Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Monday, April 15, 2024

I might vomit if I see another popup window advertising links to images of Britney Spears' crotch. Unless that thing is housing a population about to vote in a presidential primary, I don't think it is important.

It's no secret that over the past five years our country has become more and more infatuated with anything Hollywood related. If you are familiar with the phrase "Brangelina," then you know exactly what I'm talking about.

So who is to blame for our celebrity-obsessed culture? Is it the media? Or, dare I even say it, the public?

Magazine covers have been plastered with celebrity faces since The National Enquirer popularized the tabloid in 1967 and switched to covering celebrity culture due to the rise of the movie industry.

The '70s brought such publications as US Weekly and Star magazine, both of which fueled the rise of celebrity culture in America. From there, is the snowball effect of reality TV, celebrity talk shows, clothing lines, endorsements and I need not even mention the E! Entertainment Television.

People magazine alone supposedly paid $4 million to have the rights to publish the first photos of the Jolie-Pitt baby. Celebrity babies, or "Celebabies," are making more headlines in magazines than people who are actually important.

Since the media are supplying us with so much useless information, you would think the demand's coming from somewhere.

And unfortunately, it's coming from our own wallets.

A recent article in Conde Nast Portfolio magazine explained what they call the Britney Industrial Complex, or BIC. No, it's not a factory where panties are made for the rich girl who can't seem to actually wear them. It estimates how much she is worth annually to the economy: $110 million to $120 million.

Not bad for a girl who only pockets about $9 million a year.

The BIC is calculated by the press Spears elicits, the money she is paid for just showing up at an event or how much people are willing to dish out to have the table next to hers at a Vegas nightclub.

When contemplating the No. 1 most popular Yahoo! search subject for the past seven years, you might think of the following words: global warming, 9/11, President Bush, Iran, Iraq or oil prices.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

But you would be wrong.

Of course you probably guessed what it is by now: Britney Spears.

Oh, wait. It was only six out of seven years. We must not forget 2004, the year of Paris Hilton.

And these are just two celebrities of the dozens and dozens.

So, how do we wean off our obsession with celebrity news and get back to what is important?

If we are so starved to read about other people's lives, why don't the celebrity media write real, human-interest stories instead? You know, a story that the average human would be interested in? I would much rather read an in-depth profile of Natalie Portman's political causes than a story about J.Lo's pregnancy.

As the Britney train wreck continues, I may just have to make my peace with the fact that this might never change. In a culture driven by money and status, what editor wouldn't want their magazine flying off the shelves?

Unfortunately, this crap is what keeps selling.

Rebecca Ganzak is a journalism senior. Her column appears on Thursdays.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.