Friday, July 18, 2008

Celebrity Status



Submitted by guest writer - JJ

Living in Los Angeles I have seen many people go from being an “unknown average person” to “celebrity status “ in a very short time. My son went to high school with an American Idol finalist who went from being a performer in her high school theatre productions to an International celebrity, in a very short time. Her life is changed forever.

We know a few kids who played high school sports ,then college, and are now professional athletes commanding multi-million dollar contracts, they too are “celebrities” and can never be the same people they were just a few short years ago. They are now a “commodity” promoted by “handlers, managers, and marketers” all looking for a piece of the profit.

I don’t think the Gosselins sought “celebrity status”! I think they got caught up in the idea of sharing their family with others and it just grew at a ridiculous pace. Once you are on television and your show becomes a “hit”, it is no longer your show. Now it is a way for the network to promote you and ,market you, and create a “brand “ from you. I think any one of us that was in a position to make $65,000 an episode would take it! Be honest with yourselves before you judge. Who wouldn’t want the peace of mind knowing that your family is financially set, especially when you have 8 children! I think they (especially Kate) got caught up in the attention and the “perks”. The hairdressers and costumers, the caterers, the attention from people everywhere. Good or bad that is what “celebrity” brings.

17 comments:

online free lottery said...

Such a nice blog. I hope you will create another post like this.

Anya said...

I really agree with all the points here, but most especially about it not being our place to judge.

Things have occured very fast and if they got a little carried away with the freebies, I think it's understandable and does not make them monsters.

I still don't think we have "proof" of the $65k per episode that's been tossed around. Whatever they are making, however, I for one wish them all the best and hope they enjoy everything when it lasts. I think being on the celebrity bandwagon has as many negatives as positives, but if the money is managed properly it should go a long way to securing their families future.

Anonymous said...

I think people get caught up in the moment and of course the money and it does just balloon from there. Once you step your foot in, I am sure it is very hard to have a balanced perspective. Jon and Kate appear to being handling things well. Their lives are just under a microscope right now by some people that are hell bent on bringing them down.

Georgia Peach said...

I don't really agree with this. I think that Jon and Kate did seek out celebrity status. They had plenty of people willing to help them but they turned to a TV show instead. And I can be honest with myself - I would rather make an honest living than off the backs of my kids.

SoniaK said...

I think Kate did get caught up in it from the very beginning. Even before the show. She wanted as many free things and "perks" as you called them as she could get. I beg to differ with you. I do not feel most of America would do the same thing.

Bohemianmoon said...

I one does their due diligence on this family, going back to right before the sextuplets were born, there is a solid amount of evidence regarding the Gosselin's issues of self entitlement.

Unfortunately for them, the leading newspaper in their area, and the bloggers for same, refused to retract their comments, especially those that Jon had made on the newspaper blogger's site regarding the their then forthcoming hearing appealing their "right" for the taxpayers of PA to continue to pay for a medical nurse for the then turned one years olds, all of whom were healthy and did NOT need medical care.

Please note as well, that this blog's comments are from persons that lived in the direct area of the Gosselins, and from a number of knew them personally.

The Gosselins have never been gracious for what they have gotten BEFORE their celebrity status, and even less so since.

I have major issues with the explotation of children. And since "reality shows" are not regulated as are shows/films by the actors' unions, this family is not required to adhere to child labor laws.

Their celebrity status and "perks" therein are off the backs of 8 children that are at the whim of adults, all whom are aware that the amount of time that those children are forced to deal with lights, cameras, grips, and adults prying into and filming their most private moments is unregulated, and therefore they can ride the gravy train of two 8 year olds and 6 four year olds until it runs dry.

Is this REALLY what you want to applaud?

Guinevere said...

I fail to see how the show is "off the backs" of the Gosselin children. It's (very) debatable that the children are harmed by the show, and I certainly don't think J&K believe that they are - they wouldn't do it if they did.

