I’m sure being a celebrity has its ups and downs. But personally, I could think of nothing worse. A common perception is that celebrities have it all, they can do what they want, they get what they want and lets not even mention special treatment.
However, is the grass really greener on the other side?
Celebrities can’t do the things we “normal people” can, they can’t run down to the shops, they certainly cannot go to the local park on a nice summers day or hit up the local pub for some pre-weekend drinks. As they’re at major risk of being spotted.
Being a celebrity sets one up for constant judgement and scrutiny. I’m sure we all remember Britney’s break down circa 2007 – tabloids, magazines, newspapers and blogs were constantly judging and scrutinising. However, its not only Britney being judged, all celebrities are being examined on their where about, their actions, fashion and bodies – whether they’ve gain or lost a few pounds – ridiculous! Imagine how hard this would be, picking up a magazine and reading about how fat you are, or that lately you’ve been looking skeletal.
Taking it back to Brittney – a solid 9 years later (2016) people are still referencing her breakdown. Yet, we only know about this because she’s a celebrity. It has all been documented. A Time line of Brittney’s Break Down has been published allowing readers to keep track of her misfortune. Loosely speaking, we as consumers all experienced this. The example with Britney, we are detached and miles away from the situation, yet instantly, able to keep up.
Surveillance, specifically celebrity surveillance is incredibly similar to the constant surveillance we are subject to each and every day – however, they are celebrities and we are not, instantly making us irrelevant and uninteresting. Surveillance can be displayed in many different ways. Berkeley University “created a map where ones movement over a 30 day period can be tracker by the metadata encoded in their Tweets and Instagram posts” (NewsComAu, 2013). “On August 23 (2013) at 4:21pm, Katy Perry was in rural northeast Colorado, at the intersection of Highways 46 and 55. And on August 5 (2013) at 3:56pm, Oprah Winfrey was cruising down the Kennedy Expressway in Chicago. How do we know this? It’s not hard to check out stars Twitter and Instagram feeds, yet more often than not, stars also do not give away their location, however an app called “ready or not” developed by Berkeley University enabled us to track celebrities, easily and effortlessly. Moreover, as we know celebrities endur plenty of scrutiny and hence a campaign titled “Stop Watching Us” has been introduced. This entails, “major Hollywood celebrities appearing in a video in order to express their objections to the widespread surveillance program” (Hirsen, J 2013) lead and administered by the National Security Agency.
Khloe Kardashian, Kylie and Kendal Jenner have documented themselves taking extreme measure to “feel normal” for a day, to go unnoticed. They explain how one paparazzi can turn into 50 and have the ability to ruins ones day. Khloe, Kylie and Kendall chose to put on prosthetic makeup and hit the town incognito. This worked, until paparazzi tracked them down through the use of Snapchat.
files_wordpress_kardashian_family_w By Derek McGill
Continuing on the topic of the “Kartrashians” is some surveillance good surveillance? The recent case of Lamar Odom’s overdose in a Las Vegas Brothel, was all captured through CCTV surveillance. Yes, he was captured popping pills and yes there happened to be nude women all around him – however, if not for this CCTV camera surveillance, Odom would not have been found unconscious and may not be alive today.
Lines on Cocaine By, Acid Pix
(CC BY 2.0)
Have you heard of the saying “all publicity is good publicity”? well… i have defiantly provided some examples where this is certainly a negative. However some celebrities choose to take this opportunity and turn it into something good. John Legend – chose to promote ‘The Show Me’ campaign aiming to break the poverty cycle. Dwayne Johnson promoting the Rock Foundation, a campaign designed to enrich and empower at risk youths and children hospitalised for disability or illness. Alicia Keys – ‘keep a child alive’ aiming to get life saving medical treatment to children living with HIV in Africa. Therefore, i my opinion, not all publicity is good publicity – its up to the individual and how they choose to use it.
Hirsen, J 2013, Celebs Tell Govt to ‘Stop Watching Us’. Newsman
NewsComAu. (2013). You’re under surveillance almost every minute of the day. http://www.news.com.au/technology/online/youre-under-surveillance-almost-every-minute-of-the-day/story-fnjwnfzw-1226746672303