Skip to comments.Publishers Say Fact-Checking Is Too Costly (Dino Media Extinction Alert)
Posted on 01/30/2006 3:37:14 AM PST by abb
Last Thursday, publishing-industry veteran Nan Talese was excoriated on television by Oprah Winfrey for publishing James Frey's 2003 "A Million Little Pieces," a bestselling memoir about the author's struggle to overcome drug dependency that he has since admitted is partly fictitious.
But on Friday morning, Ms. Talese walked into 22nd-floor offices in Midtown Manhattan to a standing ovation from her colleagues. Soon afterward, she received a call of support from Peter Olson, chief executive of Bertelsmann AG's Random House Inc. publishing arm.
"I've gotten more than 500 emails over the last few days, and the overwhelming majority have been supportive," says Ms. Talese whose imprint, Nan A. Talese, is part of Random House's Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group.
Indeed, many members of the publishing industry have rallied around Ms. Talese and Random House, saying that they would have published "A Million Little Pieces" as well and could have been duped just as easily. Unlike journalists, publishers have never seen it as their purview to verify that the information in nonfiction books is true. Editors and publishers say the profit-margins in publishing don't allow for hiring fact-checkers. Instead, they rely on authors to be honest, and on their legal staffs to avoid libels suits. "An author brings a manuscript saying it represents the truth, and that relationship is one of trust," says Ms. Tale
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
"You can't handle the truth!!!"
The truth is until the whole thing blew up in her face, Oprah didn't care in the least that she was foisting lies.
And that attitude has done the MSM a whole lotta good, hasn't it?
There are none so blind...
Oprah is worried that someone might decide to go for some really deep pockets and sue the pants off her for making this book a best seller. Were I the doctors and rehab center in MN that this lying author maligned, I'd hire a really good lawyer and clean out Oprah's prodigious bank account. She's fortunate that her audience is a cult of ignoramuses who would never conceive of questioning her judgement.
Hey Orca, how about you do a little fact checking before you give a book a million dollars worth of free publicity.
" "An author brings a manuscript saying it represents the truth, and that relationship is one of trust," says Ms. Tale"
You've got to be kidding me.
Is their reputation worth so little?
Will they publish anything based on trust with NO verification? Or is it because they liked what they read and published it because of that? Truth is costly, eh? Well having NO credibility is deve$tating. Liars tend to leave a bad taste in your mouth.
And she knew for a while but did nothing until her sheeple forced her to make a statement.
Um, no. When it first made the rounds of publishing houses as a work of fiction, no one would touch it.
Unlike journalists, publishers have never seen it as their purview to verify that the information in nonfiction books is true.
So, they care nothing for the reputation of their name?
Oh, please ... with the price they charge for books today they are pleading poverty? Nonsense!
yaeh..like we WANT to pay for rumors.......
Thx. Didn't realize they have a free feature. Note also the article about WB and filesharing...
American self-esteem training at work. Try telling someone that their judgement is poor.
WEll, that explians it- she didn't have a change of heart about supporting this book, her lawyer gave her some legal advice on how to protect her millions. (sigh)
Don't forget Nobel Prize winner Rigoberta Menchu
2) The article is right, in that publishers accepting what authors give them as "true" is nothing new. In the 1970s, Robert Maddox published "The New Left and the Origins of the Cold War," in which he exposed massive fraud in six or seven "New Left" history books that were widely heralded when they came out (such things as using ellipses to join together different speeches from different days!) But Maddox's greater revelation was that the publishers and REFEREES didn't bother to check this stuff.
This whole thing was repeated with Bellisiles' idiotic book on guns ("Arming America") where, again, the publishers didn't bother to check citations . . . NOR DID REFEREES.
This is becoming a huge problem in both fiction/non-fiction trade publishing and in "academic" publishing.
It'll come to an end when a bunch of State U grads, having paid for an"education" and having received fiction, file a class action lawsuit against their alma mater....
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