Also, what you call "due diligence", a lot of other people would call "stalking". I shake my head in wonder at the cluelessness of the Gosselin haters, who without a shred of self-awareness talk about the "damage" to the children, while they do everything in their power to ruin J&K's lives and relationships. It is sick, sick behavior.

Bohemianmoon said...

How are they NOT living off the backs of their children?

Neither of the Gosselin parents work a job outside of TLC, save for the speaking engagements, in which they talk about raising two sets of multiple children.

Speaking engagements in which now, purportedly, they are cancelling in favor of securing more lucrative engagements that pay $25,000, plus first class airline and 5* hotels.

Who would hire them to speak if it were not for their children? What would there be to talk about?

They are making money off the the gross exploitation of innocent children. Children who are not of age to give consent to being filmed period. Let alone at all hours of the day and night (they have cameras in their BEDROOMS for Lord's sake) and in the most private and compromising of positions, ie: being bathed and eliminating bodily waste.

I am unsure of how you are equating due diligence with stalking. Anyone with one iota of intelligence is going to research all they can BEFORE they formulate and voice their own opinions. To take anything at face value and speculation is the sign of one who chooses to live ignorantly.

In this day and age of the technology that offers us instantanious knowledge with the click of a mouse, I am gobsmacked that persons don't educate themselves enough on the facts of a situation/issue before they speak on it.

More than intelligence, that is simple common sense.

You talk about self awareness regarding the damage to children who are being raised in a virtual fishbowl. I have no clue?

Please, pray tell, tell me how this CANNOT be damaging, not only in the here and now, for all of the children, but for them in the future?

Please, show me some factual studies by mental health professionals that adhere to this type of atmosphere for growing children. Please do your due diligence, er, ah, stalking, and find some solid abstracts that praise and state that raising children the way these eight have been raised for the last three years is a healthy one, now and for the long term future.

I will look for your findings, and links to same, tomorrow.

While you are at it, please explain to me why these children, in the State of Pennsylvania, are not covered by the State's child labor laws.

My due dilligence on this family goes far beyond the family at hand. My due dilligence reaches for protection of all children who are not at the age of consent whose parents think it is perfectly fine to exploit them for an income.

See you tomorrow. As stated, I look forward to reading your research.

Anonymous said...

Re: comments from Bohemianmoon
Do you know these people personally? Why are you delving into their lives at such a personal level? Why are you so angry about them? I am not defending them in any way, I just can't understand that type of obsession for people you don't even know. Turn the TV off and if everyone does that their 15 minutes of fame will be over.
There are many children right now who are seriously abused and could use an advocate. Maybe that is where your time would be better served.

limabean said...

"Turn the TV off and if everyone does that their 15 minutes of fame will be over."

So your answer to this is to ignore it? How about the next group of exploited kids? And the next?

Why not fix this problem by ensuring it will not happen again in the future? Take a look at Coogan's Law (California). This was created because of the exact things that are happening in the Gosselin childrens life. Don't they deserve protecting?

I think they do. But don't worry, you can just turn off the tv and forget about it. Thankfully there are others that will take up their cause to help.

Milliegirl said...

Limabean

These kids seem pretty well taken care of to me. I don't see how they are exploited. Why only this family? Take up "their cause"? These "others" as you stated seem almost like vigilantes. Why don't they go through the proper channels if they feel so strongly. And if they are, let us know what government official they have contacted.

Bohemianmoon said...

I am still looking forward to your research Guinevere.

To Anon 8:29:

No, I do not know the family personally. I am unsure of what that has to do with anything. These children are NOT protected under Pennsylvania State or Federal Law.

I did not know the children of "Kid Nation" either. But that did not stop me from lobbying and advocating for them. As a result of jointed effort with other concerned parties, the State of New Mexico now has laws that govern children actors and those in "reality" shows.

For the life of me I do not understand why you would NOT want these children - all children- to be protected.

