JREF calls out Priceline to push new psychic spokesperson to take the Million Dollar Challenge

D.J. Grothe: Priceline.com: Will You Prove Your Spokesperson Worthy for a Million Dollars?.

D.J. Grothe, President of the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) publishes an open letter to the travel booking website Priceline.com to encourage their new spokesperson, Long Island medium, Theresa Caputo, to accept the JREF Million Dollar Challenge.

Below are some excerpts from that open letter.

Dear Mr. Boyd,

On behalf of the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) and the countless Americans who have been exploited by fake psychics and mediums, I am writing to address your recently debuted commercial campaign featuring “medium” Theresa Caputo, performing her usual gimmick of claiming to communicate with dead people, and to make you an offer of one million dollars if she can prove her talents are real.

I respectfully invite you to have your new representative, Ms. Caputo, apply for the James Randi Educational Foundation’s Million Dollar Challenge. Since 1996, the JREF has offered a prize of $1 million to anyone who can demonstrate a paranormal ability under mutually agreed-upon scientific conditions and without cheating.

If Ms. Caputo can do what she claims to do, she ought to be thrilled to have the opportunity to prove to the world that her talents are real, and to give the prize money to a worthy cause (or to keep the million dollars for herself). If she is unwilling to take the challenge, I suspect her talents may be as manipulative as her motivations are selfish.

Please consider salvaging priceline.com’s good name by putting your new spokesperson to the test. After all, you wouldn’t hire a doctor to represent your company without asking for her credentials, would you? Let’s make certain that this medium’s astounding claims are legitimate, as opposed to greedy manipulations of those who are mourning.


The JREF has had this Million Dollar Challenge for years and there’s no shortage of people trying out for it. But they’re mostly unknowns. But the big names, such as Caputo, John Edward, and James van Praagh are mysteriously shy when it comes to proving their abilities in a sound test.

Theresa Caputo won this year’s Pigasus award given out by the JREF for most popular psychic performer.

If they don’t need the money, why not do it to legitimize their profession? To shut up the naysayers? Nope. It’s too risky. And I’ll bet Ms. Caputo won’t compromise her current situation either.

  5 comments for “JREF calls out Priceline to push new psychic spokesperson to take the Million Dollar Challenge

  1. Massachusetts
    August 13, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    It’s a strange ad. they are sort of mocking her, with the guy asking if the spirit is “in the refrigerator” and such. I suspect they will just say it’s all in good fun and they aren’t advocating anything.

  2. marky
    August 13, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    That’s true, but they’re still capitolizing on her supposed abilities for their marketing strategy. Priceline could care less if she’s legit or not.

  3. Verklagekasper
    August 14, 2012 at 6:25 AM

    Psychics don’t need to take the million dollar challenge because they are already rich from winning all those lotteries. 😉
    Not. We’re still waiting for the headline “Psychic Wins Lottery”, as well as for a psychic solving a single criminal case. They are rich, but from lying, cheating, and exploiting mourners. A have a hundred times more respect for any self-delusional dowser than for these greedy scavengers.

  4. Fred
    August 14, 2012 at 7:04 AM

    I put most internet travel sites in the same category as psychics, frankly. They are alike in preying on the gullible. People too often believe what they want to be true–“I’m saving x% on my 4 star hotel,” for instance–despite evidence to the contrary. I’m amazed management approved the idea.

  5. Rachel
    August 18, 2012 at 8:43 PM

    As a diehard skeptic, I’m actually annoyed that JREF is putting this much effort into nitpicking a company’s commercial. They never in the ads claim she is a real psychic, rather they bank on the audience having seen at least an ad for her show. I think it’s just kinda a waste of Grothe’s time, and it feels like a cheap publicity stunt for JREF. I dunno, maybe they should focus on more important things like getting hits for raising money for science-based education/camps for kids instead of whining about every TV psychic that comes around.

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