26th August 13:58
Windfall Publicity for Al Franken's Book!
From a New York Times editorial, 8/13/03:
Windfall Publicity for Al Franken's Book
So, the satirist Al Franken writes a book making fun of the Fox News
Network, mocking Bill O'Reilly and the gang, and its response is to
The publisher of Mr. Franken's new book -- "Lies, and the Lying Liars
Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right" -- must be
having heart flutters.
You can't buy this kind of publicity.
This strange lawsuit has all the feel of an O'Reilly shouting match
shoved onto an unlikely new stage: the Supreme Court of New York
For Fox, the issue is -- among other things -- Mr. Franken's use of
the words "fair and balanced" in its subtitle.
The network's lawyers are arguing that those words belong to Fox as
part of its trademark.
(Journalism schools need to take note here.)
Mr. Franken and Mr. O'Reilly have had one or two public set-tos
already, and Fox's complaint sounds like a collection of things Mr.
O'Reilly wishes he'd remembered to say at their last encounter.
It calls Mr. Franken "deranged," a "parasite," "sophomoric" and
lacking "any serious depth or insight."
In a word, Fox apparently does not think that Mr. Franken is amusing,
prompting the comedian to threaten to trademark the word "funny" for a
For years now, liberals have wrung their hands over the fact that the
right wing had a monopoly on acerbic, unfair and entertaining
Mr. Franken is clearly attempting to fill the gap, and for some reason
the Fox people appear to be doing everything they can to help pave his
Their legal case, however, seems far too frivolous for the real
What about Judge Judy?
Could FUX be getting a share of the royalties?