Thursday, April 10, 2008

Paris and Nicole Frenemy Feud Signals Lapses in Tabloid Journalism

First they were BFFs. Then they were mortal enemies. Next it was kiss kiss, make up. Then they seemed to be somewhat more tolerant of one another. But then one of them upped the ante by donating a gift to charity. And later it got plain ugly.

And now? Let's just say that one of them is starting to sound like a petulant 6-year old.

"She's copying me! She's copying me! If she gets pregnant with my boyfriend's twin brother, I'm going to go blooey!"

Oh my Lord, make it stop.

I know as well as anyone this story has very little to do with celebrity politics. It's pretty much a rehash of the same garbage you can find on all the other celebrity gossip sites. But, I cannot look away, I mean, come on, these two are grown-ups -- one of them already raising a child -- and their emotional development is so superficial and stagnant, it makes me want to pray for the next generation of celebrity train wrecks.

Stories like this sell magazines and online advertising better than anything I could ever splice together. I don't fault celebrity tabloids for making fluff like this headline news. My big complaint is about week after week story lines focusing on nothing else. How many times is Britney Spears going to be on the cover of OK! magazine? It's become sort of a running joke in my house every time the free subscription arrives.

"Guess who's on the cover of OK!? Okay, you guessed it." Next.

If tabloid journalists would do a better job of digging the dirt rather than constantly focusing on the bottom line, perhaps I'd be reading some real news in those glossies. No wonder their colleagues think of them as the Danny Bonaduces of journalism.

Get investigative. Plant some restaurant spies around Hollywood and Manhattan. Give me something juicy I can really dig my teeth into. For heavens sake, throw this Baltimore gal a meaty bone.

Perhaps it's because I only began spending my life on the Internet last summer that I missed the big news story about the Paris Hilton cell phone hack. Don't follow this link if you're easily offended by nudity and inappropriate language. Apparently, someone hacked into or figured out the easy password to Paris Hilton's cell phone, providing access to actual celebrity phone numbers, email accounts, and naughtily positioned photographs. The FBI began an investigation and then...well...because the tabloids lost interest, or more likely never bothered with the story in the first place, who knows?

I found this item while searching for information about a different celebrity news story. It no longer links to The Drudge Report which is a real shame given its news worthiness.