The other day Erica (the owner at yummymummyclub.ca) asked me what I thought of this letter that Pink wrote on her website talking about the paparazzi and her newborn daughter. She asked if I thought it was worth it to comment. I did, and I wrote this and posted it on my YMC blog. I think it might have surprised Erica with how I felt about it. Here’s what I wrote;
Celebrities and the paparazzi – they kind of go hand in hand, don’t they? But what also goes hand in hand are celebrities complaining about the paparazzi. Let’s not forget just a few weeks ago when Tori Spelling ‘crashed’ her car into a wall while speeding away from pursuing paparazzi (please, please, please, read as much sarcasm into that statement as you possibly can) and then tweeted about it basically comparing herself to Princess Diana.
The fact of the matter is I write about celebrity gossip for another site where I have access to four photo agencies – or paparazzi – pictures, so I can see these pictures and who the most popular targets are. I can also see how many celebrities take as much advantage of these paparazzi as the paparazzi take advantage of the celebrities. Believe me – there are many celebrities who call the paparazzi to tip them off about where they’ll be and when, so they can get their pictures in the magazines and on the gossip blogs. And a lot of those celebs are the ones who complain the loudest about it.
Yesterday Pink, who just last week became a mother after giving birth to her daughter Willow Sage, wrote an open letter on her blog basically asking for privacy for her newborn daughter. Here’s a sampling of what she wrote;
“Here’s the bottom line: we don’t want you to take our little girl’s picture. We don’t want you to one day follow our little girl home from school. We don’t want our little girl’s picture in a magazine or on a blog. If you take or publish her picture, it is against our wishes, and without our consent as parents, as people.”
So really – I get it – completely. I get it because I remember that fiercely protective feeling of being a new mother. I get it because I have seen firsthand some of the shots taken of Pink, her husband Carey Hart and their new baby Willow at the beach and out for a stroll. I get it because sometimes you just don’t want your picture taken, no matter how famous you are.
“I have this to say to the guy in the gray Toyota with no license plate: I will never participate in a staged paparazzi shot. You have the wrong celeb. Unfortunately for you, as a result of your stalking, you will continue to get the same boring shot of me leaving yoga class because other than growing a child and preparing blissfully for his arrival, I don’t have much going on at the moment. So… I take yoga classes. Lots of them.
But just so you know, I AM going to the Horrible Bosses premiere on the 30th, where I will walk the red carpet. Feel free to show up there. I won’t be in my yoga clothes and will be showing my bump off proudly for any photographers who go through the respectful channels to “get a good shot”.
So see? Even when they don’t want you taking their picture – they really kind of do want you to take their picture, just on their terms.
Now I understand what Pink was saying because for her, it’s about her daughter’s privacy. But there are many, many celebrities whose children live a rather paparazzi-free existence on a daily basis. Believe me – the rich and famous are able to keep their private lives private – when they want. And there are also many celebrities who have no problem sticking their kids in front of a camera to make a buck. I have a hard time respecting a celebrity who complains about their privacy or getting chased when they have multiple ‘reality’ shows in the works and like to tweet out exact locations of where their family will be. Just saying.
But I do respect what Pink is asking here – because when I posted the letter on the other blog I write for, I chose not to put in the paparazzi pictures of her, Carey and Willow (because I did have some of those) and instead, I just put in pictures of Pink herself. I did it because as a mother, I respect what she’s saying, but as an entertainment blogger I am still rather sceptical about the request because she’s not the first celebrity to have a baby and definitely not the first to complain about the paparazzi. I have to think that she knows it’s a part of her reality that people will want to see the pictures of her daughter, and so going for a walk on the beach at two days postpartum is bound to draw some attention from the paps. I also can’t say that I won’t post those pictures in the future – because her fans – the ones who buy her albums and the ones who go to her concerts – they want to see the pictures.
There are many, many paparazzi out there that go to unsafe lengths to get pictures, and I honestly make it a point not to publish pictures if the celebrity looks like they’re confronting the paparazzi or if the pictures are deliberately unflattering. But there are just as many celebrities who count on those paparazzi to keep their pictures in the news, thus keeping them relevant. More often than you would think, those paparazzi are tipped off by the very celebrity who is complaining about them on twitter. Sometimes, things aren’t as clear as they seem.
I wonder if the stars who complain about the paparazzi would really be happy if no one cared enough to take their picture? What do you think?