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Is Celebrity Obsession Bad for Us?

| May 20, 2014 | 114 Comments
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Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images

Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images


To respond to the Do Now, you can comment below or tweet your response. Be sure to begin your tweet with @KQEDEdspace and end it with #DoNowCelebrity

For more info on how to use Twitter, click here.


Do Now

Given the context of income inequality and changing demographics across the country, is the American obsession with celebrities good or bad for our culture? Why?

Introduction

Renowned author Stephen King once said in an interview with Time Magazine, “I think there ought to be some serious discussion by smart people, really smart people, about whether or not proliferation of things like The Smoking Gun and TMZ and YouTube and the whole celebrity culture is healthy.”

Many of us are at least somewhat clued-in to celebrity gossip, whether we want to be or not. We just experienced an example of this ubiquitous knowledge last week when surveillance footage surfaced of Beyonce’s sister Solange attacking Jay-Z in an elevator. “Everyone” was talking about it. Whether or not you peruse celebrity gossip blogs or magazines, you probably heard something about this celebrity showdown via social media or friends.

Though you may not personally be obsessed with celebrities, many people are, and this obsession can cause cultural paradigm shifts. Some of these are good, like when football player Michael Sam came out, potentially making young gay athletes more comfortable being open about their sexuality. In other cases, celebrity culture and obsession with status, wealth and looks can convey that “average” people aren’t good enough, and this can be damaging to young people as they grow and find their place in the world. Some researchers posit that there is, in fact, a growing disorder called Celebrity Worship Syndrome, though this personality disorder is not yet classified.

Being interested in the personal lives of celebrities might seem like harmless fun, but is it? With the growing gap in income equality in America, is it healthy and realistic for young people to aspire to become the next pop music icon or NFL star when the odds of achieving such goals are comparable to winning the lottery?

Resource

Discover News video Why We Worship Celebrities
Celebrities are worshiped worldwide. They’re chased by paparazzi, websites, TV shows, and magazines are dedicated to following their every move. But Laci wonders: What’s the fascination? The reason, it turns out, is more complex than you might think.


To respond to the Do Now, you can comment below or tweet your response. Be sure to begin your tweet with @KQEDedspace and end it with #DoNowCelebrity

For more info on how to use Twitter, click here.

We encourage students to reply to other people’s tweets to foster more of a conversation. Also, if students tweet their personal opinions, ask them to support their ideas with links to interesting/credible articles online (adding a nice research component) or retweet other people’s ideas that they agree/disagree/find amusing. We also value student-produced media linked to their tweets. You can visit our video tutorials that showcase how to use several web-based production tools. Of course, do as you can… and any contribution is most welcomed.


More Resources

ABC News article The Psychology of Celebrity Worship
Looking at the legions of fans mourning the loss of Michael Jackson, one might think celebrity worship is a modern phenomenon. But from the gods on Olympus in ancient Greece to the bobby-soxers swooning over Frank Sinatra in the late 1930s and ’40s to Brad and Angelina today, adulation of the stars is an age-old pursuit, psychologists say.

Iowa Public TV video Carl Hiaasen Takes Aim at Celebrity Culture
Author and columnist Carl Hiaasen is known for his funny fiction and fierce commentary. Now, with his new book “Star Island,” he examines the making of tabloid fodder.

New York Times Opinion article Celebrating Inequality
What are celebrities, after all? They dominate the landscape, like giant monuments to aspiration, fulfillment and overreach. But in times of widespread opportunity, the distance between gods and mortals closes, the monuments shrink closer to human size and the centrality of celebrities in the culture recedes.


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Category: Do Now, Do Now: Art and Popular Culture

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About the Author ()

Kristin Farr is KQED's Arts Education Manager. She is the creator and producer of the Emmy Award-winning video series, Art School, which brings audiences into artists' studios to learn about contemporary art, and engages learners with ideas for new ways to get creative. She is also an artist and a contributing editor for Juxtapoz Magazine.
  • Daniel

    I think the obsession is unhealthy. We are looking up to these people like idols. For example, if a popular rap artist starts wearing a certain clothing brand, people will start wearing those clothes to be somewhat like that person. I have a real life example. One of my favorite music producers is Deadmau5. Who is an electronic music producer. After watching and listening to him for over 3 years, I started to notice that he wears alot of Puma stuff. So, to this day I wear puma shoes everyday. Honestly I wear them now because they are comfortable. And since I have foot problems, they are good for them. However, I am not afraid to admit that I started wearing these because of some famous person I never met.