I advocate daily for the protection of children. It is what I do - it is my profession.

Now, why is it again you don't feel the need for ALL children to be protected?

I look forward to your response.

JJ said...

Living in Los Angeles and being very close to the studios, I have seen my share of "stage parents"! At every level from elementary school to high school I have experienced many rude, pushy, obnoxious parents. Parents who saw their children as nothing but "meal tickets". Were these parents egotistical and selfish?
Yes they were. Were they loving and nurturing to their children? No they were not. Would I ever act that way? Not in a million years. Unfortunately that does not constitute child abuse. You need evidence to accuse someone of neglect and abuse. Anyone who works for the social services dept, or school district, or is a legal aid in Family Court, knows that without proof, you cannot go further. I don't think that Jon and Kate are doing the right thing for their children and I do think they are riding the gravy train of celebrity, however I would be very careful about using the word abuse, until there is irrefutable evidence.

Guinevere said...

Quote: How are they NOT living off the backs of their children? Neither of the Gosselin parents work a job outside of TLC, save for the speaking engagements, in which they talk about raising two sets of multiple children.
So? Are writers who write about their children and family life making money “off the backs” of their children? Were the Osmonds? How about the example previously given of parents who farm and expect the children to pitch in?
Obviously, the Gosselins, through an odd set of circumstances, have becoming something of a brand, and yes, they support themselves through that brand. I think there is thoughtful discussion to be had about the pros and cons of that, but I don’t think anything is served by the hyperbole and hysteria dished out at GWoP, or by ridiculous phrases like “off the backs of their children.” No matter what the GWoPpers want to believe, any reasonable normal person watching the show would conclude that the children are healthy, loved and well cared for.

Quote: Speaking engagements in which now, purportedly, they are cancelling in favor of securing more lucrative engagements that pay $25,000, plus first class airline and 5* hotels.
1) That’s just a rumor at this point, and one I find hard to credit; I don’t see J&K pulling that kind of money but 2) if they are, so what? The last time your boss wanted to give you a raise, did you say, “Oh, no, I’ll just stay at this lower salary”? If they can command all that (again: doubtful), then they should go for it. It may be that asking for more is a way of limiting engagements. If the Gosselins can command $25K (see above; seriously, really, $25K?) for one appearance, when supposedly they were only making $3K before, well, then, even my shaky math skills tell me that they can do one appearance and still make more than they would have at eight, and spend those extra seven days (or however long) with their kids.

Quote: Who would hire them to speak if it were not for their children? What would there be to talk about?

I don’t think just talking about their experiences and their family (and apparently, from what I’ve heard, they speak about their religious faith a lot, too) is wrong. It’s J&K’s story too. Is, say, every comedian who ever tells a joke about their kid “exploiting” that child? Is Bill Cosby a child exploiter?

Quote: They are making money off the the gross exploitation of innocent children. Children who are not of age to give consent to being filmed period. Let alone at all hours of the day and night (they have cameras in their BEDROOMS for Lord's sake) and in the most private and compromising of positions, ie: being bathed and eliminating bodily waste.

1) When children are not at an age where they can give consent, their parents have the legal right to make decisions for them. I assume you disapprove of all child actors, too? Babies and toddlers “act” in commercials, TV and film, and they don’t consent. Older children act, and may say they like it, but again, I don’t believe (I’m not a lawyer) that an 8-year-old can give “informed” consent – so I think it’s still the parents’ decision. Should there be a law against acting before the age of 16 or 18? 2) Who cares what room they are being filmed in? I don’t understand how a BEDROOM of a child is different from the KITCHEN or the LIVINGROOM. Or even, gasp, the BASEMENT. 3) I’m skeeved out by the implication of “compromising” positions. These kids were filmed in their bath at the ages of one, two and three. They were filmed (discreetly) on the potty at three. I doubt they will be filmed in either situation now that they are four. I don’t understand the salacious mind that has to sexualize a three year old in the bath (with no genitalia showing). It really shows what a sick society we are living in, when people see something dirty in a three year old taking a bath.
The most I can say is that the kids might be embarrassed at some later point, perhaps as teenagers. I’m not embarrassed by the naked pics my parents took of me when I was three or four (it was the 70s! In Marin! Also, people’s minds weren’t totally in the gutter, apparently!). I’m more embarrassed of the school pictures from 1st-5th grade; my mom should not have been allowed to cut bangs.

