Monday, January 30, 2006


This has nothing to do with Oprah

Ok, so the whole James Frey thing. I understand how O is pissed. I would be. He lied to her face and used her name to make millions. (Pamie says it better) That's not the point. The point is he lied. He went around saying that this was his life and telling people that 12 step programs were dumb.

There is a huge difference between something that is true and something that is based in truth. I am in law school, that's something that you learn. Use the facts you've got to make your case. You the law you've got to win. See how your facts can be turned around and used against you. Manipulation of facts and truth is life. You embellish to get a laugh or a tear or a reaction of any kind.

But if you're making money off something by lying, it's called fraud. In North Carolina, the elements for fraud are that person knowingly or recklessly make a false representation with the intention that someone rely on it leading to their injury when they do.

James Frey knowingly told lies about being in jail etc. so that his book would be more interesting so more people would buy it. He told people to stop trusting in addiction programs to help themselves. People relied on what he said and some people were apparently injured.

He shopped the book around as fiction and switched it to the "truth" when nobody would buy it as a novel. He lied to Oprah to her face on a program watched by millions of people so that she would endorse him so that he could become a millionaire. And that's the problem. The book would have been just as good with bits of reality and bits of fiction combined. Look at Dan Brown's books. There is a hint of truth that people seek to connect themselves to the book. But it's a story. And people know it's a story while they're reading it. Frey could have admitted to embellishing the facts the first time he was on Oprah and she probably would have continued to leave her seal on the book jacket and then he'd make bank on his next one.

The point is, people don't like being duped. It makes you feel stupid which in turn pisses you off. He was an idiot to think he could get away with it for so long and deserved to get yelled at.

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