About Me

Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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Breaking The Girl
Friday, February 01, 2008

Has anyone even remotely interested in the entertainment world been able to log on in the morning without seeing a story about Britney Spears? I think we’ve finally reached the point of not just over saturation when it comes to celebrity sleaze, but dangerous over saturation. Britney is a prime example of this as it’s looking more and more like her media coverage is eventually going to kill her and I don’t just mean career-wise.

The internet has become a wonderful tool for getting instantaneous information, but how much of that information do we really need, especially when it comes to celebrities? I know, a lot of you who know me are probably saying, “but Adam, you openly talk about how much you love Perez Hilton. What gives?” Well, I’ll tell you. There’s a huge difference between reporting gossip and creating it. What Perez does is post up and report what’s already happened. He doesn’t send out paparazzi minions to invade someone’s privacy. Celebrities actually like Perez which is why the problem isn’t the Perez Hiltons of the world, it isn’t even the paparazzi, they’re just doing their job, albeit a really sleazy one. The problem lies with the people who pay the paparazzi and the celebrities who call on them. Could you imagine if either ever got the balls to say “stop?”

Unfortunately, thanks to the internet being a paparazzi has suddenly become a much realer occupation. Now every gossip site wants the first pictures of X doing Y. I’m not sure how many people really care to see a pop princess exiting a gas station bathroom, or picking up her dry cleaning, but they follow and they take pictures. Sometimes (probably more often than they’d like to admit) the celeb in question calls the paps themselves. The sick thing is the spillover effect it’s having on society as a whole.

Late in December a video surfaced of High School Musical stars Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale attempting to get food at a drive through window. I say attempting because their car was so swarmed by cameramen that they couldn’t move. As if that wasn’t bad enough the video then showed the fast food employee smiling and asking “am I gonna be on TMZ?” Is this what we really want as a society? We all know what TMZ does. Heck, before they launched the site I even sent them my resume thinking they’d be more like a real celebrity news site, but instead the culture they, and sites of their ilk (I know, TMZ is looking like a scapegoat here and I don’t want everyone to think they’re the only ones), have helped to create is one of too much information and it’s become both creepily stalker-ish (seriously, who needs to see two teenage girls picking up fast food?) and fairly scary (just let them eat!).

One of my favorite shows on television is Dirt, which is a fictional show about tabloid journalism. Sadly, I’m starting to long for the good old days of stars being upset they landed in The Enquirer or Star. Those were occasional stories that were made to look huge because they had headlines that worked well with the pictures. “So and so is dating what’s his name… we have the pictures!” Salacious? Yes. Invasion of privacy? Probably. But we’re talking about weekly magazines we’d see while on line at the grocery store, not the minute by minute blow by blow rundowns we see while online everyday.

Now we have the news that Britney Spears, after years of using the paparazzi in her favor to keep her name in the news, has reportedly had a very real mental breakdown because of it all. She is of the first generation of the “all seeing internet” celebrity age and the results aren’t pretty. Of course she could have laid low, been out less and kept to herself more, but would that really have prevented all this? In Britney we had arguably the biggest pop star on the planet. Now she’s become a blueprint for how badly the new media coverage can affect a person. Sure, some people are stronger and find ways to keep more private, but each and every celeb needs to look to this situation and realize what not to do. By the same token the TMZs, paparazzi and big wigs who pay the paps need to back off. Everyone is entitled to make a buck in this world, but if you don’t control yourself now and someone eventually dies from your “work” you can be sure you’ll be shut down entirely. Laws are funny like that, when enough people feel you’re responsible for someone’s death they make sure it doesn’t happen again.

In the meantime I’m going to attempt to stay as old school as I can while still surviving in these shark infested waters because I’d much rather be like a Johnny Carson, who had an amazing career and was widely respected and loved for his work in entertainment, than be some kind of sleaze monger. Remember when celebrity news consisted of in-depth magazine interviews, a few pictures taken at events, appearances on late night talk shows and Entertainment Tonight and the occasional salacious tabloid story? One has to wonder what Britney Spears’ mental health, along with her relationship with her kids, would be if that were still the case.


posted by Adam Bernard @ 7:53 AM  
  • At 9:24 AM, Blogger Tah's Chronicles said…

    Great perspective on a scaaaaary situation. Keep it coming fam. I hope they don't drive this chick to the noose.

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