Quote: I am unsure of how you are equating due diligence with stalking. Anyone with one iota of intelligence is going to research all they can BEFORE they formulate and voice their own opinions. To take anything at face value and speculation is the sign of one who chooses to live ignorantly.
Wow, I have to research all TV shows before I watch them? “All (I) can”? That’s going to take time. A lot of time. Maybe I should quit my job? Stop taking the classes I’m taking? Don’t cook, clean the house, go to the gym, read, or spend time with the people I love? Due diligence certainly requires a lot of one. I’m not sure I’m up to it.
Seriously, this is what the GWoPpers seem to consider “due diligence” (a term I’ve only heard in legal and business contexts before, but hey, I guess I lack an iota of intelligence and am just over here, choosing to live ignorantly):
1) Contacting CPS on the Gosselins, trying to get their children taken away. 2) Contacting the IRS on the Gosselins, trying to get them audited in the hopes that they aren’t reporting their church appearance earnings.
3) Contacting tabloids about the Gosselins, repeating second-hand stories from unattributed sources.
4) Driving by the Gosselins’ house multiple times and reporting on what they see or don’t see.
5) Repeating rumors and speculation on various message boards as truth, often in a process similar to the game “telephone” (e.g.: speculation on TWoP regarding Beth that went from “I wonder why we haven’t seen Beth in a few eps” to “Beth was obviously disgusted with Kate in Utah; I bet they’ve had a falling out” to “Well, you know, Beth and Kate had a falling out and aren’t friends anymore”).
6) Making contact with (actually arranging face to face meetings!) relatives of in-laws of the Gosselins, simply because relative of in-law is willing to hang her family’s (oh, wait; it’s not HER family; there’s no evidence she even knows the Gosselins) dirty laundry in public in an apparent bid for attention (sorry, my bad, she just wants the TRUTH to come out. She’s a latter day Woodward. Or Bernstein. Or maybe a combination of the two).
7) Tracking down the Gosselins’ home address. Agitating to get it published on the GWoP blog. (For what purpose? I shudder to think.)
There are probably a few other examples of “due diligence” I’m not thinking of. Do criticizing Kate’ ass and hair count? How about comparing her to a woman who murdered her children? How about diagnosing her (through the TV! As all responsible mental health professionals do!) with Munchausen’s by proxy, bipolar disorder, psychosis and borderline personality disorder (but NOT OCD; Kate has self-diagnosed herself with that and the GWoPpers can’t agree with Kate or the Earth would spin off of its axis).
Quote: In this day and age of the technology that offers us instantanious knowledge with the click of a mouse, I am gobsmacked that persons don't educate themselves enough on the facts of a situation/issue before they speak on it.

I’m sorry to cause you to be gobsmacked. That sounds painful. I’m tendering my job resignation this morning, so I can spend the rest of the day doing due diligence on the denizens of “Big Brother” in preparation for watching tonight. I wouldn’t feel right watching (or, heaven forbid TALKING about) the show without being first “educated”.
Edit: I may have to DVR and watch later. I don’t know if I can educate myself “enough” in the remaining hours. There are still 12 houseguests left. That’s a lot of “due diligence”! Why, just tracking down all of their home addresses and diagnosing their mental disorders is going to take at least a few hours. Could I maybe put off contacting various entities (ICE, CIA, FBI, Interpol, what have you) in an attempt to ruin their lives until AFTER I watch the show?

