Just the Facts?

Celebrity culture is driving me crazy -- more specifically, the media’s treatment of celebs. Bear with me here as I appear to bite the blog that feeds me.

What is driving me crazy is how “facts” are repeated down the chain, with very little or no verification. I’ll give you an example. I read a copy of Metro today (a daily Toronto commuter paper) and came across a story about Lindsay Lohan dating Leonardo DiCaprio, according to Ananova.com, which was reporting a story in New! Magazine.

I also found out that a pregnant Gwyneth Paltrow may have eaten raw fish, reported by imdb.com, again picked up by Metro. Now I can admit to reading celeb gossip, but I hate seeing it passed along second and third hand in newspapers and magazines. I’m not picking on Metro, everyone does it.

Before I continue on my rant, I have to come clean. I have written pieces like the ones that I am complaining about, I’ve been paid for them and will likely do it again. I’m a hypocrite, but it doesn’t mean I like it.

So what’s my point? People want to read about the stars and they are going to be written about, but I’m tired of seeing the same things being repeated ad nauseum, especially all over the web. I saw today that Tom Cruise is putting off his wedding to Katie Holmes until the summer. I saw it over 200 times on Google News and I’m fairly certain there wasn’t a press conference.

Maybe if we stuck with original source reporting/gossiping it would help keep celebrity obsession in check, or at least improve the discourse a little. Mind you, I don't mind it when bloggers pass along this info

Which brings me to Gawker Stalker. The media/celebrity/gossip site has begun mapping readers celebrity sightings on a Google map of New York in real time. So there we have it, celebrity reporting straight from the mouths and eyes of fans. Of course it’s also more than a little bit obsessive.

George Clooney agrees and is trying to foil the site by flooding it with fake sightings.
"There is a simple way to render these guys useless. Flood their Web site with bogus sightings. Get your clients to get 10 friends to text in fake sightings of any number of stars. A couple hundred conflicting sightings and this Web site is worthless. No need to try to create new laws to restrict free speech. Just make them useless. That's the fun of it. And then sit back and enjoy the ride."
Oddly enough, Clooney is the most reasonable sounding one – and he is the one subjected to all the coverage. Bizarre. I suppose I just don’t understand the interest in celebrities, but I’ll keep trying.


  1. Is the ruin of the world by People Magazine and US Weekly.

    --RC of strangeculture.blogspot.com

  2. Did this post make any sense? I really need to stop writing so late at night. I think that media companies need to be held to a higher standard, especially as they are using this material to sell ads. But enough of my ranting.