FlippED is one of ED’s exclusive content styles wherein two bloggers come together to share two different points of view about one common topic. A battle of wits and sarcasm, we see the two sides to one coin.
Don’t you enjoy Celebrity Gossip? Ah, what if there were no more paparazzi on earth? *sigh* While the gossip culture is in no mood to die out, two of our bloggers debate on the value of celebrity gossip in the modern consumerist culture. Is it healthy at all?
Read on to find out…
“Celebrity Gossip Is My Guilty Pleasure…” – Blogger Brinda Sen
I will be a blatant hypocrite here; as much as I hate people discussing other people, I ridiculously enjoy reading tabloids and discussing celebrity gossip. Who went where, how, wearing what, dating whom, is my daily dose of easy amusement.
Should I court marshal myself for that?
No. I think I will sound like a total loser if I say that I am ‘entitled’ as a ‘consumer’ of culture to know about the interesting insider’s scoop on celeb life, since they are famous because they market themselves for our viewership. But I will claim that I do nothing wrong by voluntarily queuing up for the next Flimfare or People edition.
Why? Isn’t it petty? Shouldn’t public figures be entitled to have some space to breathe and not be scrutinized every second moment?
Look, human nature to gossip is a well documented quintessential fact. We get a lot of information from petty second hand resources, rumors. As much as most of it is fallacious, it is an interesting insight to the way people behave. What attracts us to celebrity gossip is that they are famous, i.e. they are high-functioning individual who have made the cut.
We all want to make that cut too. Barring the theory of imitation, the natural explanation to our unnatural interests is simply that we want to feel closer to ‘them’ through the knowledge that they are nobody unlike us.
They are just as human. Human nature is interested to hear just about any kind of scandal, because it often makes them feel better about their own miserable lives. On the reverse, good news about people we like, aka celebrity favorites, definitely makes us happier.
We connect to celebrities like we do with people around us; hence we take such a personal interest. It is not always about laughing at the dirty laundry.
It is about the catharsis.
There is only so much celebrity gossip that is healthy and they have every right to have an intimate personal life. If Priyanka Chopra doesn’t want to tell me who her boyfriend is, I don’t want to know. But if Brangelina is going to announce their divorce, I am going to talk about it.
I am not an advocate of paparazzi culture, so yeah, I don’t read TMZ.
I am not trying to justify my gossip mongering habits by justifying it through pseudo-intellectual talk. Rather, I am appealing to your conscience to understand this: everyone has done it since forever, and it’s okay!
“Celebrity Gossip Is Just Not My Thing!” -Blogger Rahul Dua
I need to be honest, celebrity gossip is just not my thing. I believe people should be free to indulge in whatever it is that makes them feel good, as long as it not harming or causing problems to others. So if they choose to read up on the latest issue of Star, Ok, or Us Weekly then so be it. But I suppose I just don’t see rationale behind the constant attention that mainstream media seems to be giving it nowadays.
I don’t really see how it is any of my business to know what Kim Kardashian is up to this weekend. Or who Taylor Swift is dating now. Or why Angelina and Brad decided to call it quits. I don’t think we are entitled to know what goes on behind cameras and in their personal lives. Celebrities, just like the rest of us, have jobs. Jobs that they often do very well. Why we reward them for a job well done with constant pestering and opinionated judgement is beyond me.
My biggest dissension with the recent trend of heightened celebrity gossip, however, is the abrasive paparazzi culture and ethics governing tabloid reporting. There have been countless incidents involving brazen photojournalists and celebrities where the blame is almost always unanimously put forth upon on the latter.
In an industry so volatile where fake news and false rumors possess the power for ruining careers, why we don’t demand higher standards of reporting bewilders me. Where does it stop being “fair game” and start becoming invasion of privacy and harassment?
And lately it seems that even the children of celebrities are not off the books. The incident involving pregnant Halle Berry comes to mind where a mob of paparazzi forced her to hit a wall, putting both of their lives in jeopardy.
I commend and fully support the actions of celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Garner, and Halle Berry, among countless others, that are adamant about pushing for an anti-paparazzi law that strictly prohibits the photographing of a child without the explicit permission from a legal guardian. According to a number of distinguished child psychologists, the psychological effects caused by constantly being in the public’s eye can have a very long lasting detrimental effect on a child’s personality development.
I just feel that the constant stress endured by celebrities, caused by out of control paparazzi, cannot be good for them or their family’s emotional wellbeing and perhaps we need to have a discerning discussion about the ethics concerning photojournalism.
I think it would still be possible to conduct civil interviews and get the latest scoop without getting invasive and insolent. Don’t you?