Symbiotic Relationship of Celebrities and Tabloids
In the last decades, the concept of the privacy has changed dramatically especially while taking into consideration the relationship between mass media and celebrities. It seems that this concept has disappeared almost completely and every day people are bumped up with information about the private life of celebrities, their photos taken by paparazzi, financial and business scandals associated with them.
There appears an impression that general public knows everything about certain celebrities starting from the moment of their birth and up to the moment of their death. It should be pointed out that there are no hidden topics and even such private issues as intimate relations, dangerous addictions, health problems, crimes, financial wellbeing are in the focus of media attention. In this respect, there appears a question connected with the status of such celebrities. Are they victims of media who impertinently intervene in their private lives and violate the basic civil rights or probably celebrities motivate mass media to make their private lives a matter of public discourse?
While analyzing recent publications in scientific journal, newspapers and websites we came to the conclusion that tabloids and celebrities have symbiotic relationship and cooperate with each other receiving mutual benefits.The beginning of the 21st century was marked by a growing tendency of mass media tabloidization. The concept of tabloidization is a relatively new phenomenon in media discourse. It has several definitions but the most common one is “providing by the media more entertaining, more trivial and oversimplified content under the influence of growing commercialization” (Magin & Stark, 2014, p.577). It means that mass media, even serious and well-reputed ones, pay more attention to entertainments and reflecting personal lives of celebrities. Tabloidization also brought to light such issues as privacy and its invasion. So far there is no consensus among scholars whether tabloids violate privacy of celebrities. Still, the most common opinion is that tabloids and celebrities closely cooperate because this cooperation is beneficial for both sides of this process. According to Mortensen & Jerslev (2013) the relation between tabloids and celebrities are based on mutual advantage. Tabloids have their own audience consisting of people thirsty for scandals and details of other people’s lives. These people are ready to pay money and to get the information they want. It motivates tabloids to publish scandalous photos and other materials because this is a demand of public. As it is pointed out by experts “Coverage is driven by demand” (Lynch, 2014).
In this respect paparazzi photographers provide a demanded service. As the scholars point out “paparazzi photographers have accounted for their tacit or explicit collaborations with celebrities” (Mortensen & Jerslev, 2013, p. 629) Celebrities also receive benefits because the attention of tabloids increases their popularity and in broad context this attention is a sign that they are popular. Besides there are many celebrities including Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and many others who built their media career and support the interest to their personalities mainly by tabloid publications. By far this …