Skepticism

Vivica Fox for the Psychic Enemies Network

Before there was John Edward . . . before there was Miss Cleo . . . before there was a pervasive sense of dignity and reason among all humans . . . there was The Psychic Friends Network. Using soap stars and aging singers, most notably Dionne Warwick, to sell their “psychic” consultations for $3.99/minute on the phone.

Apparently, actress Vivica A. Fox recorded a spot for The Psychic Friends Network that never aired, until last week. Now Vivica is pissed, saying that the clip “is using her unauthorized likeness, footage, voice and photographs as an endorsement of their service.” She’s asking that The Psychic Friends Network “cease and desist immediately.”

A few things, here:

1. Good luck getting the INTERNET to cease and desist.

2. Why did she record the bit if she didn’t want to endorse their services?

3. Can you sue a company that went bankrupt in 1998?

4. Is psychicfriendsnetwork.net a different company entirely? It’s hard to tell.

5. Didn’t she ask the Psychic Friends if something like this might happen?

6. Was she being held hostage by someone with a gun off-camera?

I’m totally serious about that last one. Watch the clip below and tell me she’s not acting very, very nervous, looking off to the side as if to say, “Is he still watching? Can I make a break for it? Can I encode a clever call for help that my family might recognize?” Here it is. Judge for yourself.

YouTube link

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca leads a team of skeptical female activists at Skepchick.org. She travels around the world delivering entertaining talks on science, atheism, feminism, and skepticism. There is currently an asteroid orbiting the sun with her name on it. You can follow her every fascinating move on Twitter or on Google+.

Related Articles

27 Comments

  1. I’m a postman (mailman) and one of my customers moved away a couple of years ago. Her copy of Psychic Circle (or somesuch) magazine still ends up at her old address every month though. Always wondered why they couldn’t forsee her move. :oD

  2. @Steve: “Whose entertainment, theirs or yours?”

    Oh, mine of course! I could even record the calls and do a podcast out of it. This is assuming I can find someone as clever as Helen to help out… and someone as clever as Ollie to do my part… and I’ll need a sound guy…

  3. I bet you’d get more calls if you tacked some woo onto it. Maybe holistic tax advice. “You have to look at the tax return as a whole. Your refund is greater that the sum of its individual deductions and don’t let them tell you any differently. They want you to fill in individual boxes because they can’t see the big picture.”

  4. Why can’t they just snail-mail me a return envelope, tell me what’s wrong, and I could use it to mail them a check?

    I mean, if they’re psychics, why do they need phones?

    I wonder what that would be like? (Cue harp music…)

    ‘ Hello Sir or Madame,

    Your family/pets is/are happy (sorta), unless they’re sad (kinda).

    Your lucky number, for today, is “K”.

    The PFN ‘

    Who knows, someone may even send a dollar,

    rod

  5. I think she looks wired rather than kidnapped. Like, totally high, man.

    If you have a smart agent then your contract includes a caveat of approval. If you don’t like the final edit, you can have it canned. Perhaps Ms Fox was sent the tape, said “Oh god I look coked out of my face, there’s no way this is airing” and cancelled the agreement. In which case she would be right to pursue a cease and desist, but I’d have no sympathy for her because AH HA HAH SHE DID A PSYCHIC AD.

  6. @Ezekiel: With a homepathic tax service you would pay your fee with a cup of water. Since all money in existence has at one point been in contact with water and all water has at one point been in contact with water then a cup of water has all of the money in the world in it. Homeopathic money! Have fun depositing that in your bank account.

  7. Anyone else see the spot on CNN this weekend where the psychic business is ‘booming’ because of the recession? The psychic interviewed said that she has begun to see a completely different type of customer – the businessman – coming in to ask her opinions on whether or not they should merge companies or invest, etc. The reporter in the end said that he was resigned to not knowing how it (psychics being able to tell the future) worked, just that it worked. UGH!!!!

  8. Homeopathic taxes work like this: Take your owed tax, convert it into $1 bills and put that into a bin. Now dilute that with 99 times as much in scrap paper. Repeat this process 6 times, taking 1/100 of the result each time. Take the resulting 6C tax preparation and send it to the IRS. This will not only satisfy them but it will also immunize you from future tax assessments.

  9. I will brook no criticism of the Psychic Friends Network. I phoned them once, and they were *so* right about me. They said I have family, and I *do* have family! They said there was a friend I’d been thinking of, who I hadn’t heard from in a long time, and there was! They said I’m an exceptionally perceptive person, and I am!

  10. I’d rather be practical and offer fiscal acupuncture. I stick this needle in your eye until you pay me to stop, and you’ll feel much better after I’ve gotten my money. If you don’t believe it works, I’ll give you your first session free.

    Though if I had to choose my woo, I always thought the voodoo doll was the best. Make a hard candy voodoo doll of yourself and get someone to lick all the good bits, and everyone wins. Voodoo acupuncture is at least an entertaining thought. Though with the hell children can put their toys through, somewhere there’d be a miserable red head who’d be cursing the creator of Raggedy Ann dolls. And after doing a google search to see if I spelled that right and found a wikipedia article on the subject, if what it claims is correct I’m now depressed because there’s an anti-vax connection I was unaware of.

    We need a stupid-vaccination. It seems to be catching.

  11. She regrets it today, and she’ll regret it tomorrow, and just when she thinks it’s behind her, someone new will start passing around that YouTube link and she’ll be able to get a whole new box of fresh regret. It’s the gift that keeps on giving, kinda like herpes.

Leave a Reply

You May Also Enjoy

Close
Close