The Daily Mail has apologised and agreed to pay £125,000 in libel damages to a TV psychic it falsely accused of using a hidden earpiece to scam a theatre audience.
Sally Morgan, who has appeared on TV and on stage under the name “Psychic Sally”, complained that the article in September 2011 meant she had “deliberately and dishonestly” tricked her audience in Dublin.
The article, by the magician Paul Zenon, claimed that Morgan had used a hidden earpiece during her performance in order to receive instructions and relay them on stage as if they were messages from the spiritual world.
Her lawyer told the court that the article was “in the context of a general attack on psychics as being charlatans”. Here are some details on the performance that was questioned.
Here’s the thing. WE KNOW some psychics are charlatans. They have been caught cheating people charged with fraud. We DON’T KNOW that psychic powers are real even after all this time. People like Sally refuse to take tests to show that their abilities withstand scrutiny. However, stage psychics don’t even need to cheat with earpieces to pull off a convincing show to a believing audience. There was not enough evidence in this case to show that the earpiece was actually used and the Daily Mail settled the case before heading to trial where they could have lost considerably more.
It’s not as disturbing that the Daily Mail (a quite despicable source for news) was sued for libel. This is a disappointing result that did something worse – made a declaration that psychics are not charlatans. This was about Sally being a charlatan, not all psychics. So that resolution is indeed false.
It’s the 21st century. We can detect subatomic particles yet we can’t detect psychic powers? What the hell is a thinking person supposed to conclude?