Fox News and Bill O'Reilly Accused of Airing "Distorted" Re-Creation of Florida Man's Email

Categories: Broward News
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Email comes in, new email allegedly goes out. You can't explain that.
Fox News has been accused of distorting its news content in the past. Often.

Now, a St. Petersburg man says he sent an email to Fox News host Bill O'Reilly, and it ended up being displayed on his show, the O'Reilly Factor. Well, that man says part of his email ended up on the show, along with new words and concepts that ended up in front of O'Reilly's massive television audience.

Jeremy Kopchak says he was watching Bill O'Reilly interview noted atheist Richard Dawkins last week when he became "frustrated by Bill's usual demeaning of Dawkins" and sent an email to the Factor.

What Kopchak sent to O'Reilly, he says, wasn't exactly what O'Reilly displayed to the nation.

Here's the text of the email Kopchak claims he sent to O'Reilly:

Bill, have you read Richard Dawkin's book 'The God Delusion'? You should have the guts to investigate both sides before being so pompous in your faith while completely discounting the critical thinking of atheists. The truth will stand up to any scrutiny.

Jeremy Kopchak
St. Petersburg, Florida

Here's how it went on the Factor:



Somewhere between Kopchak's computer and national television, he says the phrase "while completely discounting the critical thinking of atheists" turned into "that you would attack Dawkins."

As evidenced in the clip, O'Reilly's talking point turned into Kopchak's claim that O'Reilly attacked Dawkins -- a claim Kopchak never actually made, according to the purported email.

That leads to the question -- if the aforementioned premises are true, could Kopchak make a case for libel?

It's possible, according to Joseph Russomanno, a PhD, author, and professor of media law at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication:

...Jeremy would seem to have two possible claims -- libel if he feels his reputation was damaged, or false light if his reputation was not damaged. Some states don't recognize false light, so that would be important to know.

With libel, because O'Reilly is a public figure, Jeremy would have to prove O'Reilly made the false information public with actual malice -- knowing the information was false or showing reckless disregard for the truth.

Amy Sohnen, executive producer of the O'Reilly Factor, tells the Pulp that the length of the email was the only alteration made to the email.

"We trimmed the letter for time but did not change the meaning," she says.

You can't explain that.

[h/t: Jeremy Kopchak]


Follow The Pulp on Facebook and on Twitter: @ThePulpBPB. Follow Matthew Hendley on Facebook and on Twitter: @MatthewHendley.

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23 comments
Elaine Knight
Elaine Knight

The only thing Oreilly is good at is tooting his own horn while making fun along with his friend Laura Ingraham of people who get disability checks. All he does is criticize other people. Oh, yes the GREAT oreilly who does no wrong. One day you will need the very people you put down and laugh at.

Scretch
Scretch

Nancy Grace would be proud

Seeiteveryday
Seeiteveryday

OK, time to sue the editors of every paper in the United States, since they routinely edit letters to the editor before publication.  And Russomano, PhD, sounds like a complete idiot.

Obviouslyobvious
Obviouslyobvious

Reckless disregard for the truth is open and shut. Someone must have edited that email on the staff and they must have known that they were doing it.

Dave Butler
Dave Butler

I'm not siding with O'Reilly but the portions of the email shown on the video are easily forged. I could show the exact same thing that matches what O'Reilly put on their program just by composing a text file and loading it into Outlook. Is it more likely O'Reilly's camp changed the email text for their idea of brevity? Absolutely. But I can't side with the email's author either unless I saw the raw email message straight from the mail server. No one doubts this but it's a weak argument.

Broad Road
Broad Road

Matthew Hendley: Thanks for sharing this.

Richard Sanderson
Richard Sanderson

"No Spin Zone" is one of Bill's catchphrases.

Oh Really, O'Reilly!

nanook5
nanook5

boats are heavy but float on the water - YOU CAN'T EXPLAIN THAT!

SMDrPepper
SMDrPepper

It is hardly shocking to find out ORiely an FOX edits to try an make everyone who isnt in lock step with them look bad.  They do this all the time.  Never mind the outright lies such as the supposed election fraud and the ACORN fraud.  They edited everything to make it look like it was happening and ACORN was the most evil people around.  When in reality it was the exact opposite.I still contend that FOX needs to remove that word in their name...you know, that "news" thing, since they only manufacture BS on there.Like how they call the 99%s facists an every other horrible name in the book yet spew praise for the tea baggers who have proven they are violent xenophobes.

Virgil Starkwell
Virgil Starkwell

The average age of an O'Reilly viewer is 60+.  His fans blab on endlessly about his ratings, but on his best night, he captures approximately 1 percent of the population.

Old, xenophobic farts watch that crap.

No one with a brain.

Tquass
Tquass

Where's the original email? Why would you report on something you can't back up? Seems like if you are going to attack Bill O'Reilly on not getting information correct that you would follow the same standards of being able to back it up.

Broad Road
Broad Road

Amy Sohnen, executive producer of the O'Reilly Factor, tells the Pulp that the length of the email was the only alteration made to the email.You need more proof?

BenFromCA
BenFromCA

Actually, it's very easy to explain.  The water displaced by the boat weighs more than the boat itself.  But then you would know that, if you were educated beyond a 6th grade science-level

Mo DeBrosse
Mo DeBrosse

How dense are you? Read the article next time instead of rage-scrolling down to the comment section with bloodshot eyes and foam spewing out of your mouth. Don't be a fucking moron.

Virgil Starkwell
Virgil Starkwell

Do you require any assistance cleaning that enormous omelette that is smeared all over your face?     

John Dale
John Dale

Can you not read Tquass?I guess that's a dumb question if you're an O'Reilly fan.

Matthew Hendley
Matthew Hendley

The original email is posted twice -- directly above the video, as well as at the end of the video itself. You realize you just pulled an O'Reilly on me, right?

Fred
Fred

Tquass, it's a very simple answer to your question. They did so because #1...this isn't a REAL news source, #2 who do you think their audience is, and # it's what this audience wants to hear..

S2pls2
S2pls2

what a bunch of crybaby name callers. What's the problem? I mean besides someone having a viewpoint that isn't extreme left...

Virgil Starkwell
Virgil Starkwell

Do you require any assistance cleaning that enormous omelette that is smeared all over your face?

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