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Speaking Frankly

The Sinatras squabble online

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These bits are made for talking — talking back, that is. When The Wall Street Journal ran a page-one story alleging Sinatra-family infighting over 81-year-Ol’ Blue Eyes’ estimated $200 million fortune, eldest daughter Nancy used her website (http://www.sinatrafamily.com) to strike back: ”There is no battle in our family! Period,” she wrote. Still, the reported controversy over the ”licensing barrage,” led by daughter Tina — who, apparently against wife Barbara’s wishes, seeks to put the crooner’s name on restaurants, cigars, and champagne bottles — prompted Nancy to scold the Journal for its ”tabloid style.”

”These are all grim fairy tales,” she writes. ”Don’t buy any form of virtual-reality news.” And while the fan-fueled Frank Sinatra Internet mailing list exploded with commentary over the incident, Barbara’s own website (http://www.sinatracenter.com) simply chose to remain silent. Perhaps in the digital age, a site is worth 1,000 words.