  • Camdon Hisey

    I don’t think it’s nearly as big of a deal as people make it out to be. Although it can give both sides of the argument (good or bad influence) depending on the celebrity being talked about. I feel the same influence is done by everyday people.

    • Dustin Remiker

      I don’t know why people have to be obsessed with a celebrity there human beings just like us but people use them as role models for themselves, so I don’t know why people are making a big deal over fans being obsessed with a specific celebrity.

  • Isaac Scarborough

    There is nothing wrong with being a fan of something, however I think that it should be kept to a reasonable level. You should appreciate your idol, however when it starts to become obsessive, then you may have a problem. Because, at the end of the day, their just humans too, nothing more. This obsessive behavior can negatively impact our society. Certain icons and stars can impact that way individuals thinks. May it be bad or not. However, if they promote unhealthy lifestyles upon the population, it could cause some of them (especially kids and teens) to act like them.

    • Dustin Remiker

      I agree that people can be a fan but they should not get to the point were they are trying to be the celebrity they can use the celebrity as a role model but still have a life of there own because it could cause problems for you now or in the future if you became obsessed with the one celebrity.

  • Samantha Wojcik

    I think that celebrity obsession could be a good thing because it gives young people a role model, but that could also be a bad thing too. People will do what the celebrity doses goo or bad. I also think celebrity obsession can be taken too far and could lead to problems. Some people become too obsessed and that can become unhealthy. So depending on how far you take the celebrity obsession will determen how unhealthy it is.

  • Dustin Remiker

    Celebrity obsession has became more and more common over the years because fans look up to celebrity’s for reasons one of them might be that they think the celebrity’s life is perfect but there life still has problems like ours but fans still try to be like them. Celebrity’s can also have a positive affect on there obsessed fans because Disney stars promote helping the planet and going green.

    • Hao

      I agree with this. When people are obsessed with celebrities, they will want to do the things the celebrity did. Most celebrities do some good things, so it can be a benefit to society.

  • keiryt

    I don’t think it’s nearly as big of a deal as people make it out to be.
    Although it can give both sides of the argument (good or bad influence)
    depending on the celebrity being talked about. I feel the same influence
    is done by everyday people.

  • Valeria

    I don’t think being obsessed with a celebrity is healthy because they’re also people who want privacy. But at the same time I feel like some celebrities want people to be always looking for them and what they do. It’s not just the fault of the fan, but also of some celebrities who seek attention.

  • ana

    I think its not that healthy, because there is not a lot of privacy between them. Knowing everything about them would be “stalkish” like. Celebrities are normal people; the difference is maybe that they are more talented than others, maybe that’s why we obsess over them. Sometimes it’s nice to look up to celebrities, because they will do something good for the community.

  • chavez

    I think that being obbsessed with a celebirty is bad because it shows that they have no life. And that is bad.

  • disqus_s0QKDp3mLd

    This is one example of how media saturation about specific people is bad.

  • Isaiah G

    Are celebrity’s and their money a good influence on us?
    In this Picture I show and explain how celebrities and their lifestyles are an unhealthy way of living.

  • Julian

    I think celebrity obsession is bad because people stress out too much and over saturated and exaggerate every detail about celebrities. Instead of trying to be themselves, people focus too much on trying to be just like celebs instead of trying to be themselves. For example, Emma Watson has every right to be happy about graduating from an Ivy League College, and she can be proud of herself, but the media doesn’t need to go about sharing her story of graduating from Brown. It’s just useless information, and nobody really needs to know. My life hasn’t been dramatically changed just because I know that someone graduated, or what they wore on Saturday.

  • Connortommymario

    This picture describes how not all athletic celebrity’s are good people and how obsession over them can be bad, depending on the athlete.

  • Guest

    This is the picture to go along with our previous comment.

  • Ram

    We believe that celebrity obsession is bad because not everything is released about them. Celebrities have all done something bad and horrible, but it isn’t always published or talked about. Magazines always talk about the good and great things that people of done, like Justin Bieber. Magazines idolize him, but never say the bad things.

