January 11, 2007

Seeking Fame and Fortune at Any Cost

From USA Today: "'When you open a celebrity magazine, it's all about the money and being rich and famous,' says 22-year-old Cameron Johnson of Blacksburg, Va. 'The TV shows we watch -- anything from The Apprentice where the intro to the show is the 'money song' -- to Us Weekly magazine where you see all the celebrities and their $6 million homes. We see reality TV shows with Jessica and Nick living the life. We see Britney and Paris. The people we relate to outside our friends are those people.'"

Oh, Big Brother.

According to a Pew Research Center poll, 81 percent of 18- to 25-year-olds say getting rich is one of their generation's most important goals and 51 percent said the same about being famous.

Beyond the untouchable celebrities in the fields of entertainment and sports are the everyday folks who are becoming celebs thanks to reality TV and the Web. MySpace, YouTube, Facebook -- these sites allow average Joes and Janes to become overnight sensations, whether by showing skin, stupidity and lack of sanity. As do reality shows like The Real World and Jackass. In a world void of mass media, many of these folks would be relegated to the role of village idiot, peddling their take on humor or sex at the next subway stop, hoping to wrangle a few nickels out of people.

But in a world consumed by information and multimedia, in a world where skin, stupidity and lack of sanity are heralded, in a world where William Hung could top the Billboard charts, the village idiot reigns supreme. For the village idiot has no shame and seeks fame at any cost. Why? Because if fame is attained, the cost paid is much less than the amount made. Look at the bucks and popularity some 15-minutes-of-famers have spun out of stardom on reality TV, on MySpace, on blogs.

Now, if only we could. [USA Today]

1 comment:

Fernweher said...

Easy fame and fortune..who wouldnt want that?