Justin Timberlake APOLOGIZES to Britney Spears for 'contributing to the problem of misogyny' 20 years after breakup

JUSTIN Timberlake has apologized to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson for "contributing to the problem of misogyny."

Justin has been criticized in recent days for past comments he made about his ex-girlfriend Britney, and the way he failed to stand up for Janet after their shocking Super Bowl 2004 performance.

"I understand that I fell short in these moments and in many others and benefitted from a system that condones misogyny and racism," he wrote.

"I specifically want to apologize to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson both individually, because I care for and respect these women and I know I failed," he added.

Justin and Britney dated from 1998-2002.

Although the pair's relationship seemed perfect at the time, fans have come down on Justin for how he spoke about his ex-girlfriend after their split.

Britney's fans were especially struck by a new documentary, Framing Britney Spears, and its coverage of her failed relationship with Justin, now 40.

Many believed Justin made Britney into the "villain" of their break-up, which soon led to her downward spiral including drug use accusations and hospitalizations.

One angry fan wrote: "Justin Timberlake took full advantage of the sh**ty misogyny and double standards of the early 00s for his own gain. Without Brit, there’s no him. He was absolutely nothing special. Still aint s**t. #FreeBritney"

Another wrote: "Wow, I'm really here for the Britney Spears documentary calling Justin Timberlake on his absolute bulls**t."

In reponse, Justin added: "The industry is flawed. It sets men, especially white men, up for success. It's designed this way.

"As a man in a privileged position, I have to be vocal about this. Because of my ignorance, I didn't recognize it for all that it was while it was happening in my own life but I do not want to ever benefit from others being pulled down."

He went on to insist he wants to take "accountability" for his actions, and acknowledged the apology was just a "first step."

After the split in 2002, Justin told Rolling Stone he’d been cheated on three times in a recent relationship.

He continued to egg on the rumors during a 2003 interview with Barbara Walters, as the former NSYNC member revealed he promised Britney to never reveal the reason for their breakup.

Despite his alleged promise, Justin seemingly confirmed the cheating rumors when he released the Cry Me a River video.

In 2004 he caused an international scandal when Janet Jackson's breast, adorned with a nipple shield, was exposed by him for about half a second.

What was later referred to as a "wardrobe malfunction" saw CBS fined a record $550,000 by the FTC.

However, Janet was forced to apologize and her career nosedived after the moment, branded "nipplegate", while Justin was invited back four years later to perform again.

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