    -Ram, Gabe, Josh, Miles

  • TA^2

    Celebrity obsession is growing, and there are both positive and negative aspects to it. A positive example is that people may be obsessed with celebrities for entertainment purposes and some celebrities can be good role models. They may donate to charities and inspire their fans to take part in events focused on helping other people. On the other hand, some are bad role models, which some parents blame for their kid’s bad behavior. Also, someone who’s infatuated with a celebrity may stop being as social and just think about the celebrity and no one else. This can cause difficulties in relationships (such as friend to friend or parent to son/daughter). Though this may be harmful to some, others may rely on a celebrity if they’re going through a tough time. I have known someone who moved and was depressed for a period of time. The only thing they seemed to enjoy and connect with was a certain celebrity who they seemed to worship. While it seemed a bit odd to me at first, I realized what a tough time they were going through and that their obsession was helping them connect to the people around them. These are just a few of the many ways celebrity obsession can be good and bad. The picture helps support our claim by showing how the debate can be split between different groups of people.

  • Beverly F.

    In this image, we used an article of Emma Watson’s recent graduation from Brown University and changed the picture (and text) to announce Margaret Smith’s (random person we made up) graduation. While we think that this a great achievement, we find it interesting that Emma’s graduation gets advertised to the entire world while there are millions of people who graduate every year and they don’t get nearly as much attention. Our society perceives a celebrity graduating as a much larger event than if a normal civilian graduates. As a result of celebrity obsession, some spend too much time dwelling about the daily lives of celebrities while neglecting their own.

    • Guest

      Said picture

    • Beverly F.

      picture

    • Guest

      Said picture

    • Guest

      said picture

  • Maya and Claire

    I think that any human with so much power and influence, as a celebrity, has the opportunity to do really good or really bad things for society. Someone like Britney Spears, chose to do bad things with her power. Someone like Tyler Oakley, chose to do really good things with his position. Any time you give a person all this power, there is a possibility they’ll mess up. We all do. Especially with so much pressure to be perfect, the possibility of them breaking under this pressure is much higher than a regular person. People aren’t that stable, especially when in this position, so the probability it will end in badness, is great. It’s good to appreciate skill. So celebrity obsession can be good, but more often than not, it isn’t.

  • Emily

    I did an edit of a news article about Miley Cyrus. The article states that she and Liam Hemsworth were ready for a baby and the picture even showed Miley as “pregnant”. Celebrity obsession can be very unhealthy for kids and teens and can also be very hurtful towards the celebs themselves.

  • Jessi

    Celebrity obsession in any culture is alright as long as the obsession does not intrude into a person’s personal life like accessing credit card numbers, phone numbers, or going to a family member’s funeral. Celebrity obsession is positive because it can show fans to do better or to hold a positive image. It can cause fans to do good. Instead of doing something bad.

    In Korea, there is celebrity obsession as well but some of the celebrities are known as “idols”, that means they have a different standard and are supposed to hold a better presence in front of their fans. As soon as they start putting out 19+ music out, they are technically not considered as “idols” any more because they are not role models. Although celebrity obsession can be good, it can go over the line. From another Korean example, there are people called “sasaeng” fans. They are people they get to get together that are supposedly fans and try to intrude into a celebrity’s life like their personal cell phones or credit card numbers. Sometimes they even go past the line to sneak into their homes, steal items from them, go into their bathrooms, or purposely get them into a car crash.

  • Abby and Draga

    The original post shows Bynes post workout, while
    this is an everyday normal activity for the general population it is considered
    news worthy when done by a celebrity. This news article in no way teaches us
    any sort of useful information. In our altered website page we mock the
    original post by showing Amanda opening her car door and the headline saying, “Amanda
    Bynes Is Feeling Satisfied After Taking A Breath Of Air.” While this is also a
    normal activity for anyone, similarly to the original post, people are still
    interested in Bynes, a celebrity, doing basic tasks.

  • Alton Barnhart

    I believe it is because there are a handful of people out there that take it to the next level and go crazy about them like in Eminem’s Stan or #CuttingForBieber @KQEDEdspace #DoNowCelebrity http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gOMhN-hfMtY&feature=kp

  • Landon Gregory

    I think it is bad for us to worship celebrities. It takes away the originalityl we have normally. There is a reason we are so unique! We are made to be different

  • KGroberg

    Celebrity obessesion can be a positive or negative motivation. It is less of a question of if we should worship celebrities, but who do you worship? Every person has a celebrity they worship, whether they be good or bad. We are obsessed with the success of these people when there are just as wealthy, or even more wealthy people that aren’t exactaly considered ‘famous’. We are obsessed with less of their career and more of the simple activities they do that people believe to make them supirior.

