'The Whole Pantry' App Developer Admits Faking Cancer to Boost Sales

After facing a wave of controversy in March over reports of false claims made towards her cancer diagnosis, Australian indie developer Belle Gibson this week spoke out, admitting that "none of it's true" in regards to her ever having cancer (via News.com.au).

Last month, when $300,000 of her app sales failed to find its promised home at certain charities, the legitimacy of her cancer claims began to be questioned. Gibson is the founder of The Whole Pantry, a healthy lifestyle and diet app that focuses on naturally-occurring ingredients and solutions to complicated recipes.

bellegibson
Gibson claimed that her app, which launched in 2013 on iOS, was the culmination of a lifestyle and choices that helped her personally overcome terminal brain cancer, a statement she's now claiming to be completely false when talking to The Australian Women's Weekly earlier this week.
“No. None of it’s true,” she confessed. “I am still jumping between what I think I know and what is reality. I have lived it and I’m not really there yet."

“In the last two years I have worked every single day living and raising up an online community of people who supported each other ... I understand the confusion and the suspicion, but I also know that people need to draw a line in the sand where they still treat someone with some level of respect or humility — and I have not been receiving that.”
Amid the firestorm against her, Penguin Australia has stopped selling her book and Gibson has faced monetary troubles as numerous accountants have instructed her to provide any leftover funds from The Whole Pantry's sales to the charities she initially pledged money to.

The Whole Pantry Apple Watch
The Whole Pantry Apple Watch app before it was removed by Apple.

The Australian Women's Weekly suggests that Gibson may suffer from Factitious Disorder, whose sufferers feign illnesses and disease to gain a wider audience and recognition. Despite the whole ordeal causing her to shut down The Whole Pantry's Facebook page and even her own personal Instagram account, Gibson hopes her honesty on the matter helps her grow from the situation.
"I just think [speaking out] was the responsible thing to do. Above anything, I would like people to say, ‘Okay, she’s human. She’s obviously had a big life. She’s respectfully come to the table and said what she’s needed to say, and now it’s time for her to grow and heal.’”
Apple began promoting Gibson's app The Whole Pantry as a featured spot on its Apple Watch app page, going so far as to fly Gibson out to Cupertino to assist her in being one of the first-wave launch apps for the Watch. The company ended up pulling the app from its App Store, and stopped promoting the Apple Watch version, when the fraud allegations began in March.

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51 months ago
This is sick
Rating: 31 Votes
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51 months ago
" Gibson may suffer from Factitious Disorder, whose sufferers feign illnesses and disease to gain a wider audience and recognition."

come on now.
Rating: 27 Votes
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51 months ago

Have you got a slow news day, this story broke more than a month ago?

http://www.flamingopink.com.au/2015/03/belle-gibson-whole-pantry-cancer-scam/


I prefer to read about her finally admitting she was faking it than read another apple watch post tbh.
Rating: 17 Votes
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51 months ago

" Gibson may suffer from Factitious Disorder, whose sufferers feign illnesses and disease to gain a wider audience and recognition."

come on now.


Had the same thought. There's apparently some medical reason you can fall back on to explain anything you don't want to take personal responsibility for. Maybe I'm wrong, but I always thought people were more honourable when I was a kid.
Rating: 13 Votes
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51 months ago
Okay, she has mental issues and lied... Profiting from false claims, is that a crime in AU?

Where's the money that was supposed to be donated? Isn't that a crime?

Does anyone know what % was supposed to be donated?

I can't believe her smug, "can't we all just get along" attitude
Rating: 10 Votes
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51 months ago
What she has done is mass fraud. I Think she needs to go to jail.
Rating: 10 Votes
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51 months ago
I don't think she's going to get the kind treatment that she's naively hoping for.

She's basically said something like "I think all the people I stole from will understand me, and will want to give me a cuddle".

If only that was the way the world worked...
Rating: 7 Votes
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51 months ago

"Gibson may suffer from Factitious Disorder"

Shouldn't that be Fictitious Disorder?


Get your Ficts right!
Rating: 5 Votes
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51 months ago
Just some info...

Factitious Disorders (http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases_conditions/hic_An_Overview_of_Factitious_Disorders)

Factitious Disorder is a mental disorder in which a person acts as if he or she has a physical or mental illness when, in fact, he or she has consciously created their symptoms. The name factitious comes from the Latin word for "artificial."

People with Factitious Disorder deliberately create or exaggerate symptoms of an illness in several ways. They may lie about or mimic symptoms, hurt themselves to bring on symptoms, or alter diagnostic tests (such as contaminating a urine sample).Those with Factitious Disorders have an inner need to be seen as ill or injured, but not to achieve a concrete benefit, such as a financial gain. Individuals with Factitious Disorder are even willing to undergo painful or risky tests and operations in order to obtain the sympathy and special attention given to people who are truly ill. Factitious Disorder is considered a mental illness because it is associated with severe emotional difficulties.


It would seem the bolded part above could potentially disqualify her from meeting criteria for this diagnosis. We truly don't have enough information at this point to make a valid decision. Has she been undergoing cancer treatment and manufacturinging symptoms? If so, for how long and what is the timeline between her onset and treatment in relation to her business and app development?

One of two things is true, she's either really mentally ill and her mental struggles pushed her in the direction of business and app creation or selfishness and greed pushed her in the direction of using falsehood for her personal and financial gain.
Rating: 5 Votes
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51 months ago
Why is it when white people commit a crime, it's considered a mental illness?
Rating: 5 Votes
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