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Aretha Franklin is planning on suing the News Nerd, a satire site that ran a story about her getting into a brawl with fellow legend Patti LaBelle. The Queen of Soul and her lawyers aren’t happy and will sue for $10 million in damages.
The News Nerd’s “story” claimed that Franklin and LaBelle had a brawl on March 20 during an Atlanta concert. This apparently started because the Queen of Soul wasn’t happy with how LaBelle treated her at the In Performance at the White House: Women of Soul event.
Franklin’s publicist, Gwendolyn Quinn sent a statement to TheCelebrityCafe.com on the singer’s behalf, saying that the alleged fight never happened at that she was in New York on March 20. “Patti and I are cool and we always have been. I enjoyed her at the White House,” Franklin said.
However, Franklin believes that the story is still damaging. Quinn told The Detroit News that the News Nerd item was “not presented as satire or humor.” She continued, “It was presented as a serious news story intended to depict me in a slanderous and derogatory way — defamation of character.”
The News Nerd story was first published on April 11 and appears to have since been edited. At the bottom of every page on the site, there is a disclaimer that reads, “he stories posted on TheNewsNerd are for entertainment purposes only. The stories may mimic articles found in the headlines, but rest assured they are purely satirical.”
The site also currently features stories with headlines like "Kanye West to Use Jesus Christ Hologram as Opening Act" and "Rick Ross Signs With Dairy Queen, Announces Maybach Music Themed Blizzard."