  • Adanya G

    My insight on whether celebrities are good for us are that celebrities are a huge part of our lives. Without them, what would we do with our time? They influence the way we act, what we wear, the songs we sing. The main point is we’re interested in everything they do, especially quirky celebrities like Bill Murray. It’s healthy for a person to be interested in what celebrities do because maybe we might like to do the same sort of things like go to random bachelor parties.

    - Adanya and Charlie

  • Madelynn

    We edited just a random yahoo news article. I think this shows easily how celebrity obsession can be a health hazard to many people. It’s not bad all the time but when it comes to this it’s to far. (Rachel and Maddy.)

    • Swapnik K.

      I agree, this is taking it too far. I think it is okay to look up to celebrity if they do something good but hurting yourself to prove a point is not okay.

      • jasmine

        i agree.

      • Andrew

        I think this is terrible and I have no idea why anyone would cut themselves for Justin Bieber or any celebrity for that matter. The celebrities have their live’s and we have ours so why don’t we try to stop living the life the celebrities live and respect ourselves.

    • Dean

      I agree with you Madelynn this is taking celebrity obsession way to seriously. These kids are putting their bodies at risk for a person they don’t even know just because he is famous… ridiculous

    • lexy

      i agree with you and people don’t notice that Justin really doesn’t care because if he did he would have made his fans stop cutting for him but he didn’t do anything about it

    • Anfernee

      #CutForBieber <==== thats really stupid. whats the point of doing that? its not going to change anything. so stop doing that shit

  • Guest

    This shows that Justin Bieber isn’t always a great role model. Even though he donates to charities, he still makes unacceptable and bad decisions, so fans should be so obsessed over celebrities. It’s nice that his fans support him through everything, but at some point the celebrity is at fault and needs to face the consequences.

  • Julia

    This shows that Justin Bieber isn’t always a great role model. Even though he donates to charities, he still makes unacceptable and bad decisions, so fans should be so obsessed over celebrities. It’s nice that his fans support him through everything, but at some point the celebrity is at fault and needs to face the consequences that come for what they’ve done.

    • Swapnik K.

      That is a good point, celebrities aren’t always a positive influence. Justin Bieber is a good example of that. He has so many fans that obsess over him and he sometimes doesn’t do the right thing.

  • Mihir, Ricky, Josh

    This article was altered to show an extreme situation in which thousands of people commit suicide due to hearing of Michael Jackson’s death. The sad part is, although the article was exaggerated to “thousands” of deaths, a few people did indeed attempt to take their own lives after MJ died. Obsessing over a celebrity isn’t worth throwing your life away, and if we keep doing it, tragedies like this could occur. There are better things these people could have been doing with their lives than throwing it all away in tribute to someone who they didn’t even know.

  • Kenny Swam

    We edited a Youtube video of Solange Knowles and Jay Z fighting in an elevator. This is an example of celebrity obsessions because people are dedicated on figuring out why Solange is fighting with Jay Z. Even though it is none of their business, people find that it is their duty to know about this celebrity gossip. We changed the title of the video to show one of the reasons they could have been fighting. If this were a real video, people would be more keen to click on it because of how scandalous the gossip sounds.

  • Christy C.

    We edited an article about Ke$ha being drunk to saying that she went to rehab again. And we think this shows how obsession is bad due to them being a bad influence to our lives.

  • Guest

    There are positive effects on celebrity obsession such as Disney stars promoting and helping the planet to go green. It’s a good thing for Disney stars to promote going green and healthy lifestyles but it’s a negative effect on obsession when the role model they grew up with turns to a more mature audience, such as Miley Cyrus. Parents should also be helping this negative effect so their kids lives do not turn out for the worst. Parents should be keeping up with the celebrities that their children see as role models because they can turn into something for more a mature audience at any moment to stay famous.

    In this picture, we see and article of Selena Gomez saying that she is going to rehab. They make this picture look nice and they show her smiling to portray that she’s still a role model and she’s getting help. The picture we made shows the same, Selena in rehab, but a worse picture of her and how she needs a lot of help. This shows her, a once rolemodel, destroying herself with publicity. This shows how a role model can change at any moment therefore the parents must keep intact with what their kids are looking at.