Quote: More than intelligence, that is simple common sense.
It’s a wonder I can get myself dressed in the morning without an hour spent trying to fit my right shoe on my left foot, so lacking in common sense am I.

Quote: You talk about self awareness regarding the damage to children who are being raised in a virtual fishbowl. I have no clue? Please, pray tell, tell me how this CANNOT be damaging, not only in the here and now, for all of the children, but for them in the future?
My crystal ball is broken, so I cannot predict the future at this time. Sorry!

Quote: Please, show me some factual studies by mental health professionals that adhere to this type of atmosphere for growing children. Please do your due diligence, er, ah, stalking, and find some solid abstracts that praise and state that raising children the way these eight have been raised for the last three years is a healthy one, now and for the long term future.
Do they have to be “factual” studies? I assume fictional studies won’t suffice?
Okay, I turned to my trusty research assistant (note to self: hire real research assistant – will be big help on “due diligence on all television shows before watching” project!), Google. Googling the phrase “studies of children on reality tv” turned up…one opinion piece (http://www.dailynews.com/editorial/ci_9881660) and a bunch of unrelated links.
However, as we all know, it is difficult to prove a negative. So I invite you, “Bohemianmoon”, nay, I entreat you! to please provide me with “factual” studies (including links!) proving that appearing on reality TV is harmful to children.

I, myself, am undertaking a study on the effects of excessive schadenfraude on one's karma. Results should be interesting!

After that, I am planning a research paper on "Helping Children You Claim to Care for By Attempting to Destroy the Life and Livelihoods of Their Parents".

Quote: I will look for your findings, and links to same, tomorrow.
Mea culpa! I was…living my life yesterday, and didn’t see your post until today. I hope I’ve made up in verbosity what I lacked in timeliness. Once I’ve quit my job and school, I should be able to reply to all inquiries much more speedily.

Quote: While you are at it, please explain to me why these children, in the State of Pennsylvania, are not covered by the State's child labor laws.

Being neither a resident of Pennsylvania, nor a lawyer versed in labor laws, I cannot say. Question: does due diligence require moving to Pennsylvania and enrolling in law school? I would imagine that attending law school would cut into my due diligence time – I guess it’s sort of a Catch-22, huh?

Quote: My due dilligence on this family goes far beyond the family at hand. My due dilligence reaches for protection of all children who are not at the age of consent whose parents think it is perfectly fine to exploit them for an income.
Good for you; I would suggest that there are many (very many) more worthy uses of your time. Think about the child slave labor that is responsible for many of the goods available in U.S. stores. That in itself would be a life’s work in the arena of protecting exploited children. I am aware that one of the mantras of GWoP is that “It is possible to worry about more than one child at a time. Worrying about the Gosselin children does not preclude worrying about other children, or other weighty issues in general.” Yet I can’t help but think that there are still only 24 hours in a day (note to self: build machine to expand number of hours in a day infinitely…oh, never mind). It is a simple fact that people need to prioritize their concerns.

Furthermore, I would suggest that those with GENUINE concerns about the Gosselin children do themselves no service by mingling with those who are clearly catty, jealous, petty and in some cases simply unhinged in their reactions to Jon and Kate Gosselin. The credibility, such as it is, of GWoP is very much affected by these people; they have a major impact on how the site is perceived.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
I think people get caught up in the moment and of course the money and it does just balloon from there. Once you step your foot in, I am sure it is very hard to have a balanced perspective. Jon and Kate appear to being handling things well. Their lives are just under a microscope right now by some people that are hell bent on bringing them down
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Oh, no the infamous they're just jealous accusation. No one wants to “bring them down.” They will surely tumble on their own. In the meanwhile if possible there are some people that are concerned that with this reality TV onslaught now children who can not give consent are being used to make money for others without any laws to protect any of that money made for their own use in the future.

