By: Jessika Davidson
Has TMZ taken it too far? Are celebrities not allowed privacy anymore?
It’s the news that’s currently shocking the world. TMZ leaked security camera footage of Beyonce’s little sister/singer Solange attacking Jay-Z following the MET Gala last week. The fight has been the subject of numerous comical trending topics and Instagram memes and it’s not likely the buzz will cease anytime soon. Although this story has all the elements for great gossip, my question is this: Are celebrities allowed private moments anymore?
The answer is No. But it’s not that simple.
Personally, I’ve never been into peeking into a celebrity’s family issues, but this is Jay-Z and Beyonce. I admit that as a couple known for keeping their family matters within their family, having something this personal and messy leak is what caught my attention. I spent a few hours going through several webpages, laughing at some comments and rolling my eyes at others. I wondered what Jay-Z did or said to make Solange react like that. Most of all – I wanted to know more. I waited for TMZ to find audio so I can hear the actual conversation. It’s ridiculous that I, like so many others, have devoted so much time to something that has absolutely nothing to do with me.
And we all know TMZ’s reputation – generally lacking all moral values to release the hottest story of the day, and arguably one of the hottest of the year so far. They are responsible for breaking some of the largest celebrity news stories of the decade. Remember when they sent the internet into a frenzy announcing the death of Michael Jackson in 2009?
They along with other news sources have gone out of their way to find a story. From paparazzi jumping fences into the backyards of Hollywood’s A-list to taping celebrities’ children, they are just waiting to find something that will spike interest.
Do you think celebrities sign their rights to privacy away when they sign up for fame? Why do you think we are so obsessed with what our favorite singer/actor/athlete is doing at the moment? I would argue it is because we want to relate to them, we want them to be more “normal”. Or in some cases, we want to feel in on the fame. How else would we gain access to events and parties if our favorite celebrities didn’t share a 15 second video of it on their social networking page? In this internet-ruled social world, we need to know in real time what everyone is doing, especially celebrities – that’s why people repeatedly check their Facebook pages and Twitters for a status that will entertain us in some way throughout the day.
Even if we argue that they should stop invading celebrities’ most personal moments – we wouldn’t be satisfied. We want something everyone can gossip about. The media has even created a whole television genre (Reality TV) based on invading people’s personal moments. Think about the highest rated shows on cable networks – Love and Hip Hop, Mob Wives,Real World -the list goes on.
There is no doubt that while this Solange/Jay-Z scuffle will cause a stir – even if the two have settled their differences by now, everyone wants answers. And soon, another “hot” news story will break (likely coming from TMZ). Does anyone still care about the Donald Sterling fiasco now or is that old news? What about Mimi’s sex tape? Can you predict the trending topic or top celebrity story next week? Not at all. Private moments that have the power to ruin a celebrity’s life and hurt others close to them are nothing but a limited source of entertainment to the masses. But because we all liked to be entertained – we’ll be waiting and expecting someone to deliver.
Jessika Davidson is a multimedia professional and a Student Life Program Coordinator at UTMB
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.