Michelle Buckley

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Thursday, September 13, 2007

If I Did It

Surely you know by now that OJ Simpson's faux-confessional book: IF I DID IT, which "hypothetically" chronicles the murders of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ron Goldman, will soon see the light of day -- has made its way to bookshelves near you.

The book's title has changed to IF I DID IT: CONFESSIONS OF THE KILLER and it was officially released today. It was published by Beaufort Books. Fred Goldman is out stumping on Oprah today promoting the book, which Oprah says she won't read or buy.


The book initially was to have been published last year by ReganBooks, a HarperCollins imprint. It was scrapped at the last minute because of public criticsm for what was seen as commercial exploitation of the murders. OJ's book advance and anticipated royalty payments were perceived as "blood money" by an outraged public.

Rights to the book passed to Goldman’s relatives, after a long legal fight to help satisfy a $33-plus million judgment the Goldmans won against Simpson in a civil trial, following his murder acquittal in 1995.

Now that the book is finally being published, a portion of the proceeds will benefit the newly formed Ron Goldman Foundation for Justice, created to help victims of violent crimes.

IF I DID IT: CONFESSIONS OF THE KILLER, is #51 in books on Amazon.com as of this post. It's the #1 Nonfiction/True Crime book on amazon.com. Barnes & Noble plans to stock the book, but won't promote it. It's the #8 bestseller on the B&N site. Various chains will handle the distribution and sale of the book differently.

Patricia Schroeder, president and chief executive of the Association of American Publishers, at one time described the book's developments like this: "I think it's going to stir an awful lot of debate and make the culture take a real look at itself, and that may not be unhealthy."

Of the original book and OJ's planned tv appearances, Fred Goldman initially said: "It is an all-time low for television. To imagine that a major network would put a murderer on TV to have him tell how he would murder the mother of his children and my son is beyond comprehension. It’s morally reprehensible to me... to think you are willing to give somebody airtime about how they would murder two people."

Now that Mr. Goldman is benefitting, it looks like his tune has changed. I bet once the book is out, you won't be able to turn to a single station and not watch an interview with him promoting this morbid tome. As an aside, Denise Brown, Nicole's sister, is against the sell of the book, equating it to blood money. But the rumor is, that's just sour grapes, because her family isn't benefitting.

Sadly, due to our society's voyeuristic nature, I predict this will be a bestseller and the news media will gladly rehash every finite detail of those grizzly murders.

What are your thoughts? Did you watch the Oprah show featuring Mr. Goldman? (I'm out of town and didn't get to see it -- but I will definitely try to catch it later.) Will you buy the book or boycott it?

Is it okay for one party (the Goldmans) to benefit from the publishing of the book -- but not okay for other parties (OJ, the Browns) to benefit? Does the fact that sales will help other violent crime victims make the book's publishing less distasteful? Is "blood money" considered "blood money" no matter who benefits? Are you interested in this "hypothetical" account of the killings? If you were the ghostwriter offered $100k to work on this book, how hard would it have been for you to take the money and participate in a project like this?
Blogger Rose said...

Someone sent the e-book through a yahoogroup I'm in. I guess I'll read it soon.

7:41 PM, September 20, 2007  
Blogger JerseyTjej said...

Tacky and distastefull but like Patricia said, it may promote discussion and in the end, that may be healing for some. Those particular Oprah shows haven't started to air here but I am looking forward to seeing it. I won't buy it.

11:52 PM, September 20, 2007  
Blogger Michelle said...

Rose - it's already online for free. Wow, that was fast.

J - I won't buy it or read it either.

11:00 AM, September 21, 2007  

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