_________________________________________________________
Anonymous said...
Re: comments from Bohemianmoon
Do you know these people personally? Why are you delving into their lives at such a personal level? Why are you so angry about them?
_++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++=
Doesn't sound like any delving was done at a personal level, all the information is readily available. No one broke into their homes or even went through their garbage. OMG, she read the online news and blog! Horrors.
Get real I can go to any reality TV forum on the net and find plenty of links to “personal” information on the contestants. Plenty of people do that on Big Brother contestants too.
________________________________________________________-----
Guinevere said...

I’m not embarrassed by the naked pics my parents took of me when I was three or four (it was the 70s! In Marin! Also, people’s minds weren’t totally in the gutter, apparently!).

So, gee, how would you feel to find in some pedophile's stash you baby photos where available. And really you think there were no pedophiles back in the 70s! Right. I'll let you just believe that. And that youtube video that wasn't blurred was just being viewed my sweet old grannies.

So, many of your responses back to Bohemianmoon are just so far off. You compare consenting adults to children so therefore if any of you're arguments do hold water I can't get over the apples to oranges you are using for your comparisons.
___________________________________________________________________
) Tracking down the Gosselins’ home address. Agitating to get it published on the GWoP blog. (For what purpose? I shudder to think.)
================================================================
I'd like to see links to any of those posts. From what I've seen they always remove any personal information from posts. If there are posters asking for that information I'm fairly sure those administrators would not post it if someone did attempt to post it. It appears to be a moderated posting site. Plus, anyone that wants that information can pay a few bucks and get it themselves. They don't need a blog post to give it to them.

bigsis88 said...

"When children are not at an age where they can give consent, their parents have the legal right to make decisions for them. I assume you disapprove of all child actors, too? Babies and toddlers “act” in commercials, TV and film, and they don’t consent."

Guinevere, I can't understand what led you to the aforementioned assumption. First, you equate the Gosselin children with child actors, when, according to the mantra of the show, they are just living their everyday lives. As Anonymous 7:44 said, it's like comparing apples to oranges. Actors (of any age) portray character roles, complete with names, backgrounds and traits created by writers. For example, one can watch a popular actor portray a villain on TV without assuming that he is evil in real life. The Gosselin children aren't acting, according to their parents, the producers, and the premise of the show. When Kate uses a term such as "Mady dramatics", she's not talking about a character named Mady played by so-and-so; she's speaking about her daughter, a real person, not a made-up one. Adults are astute enough to understand how networks and reality shows manipulate situations, edit selectively, etc.; however, I doubt if Mady gets teased in school for said "dramatics" one of her fellow classmates will pipe up with, "Well you know, not everything you see on television is real..." These children have been painted involuntarily as characters and their parents haven't seem to give much thought as to the effects they will have once they step outside of the circle of cameras.

"Furthermore, I would suggest that those with GENUINE concerns about the Gosselin children do themselves no service by mingling with those who are clearly catty, jealous, petty and in some cases simply unhinged in their reactions to Jon and Kate Gosselin. The credibility, such as it is, of GWoP is very much affected by these people; they have a major impact on how the site is perceived."

I agree with this paragraph, but I think it applies to both sides of the coin. The credibility of those who support J&K+8 is similarly shot by people who constantly "plead 8". I once read an insightful post on a different site (TWoP, I think) in which the author wrote that if Kate were a racial minority in the same circumstances, she would be perceived as a "welfare queen". I don't think she is one, because I find that term misleading and overused, but the future psychologist in me is interested in the "angle" the mainstream media has used to tell the Gosselins' story.

tallulah said...

not being our place to judge.
Yes, we may judge, says Leviticus 19:15 (judge fairly) and Proverbs 31:9 (judge righteously).

I don't "HATE" anyone, but I just plain do not like Kate As Seen On TV. I don't like her personality, behavior, or reactions. I don't agree with many of the things she does, and I do agree that she and Jon are making a living off their kids. But, the show is not forever. In 5 years, do you think anyone will worry about what Kate does?