Two years ago, Joanie Faircloth accused musician Conor Oberst of rape in the comments of an xoJane story. She later recanted the accusations, calling them “100 percent false,” but Oberst nonetheless spent months under an internet microscope of sorts—and spoke out about it on Monday. “It was very painful,” he told Marc Maron on a Feb. 16 episode of the WTF Podcast. “It was like the world was upside down for a little bit.”
“It taught me a lot about, I’ve always sort of hated the kind of depravity of our current culture, and the way that people, there’s zero journalistic standards to anything,” he said. “It’s basically a game of telephone.”
He eventually filed a libel lawsuit against Faircloth, one that he dropped after she recanted her original statements—and now, he’s trying to put the whole thing behind him. “There’s still echoes in my mind, for sure,” he said, “but I want to put it in perspective because I think about all the many African-American men who are in prisons right now for crimes they didn’t commit, and for actual victims of sexual assault, who this has done the greatest disservice to.”
Listen to the entire interview, which also includes Oberst’s discussion of the inspiration behind certain tracks and his thoughts on religion, here.