It is rare for a website to be both a hilarious tool of unintentional self-mockery and a legally useful aid, but David Tang’s new iCorrect.com, where celebrities and HNWs can challenge rumours about them in the press, is just that
by Josh Spero
It is rare for a website to be both a hilarious tool of unintentional self-mockery and a legally useful aid, but David Tang’s new iCorrect.com, where celebrities and HNWs can challenge rumours about them in the press, is just that.
On the left, in a shade of red which implies danger, is the accusation, and in a happy, healthy green on the right is the rebuttal: Richard Caring’s tan is not fake (not fake, you hear), nor is he a rude guest; Tracey Emin is not leaving the country (a pity, some cry); and Cherie Blair says she did not wear the same dress as Hayden Panettiere. (You’d think Cherie would rebut the accusation that her husband is a war criminal, but she leaves that unchallenged.)
One might reach the conclusion that these celebrities are thin-skinned and have not learned that sticks and stones are the things to be feared. Kate Moss and Dasha Zhukova tell us they’ve never used Twitter, and Tommy Hilfiger categorically does not hate black people. The website sensibly links to the inaccurate allegation, but this does rather have the counterproductive effect of driving more traffic exactly to the thing which they want ignored.
Some people make it worse. Jemima Khan rebuts this rumour: ‘Jemima Goldsmith changed her first name to the Muslim name Haiqa when she got married.’ She may not have heard of the frying pan and fire principle, however: ‘I never changed my first name and if I had, it would not have been for a name, which when said out loud, sounds like you're clearing your throat of phlegm. That's not to say that there aren't lots of lovely Muslim girls names…’
And some celebrities are just po-facedly correcting cherished urban legends: Michael Caine feels the need to say that he never said, ‘Not many people know that,’ while Bianca Jagger debunks the story that she rode a horse into Studio 54: ‘I love horses and I used to have a white horse in Nicaragua, however, I would certainly not have ridden a horse into a nightclub. Once, as a surprise for my 27th birthday (in 1977), a horse was brought into Studio 54 in New York. I briefly mounted the horse, dressed in a full length red Halston dress.’ Never let an enjoyable, harmless rumour get in the way of a dull truth, eh?
You can take the desire of celebrities to use iCorrect in several ways: a chance to push a line of PR; a cry of rage after years of misrepresentation; an assertion of fact. Several people hit out at Wikipedia, seemingly not realising you can edit it yourself. Whichever way you see it, iCorrect allows the bubble of celebrity to reinflate itself, despite all the pricks.