All types of media, from television to social platforms to podcasts, are a huge part of the lives of celebrities. In fact, the entire situation is akin to the question of whether the chicken or the egg came first. Celebrities are in the media because they are famous, yet because various media entities keep them in front of people, they stay well-known. The connection is complicated.
Here are four aspects of the relationship between celebrities and the media.
In this digital age, people are bombarded by constant images and information from many different directions. Much of this content is about other people who are known well, and its tone is mercurial. Public opinion about celebrities can suddenly change. When this happens, it may cause a ripple effect, including in endorsement agreements celebrities have with various brands.
Media outlets are concerned with audience share, and they cover positive as well as negative celebrity news with equal vigor. From marriages and births to arrests and scandals, the degree of coverage and the tone various media outlets take can affect how the public views high-profile people.
Complex Legal Issues
The relationship between celebrities and media outlets is not only complex in its own right, but when serious legal problems arise, the media can become another character in the real-life dramas playing out around celebrities. Michael Jackson, for example, faced extremely complicated legal situations. Entertainment lawyer John Branca worked with this mega-celebrity to sort out legal tangles. Because of the changing nature of constant coverage, the specialty niche for entertainment attorneys has grown in importance. Famous persons need knowledgeable professionals to guide them through the complications of life in the modern spotlight.
New Celebrity Categories
The rise of social media has ushered in new types of celebrities. Often called influencers, these online personalities can garner huge audiences that are engaged. Brands are increasingly turning to these types of well-known people to market brands and products because influencers speak directly to specific audiences who are truly interested in what they have to say.
Consumers may consider focused influencer testimonies more trustworthy than those of celebrities fronting huge, general advertising campaigns. There are even subcategories of influencers, including:
- Micro influencers
- Macro influencers
- Bloggers and vloggers
This niche industry divides influencer specialties into various types to make it easier for marketers to choose the best people to approach for their brands.
Blurring of Reality and Fantasy
The rise of so-called reality television has blurred the lines between actual life and idealized images. Reality television programs seemingly invite people into the lives of well-known people or into exciting events in the lives of less well-known persons, such as in the case of “The Biggest Loser.” With these types of programs, audiences bask in the idea they are seeing personal details about others’ lives. However, audiences may be seeing programs based more on performance than personal experience.
Celebrities and the media have a complicated, tetchy dance. This has long been the case, with media producing celebrities, fueling people’s fame, and covering falls from favor, all with equanimity. The only clear conclusion is that in modern society, celebrities and media rely on one another.