while!”

Not only did Pete create multiple Disney websites and a highly successful travel agency, but he also started a YouTube channel with one of the most popular Disney podcasts – The DIS Unplugged. This podcast happened both in audio format and in video format in Pete’s home, which allowed the channel to develop a strong following and love for the team that works at The DIS.

The End of Pete Werner at The DIS

On August 2, The Dis put out a statement from John Magi, President and Co-Owner of Dreams Unlimited Travel, Inc..

Effective immediately, Peter Werner has resigned his position as CEO of Dreams Unlimited Travel, Inc. and as Owner/Editor-in-Chief of The DIS (as well as all related websites and properties). John Magi, President and Co-Owner of Dreams Unlimited Travel, will continue to run the day-to-day operations of Dreams Unlimited Travel, Inc. and assume the CEO responsibilities as well.

Corey Martin, the President of The DIS, will maintain his role with both The DIS and its affiliated sites while taking on executive responsibilities. Mr. Werner’s ownership interest in the above businesses is currently being divested. If you have any questions about Dreams Unlimited Inc, please contact John Magi at John@DreamsUnlimitedTravel.com. For questions about The DIS, please contact Corey Martin at Corey@disneyinfo.com.

The Dis
Credit: The Dis

This notice shocked a lot of Disney fans in the community, as Werner began creating his Disney empire in 1999, so stepping away from in 24 years later is a big deal. It also became a popular subject matter within the Disney community as tales of overspending, extreme debt, and abusive behavior came to light. These rumors began after Werner checked himself into rehab, which he publically announced after relapsing on alcohol, and was taking steps to get back on track.

Spend Spend Spend

At the moment, these claims are alleged, but it appears Pete spent nearly $1,000,000 in personal expenses, leaving his company to be sued by Amex to recoup its losses.

The constant spending on Werner’s part left him unable to make several paydays, according to those who have/had work for the company. It seems that pay would typically come; however, it could be up to a month late, which would perpetuate a cycle of late payments.

The Tales of Abuse 

Peter Werner now has an alleged string of both sexual abuse and employee abuse stories that have come to light from employees. It is reported that “Aside from the fact that he has had some questionable “relationships,” with his employees, and several of them are alleging abuse. He is also, being accused of having cameras in his bathroom to spy on guests and employees.”

Related: Guests Share Heartbreaking Stories of Child Abuse Witnessed at Disney World

Credit: Disney

Previous employee Tyler Crouch spoke out on Twitter regarding Pete’s abuse of his employees. He said:

“I’m going to come clean. I worked for The DIS for almost 2 years. What follows is all alleged. It was a shit show. Pete Werner was an abusive boss. He constantly judged you for your work. Demanded you work over 40 hours a week. And pitted co-workers against one another. I spoke my mind and was chastised from the company for it. And it’s not just Pete. He has followers that do his bidding. When I expressed my opinion, I was thrown under the bus by my coworkers. The Dis is a disgusting place in my opinion. They all hate each other.

Pete will blind with gifts in the beginning as all abusers do. He then denigrates you for any small mistake you make. In my opinion I’ve never met a more sour human being than him. Pete has done his own damage. But what I think is almost more damming is that all his subordinates let him get away with it. Some of my coworkers choose money over what was right. And they’ve disregarded and hurt multiple people because of it. Pete fostered a culture of hatred, and it trickled down.

Just remember: everything you’ve heard about Pete Werner is probably true. And his subordinates knew it was happening and worked to hide it for monetary value. The only reason I was afraid to say anything was legal action. But everything I’m saying is alleged and an opinion.

This is all alleged: When Pete told me they no longer had the money to keep me on, they let me go, I worked for another month FOR FREE. Then I realized he was paying another Disneyland correspondent under the table almost all my salary. That was a final straw.

They made me sign a noncompete and wouldn’t let me out of it even though they were the ones that let me go. I tried to work for other outlets but was eventually cast away because someone told them I was in a contract. So bottom line: not only did they let me go, they bullied others into dropping me too.”

