By the Hoary Hand of Hoggoth.....
Posted On:11/06/2007 9:15am
Style: JKD & Mok'bara
No need to apologise!
It is a sticky area and one that does actually bother me from time to time. I am pretty sure that everyone on these boards - myself included - have had occasiona when they have not been 100% accurate with the retelling of a tale. The details are sometimes more graphic, the witicisms more biting, the woman more attractive etc...
It is a fine line between embellishing the details and outright deceit.
Does anyone really think that a Gucci bag is $400 better made than a $20 bag from Walmart? No, but the marketing machine and hype make it seem more desirable.
Matt Furey is another good example. There is nothing fundementally wrong with some of his earlier stuff (his later stuff is another matter) but his hyperbole and inflated prices put a lot of people off. Is he a fraud? No. He claims to have won wrestling championships (he has), a san shou tournament (he has) and to have worked/trained with Karl Gotch (he has).
The length and validity of some claims are challenged, but they are indeed legitimate as far as they go. Challenges against someone like Furey are more to do with the fact he irritates the **** our of people with overpriced goods
You don't have to buy them though!
Even McDojo's are not always bullshido as such. If they are stressing "fun, family and friends" then more power to them. Just don't claim you are an invincible-street-lethal-shaolin-ninja-death-machine when you are offering the classes. That is what gets peoples backs up on here.
Similarly are the claims of "too lethal" that many stylists put forward. there is a thread on teh go at teh minute where a poster is claiming he is a FIGHTER who has SKILLS that can defeat "x" technique by just doing "y" - as if combat was a matter of just joining dots. This is bullshido...a young lad with no demonstrable real world experience offering fighting tips.
Now he is not a fraud - he may genuinely believe in his abilities - but he is clearly talking nonsense. That is why bullshido, to me, is as much about standards in ability as much as anything else.
Posted On:11/06/2007 9:30am
Originally Posted by GoldenJonas
Sam is correct. However, you need to be specific as to what context you are using the word "fraud". People tend to throw the "fraud" word around where someone is simply lying.
The legal, simplified, definition of "Fraud" is:
Someone who uses inflated credentials or false, made up, fight records or history to induce a consumer to pay that person for instruction is a "Fraud". Absent the person receiving something from a consumer who was acting in reliance upon the persons misrepresentations of truth, all you have is a lying dirtbag, NOT a fraud.
Further, the consumer, or person acting in reliance, simply has to do some act or give up some legal right due to the person's misrepresentations; it does not have to be monetary to qualify as "Fraud".
Just when it was all starting to coalecse in my mind.
Posted On:11/06/2007 10:29am
Part of the problem is confusing fraud and misrepresentation. But even with respect to misrepresentation there is a lot of inflation regarding a claim that can be acceptable. Real Estate is a good example. Can a broker say he is the best Broker in the world? Well it would probably be assumed people knew he was advertising and that his words would not lead to a material act by another party that would cost them something of value.
The problem is it is obvious in a lot of areas when somoene is inflating a claim to advertise. "The best burger in the world" is not a material fact that will cause me to lose something of value..... However saying my "best burger in the world is half a pound and giving you a quarter pounder:toothy9:is a misrepresentation.
With martial arts there is often no standard of proof that will establish whether something is a fact, or simply advertising. If I say I will make you the best fighter in the world.... the judge would probably be a lot more interested in how you plan to establish a burden of proof Haha than my claim.
One reason I like this site is because ultimately, because martial arts claims are hard to categorize with respect to misrepresentation (easier with respect to fraud) the best weapon is a knowlagable consumer. While nobody would take seriously a claim that I am the best broker in the world, or that I can make a burger that is the best in the world, people lose common sense and might assume that somoene can make you one of the world's fighting elite.
If people are taught to look at statements like "I am one of the world's best fighters vis a vis "I am a world champion" the same way they would when they buy any other good or service they would realize that they need the same due dillagence to establish who they want to study with. ... Nobody I know of selects a broker or appraiser because they claim they are the best in the world. And nobody I know would assume that Mama's place makes the best burger in the world. Yet I have had many students come to my small group and ask about fantastic things they think are involved with martial arts. Things like one guy telling me about a martial artist fighting a mob of people (this guy was in graduate school BTW).
So in conclusion the ignorance of the consumer goes a long way in establishing some standard of misrepresentation when a claim is made.
Posted On:11/06/2007 10:53am
Originally Posted by Dsimon3387
However saying my "best burger in the world is half a pound and giving you a quarter pounder:toothy9:is a misrepresentation.
* pre-cooked weight
Posted On:11/07/2007 10:49am
Style: Ryukyu Kempo-Toudi Jutsu
Here's a standpoint comming from an Auditor:
Fraud as it relates to martial arts is the action, advertising, or claims made with the INTENT to mislead potential/current clients (aka students) for personal gain.
Fraud has a higher rate of occurance when 3 elements are present:
Incentive/Pressure - being able to make money easily by deceiving others is an incentive to perform fraud. Also, external pressures such as high personal debt or loss of the primary financial source would also cause concern for possible fraudulent acts.
Opportunity - Does the person have the resources to perform the fraudulent act. Ability to forge documents, create fake lineage charts, association with organizations that grant status for a fee, etc.
Rationalization/Attitude - This relates to the justification of commiting a fraudulent act. It could be that the person is a self centered dick and doesnt care who he/she deceives. It could also relate to a denial in rank from the former organization whereby the practitioner believes he/she should have received the rank, starts a new organization, and awards themselves the rank they feel they deserved.
Basically it comes down to the intent to deceive to make money off of the general public who, as a whole, are completely ignorant with regards to the martial arts.
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