Michele Corriston
November 29, 2017 AT 05:52 PM EST

As celebrities swarm Twitter condemning Matt Lauer, one of the former Today show co-anchor’s famous friends is standing behind him.

“Sad about @MLauer great guy, highly skilled & empathetic w guests & a real gentleman to my family & me,” he tweeted Wednesday. “News is a flirty business & it seems like current epidemic of #SexHarassmentAllegations may be criminalizing courtship & conflating it w predation.”

The 74-year-old TV news reporter added: “#SexHarassment should be confined to situations where superior imposes himself on subordinate who feels unable to complain because of power of perp or feared consequences to victim’s employment. Shouldn’t be used to get even w bad bosses or hated ex’s.”

NBC announced early Wednesday that Lauer, 59, had been fired after the network received a “detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior” on Monday, with reason to believe “this may not have been an isolated incident.”

Lauer, who joined the network in 1992 as a newsreader on Today, had been co-anchor of the morning show since January 1997 and reportedly signed a $20 million dollar contract last year.

A source told PEOPLE that Lauer was let go due to alleged inappropriate sexual behavior throughout 2014, including at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

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