Cinderella castle at Walt Disney Resort
Credit: Disney

Tyler concluded, “I will say: I am happy to have met friends through the DIS. Some have stuck with me, some haven’t. But truthfully, with the abuse and mistreatment, I’m a richer person because of my experience. Overall, it was a terrible job, but I would never return some of the people I’ve met through it.”

Another previous employee, Steve Porter, took to Twitter to share the message from John Maji and said, “A better future ahead! So happy for my friends who can work in an environment free from stress and fear.”

Current employee Ryan Clavin went live on his YouTube account, sharing what it was like to work for the company. In the video, Ryan talks about the sadness he feels having found out about the recent sexual abuse allegations. He plans to write out his thoughts and experiences in essay form.

The following abuse stories are drawn from various former employees of Werner’s. All stories are currently alleged.

Sean Faulk is the current owner of Moving to Orlando, which he founded alongside Pete Werner during the Covid lockdowns. Before his current position, he was a travel agent for Dreams Unlimited Travel and a frequent panelist for The DIS Unplugged. According to Tattle, “By Sean’s admission, he was working as an escort when Pete became a frequent client. As their “relationship” progressed, Pete began pressuring Sean into becoming his boyfriend, which Sean eventually accepted. Pete showered Sean with lavish gifts, which he would then hold over his lover’s head, such as purchasing an expensive DVC contract in Sean’s name and then refusing to pay it off if Sean didn’t do as Pete wished.”

Related: Guests Shocked at Further Displays of Child Abuse at Disney Parks

The site continues to explain, “Sean recounted an occurrence where Pete got him drunk and attempted to assault him while they were on vacation. Sean pushed him off and went to the bathroom to sleep for the rest of the night.

Pete proposed to Sean, but Sean turned him down.

When Sean finally left Pete, Pete tried to fire him but was supposedly stopped by John Magi, who feared a lawsuit. According to Sean, there was fear that if someone were to blow the whistle on Pete’s behavior, it would be Sean. Sean also mentioned that one team member asked Sean to keep quiet because his allegations could sink the business and cost the rest of the staff their jobs.”

EPCOT at Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: Disney

Former panelist of The Dis Unplugged podcast Dustin West also spoke out on Tattle. According to the site:

Pete groomed Dustin into a relationship, despite Dustin being a straight man. Eventually Dustin left Pete and moved back to Virginia, where he found work and married a woman.

In July 2023, Dustin began posting to Tattle, where he revealed that Pete had coerced him into a relationship and sexually abused him. He would later post his story to the Disboards. The ensuing outrage was the catalyst for Pete’s removal from the shows and the flood of criticism from other members.

Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park with only a few people around it.
Credit: @ResortTV1 via @DisneyGlimpses

Corey Fiascanaro (Fiasco) is a former producer and panelist for the Dis Unplugged. He took to DIS Boards to share his side of the story:

Hey all. Obviously I’m me. I’ve been reading up on all the allegations that’s been coming out and it’s made me sick for a number of reasons. I’m still running through the events I personally experienced and trying to make sense of them in the context of everything that’s come out. I applaud people’s bravery and courage for sharing such personal aspects of their life in the hope that others don’t suffer the same. These people will always have an ear to vent to in me if they ever need it and I hope I’d have one too.

With that being said, you shouldn’t be assuming people on the team knew what happened and bashing them. Everyone is and was dealing with stuff of their own and it’s up to them to share that as they are ready too. For all you know other people have their own traumatic experiences and you are just assuming something else based on video from a show where people talk about theme parks. You really have no idea what people have been through except what information they have voluntarily provided. Just because someone works in a field that puts them in the public eye, doesn’t mean that they are not people who could be going through their own traumas, pressures, fears, etc.

Be kind to eachother, do right by one another, and support people who have been hurt.

Again, all of these allegations are just that, at the moment — but they are horrible to read and sad to have to believe to potentially be true. For now, we are glad to see the employees who currently work for the company are all still allegedly employed and can now focus on continuing to produce high-quality Disney content for their followers to enjoy. The company has clearly demonstrated that they do not support this type of behavior, and is looking to move forward in a positive light.

What do you think of this story? Let us know in the comments below. 

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