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Writer's Block

Crime pays

Do you think that criminals should be able to profit from selling their memoirs, after serving jail time?

Answers (194)

  • It is legal to publish anything (up to a certain degree, as free speech has its limitations), so any person including a criminal can sell their memoirs. Of course, profits will be determined by the quantity of buyers. It would help if the criminal who has done his time showed good nature by helping both himself and the general public. For example, donating half the profits to a cause or have resolution on what he learned in his experiences.
  • Если мемуары будут интересны читателям, то да.
  • Да. Думаю, по истечению срока наказания недопустимо поражение человека в правах. Не самый плохой вид заработка, кстати сказать.

  • I am not in favor of censorship -- it is the justice issues that concern me.

    Victimless crimes I have no issues; go for it. 

    However, for violent offenders or white collar criminals who owe a debt to those that survived their offenses -- it seems fair that profits should be shared by those who were harmed.  I guess getting a ghost writer or being paid by a writer of true crime may insulate their wages somewhat, but that is one more way to try  to beat the system. 

    I just feel strongly that the victims should not be re-victimized and that while the criminal served time and paid a debt to society, in reality they did not pay a debt to their victim.  Civil judgments often work something out such that the perpetrator of the crime does not profit.   I get that they may need to earn a living and writing may be the answer, but without destroying someone else's life they would not have a story to tell. 

  • I don't really see why not. I mean, they've done their time, paid their dues to society so there's really no reason as to why they shouldn't be allowed. And I have to admit some of these types of memoirs are fascinating to read..

  • Это хорошо, если преступники хотят делиться своим опытом, и если хотят зарабатывать за счет этого - тоже хорошо, почему нет? Но если изначально задача состоит в том, чтобы разбогатеть, то вряд ли это хорошая идея. Не потому, что хотеть поживиться - это плохо, а потому, что читатель, как ни крути, чувствует лицемерие.

  • Yes

  • I think that anyone should be able to write a book and publish it (yes, even Stephanie Meyer for first degree grammatical and characterisation crimes against humanity and Dan Brown for just being evil). Criminals are people too, just stupid ones, but they need to make a living or else they will be back in jail living off tax-payers.  They just shouldn't be able to make too much of a living.

    The Proceeds of Crime Act (in Australia at least) ensures a cap on the amount people can earn and the revenue goes towards re-entry and other community projects for people coming out of prison.  All good causes.

    This has come up in the news today with David Hicks.  This guy didn't do anything wrong, but was just stupid, and was locked up in Guantanamo for years.  The courts suddenly decide to freeze the royalites of his memoirs. This is all perfectly legal under the Proceeds of Crime Act but still dubious in this particular case.  And the money was going to a family trust, not just him personally. His dad was Father of the Year: he's not going to let his son go crazy.

    Celebrity criminals are as old as ... something really really really old.  
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