LOS ANGELES • Actress Portia de Rossi defended Ellen DeGeneres on Monday after a social media campaign called for the talk show host to step down, following reports of a hostile work environment for employees on set.

De Rossi, who has been married to DeGeneres for 12 years, posted an "I Stand By Ellen" graphic on her Instagram account.

"To all our fans… we see you. Thank you for your support," de Rossi, 47, wrote on Monday.

The former Ally McBeal (1997 to 2002) actress also added the hashtags #stopbotattacks and #bekindtooneanother to her post.

The Ellen DeGeneres Show (2003 to present) has won multiple Emmy awards, but both the talk show and DeGeneres have been under fire for weeks.

There were complaints by former productions staff about a hostile workplace that included racism and bullying by upper management and claims that the comedienne is mean-spirited.

Warner Bros Television, which produces the talk show, conducted an internal investigation and said last week that staffing changes and other measures were being taken to address the issue.

DeGeneres, 62, also e-mailed staff, expressing regrets about the gulf between the show's happy public face and what was sometimes happening backstage.

Rather than damping criticism, the developments led to the #ReplaceEllen hashtag, which went viral on Monday.

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