  • Kendra

    Our group explored celebrity obsession and we said that it was very negative because of the way it can take total control over someones life. We used “Shrek is Love, Shrek is Life” to support this statement.

  • Asha

    There are positive effects on celebrity obsession such as Disney stars promoting and helping the planet to go green. It’s a good thing for Disney stars to promote going green and healthy lifestyles but it’s a negative effect on obsession when the role model they grew up with turns to a more mature audience, such as Miley Cyrus. Parents should also be helping this negative effect so their kids lives do not turn out for the worst. Parents should be keeping up with the celebrities that their children see as role models because they can turn into something for more a mature audience at any moment to stay famous.

    In this picture, we see and article of Selena Gomez saying that she is going to rehab. They make this picture look nice and they show her smiling to portray that she’s still a role model and she’s getting help. The picture we made shows the same, Selena in rehab, but a worse picture of her and how she needs a lot of help. This shows her, a once role model, destroying herself with publicity. This shows how a role model can change at any moment therefore the parents must keep intact with what their kids are looking at.

    • Chuck M.

      I support your thought on how parents should keep in touch with what there children are looking at on the web. Especially with celebrities because they seem to be very unpredictable lately. Also I believe it’s important for the youth to learn what is out on the web and learn how to use it appropriately. I really like how you are portraying your thoughts on celebrity obsession.

  • Henry Lin

    Justin Bieber is yet another example of a young performer turned rotten by their own fame and fortune. Girls and guys obsess over him and this might be the biggest contributor to his change. Celebrity obsession is a bad influence on our young and talented musicians. The obsession and fame over them cause them to do anything to attract attention they are so used to. We’ve changed this photo of young JB to a more recent and disturbing image where Justin Bieber is attacking a cameraman. This shows how his innocence has been dissolved since he has become a superstar and how our influence over them cause us to live through them and for them to make poor decisions in order to gain popularity.

    • Henry Lin

      said image

  • Tony P.

    We believe that celebrity obsession is bad for our youth. Young students look up at celebrities as a role model and so therefore if the role model does something bad then it will change the students mindsets to something that the celebrity did. For example, Justin Bieber has been a famous pop singer that the media obsesses over but he can be very rude just like many other celebrities. Although many love his voice, he has many illegal issues. He had reckless driving, smoked marijuana, and assaulted a limo driver. These examples show how following popular celebrities can cause a bad influence for our youth. Celebrity obsession is bad not only for our youth but also for the celebrities themselves.

    To show how celebrity obsession is bad, we made an exaggerated version of a news article about Justin Bieber tying his shoes, to show how the media will report on anything about celebrities to satisfy fans. The first picture is the original, the second is the one we made.

    • Tony P.

      Picture 1:

    • Tony P.

      Picture 2:

  • Annie, Freyja, and Zoya

    We believe that celebrity obsession is a negative thing in our society. One negative result of celebrity obsession is how quickly the public will turn against a celebrity. To show this, we took an article that shows Amanda Bynes looking very disheveled and chasing after her dog which had just gotten loose. The article shines a very negative light on Amanda reflecting the public’s negative view of Amanda Bynes right now. In the the second picture we re-captioned the article and changed the content of the articles to show what might have been said if the public was still in support of Amanda.

  • Saini

    Is celebrity obsession okay to the degree of taking hundreds of thousands of dollars to look like your celebrity obsession? It’s one thing to admire a celebrity, have posters of them, or go to their concerts or meet-ups, but it becomes a whole new extreme when you choose to look exactly like them. Half the time, it’s just the same clothes or hair-dos, but the other half (and more serious) takes hundreds of thousands of dollars in plastic surgery. Depression can result from the fatigue, stress, and lack of sleep from post-surgery. Plastic surgery can also cause headaches, nausea, vomiting, and prolonged pain. All in all, people should be comfortable with the way they look and not feel like they have to look like a certain person. Just because their most favorite celebrity in the world looks a specific way doesn’t mean they have to follow. Sometimes, celebrity obsession can get in hand and there is a price to pay.

  • Maya and Clare

    We think that if you have all this power, you can do good things with it, but more often that not you see people doing bad things with it. Following in the lead of celebrities can help or hurt our society. if a celebrity is a good role model, people will follow them but in the case of Britney Spears people have been following her bad example and getting involved in drugs and making other bad choices. Using hackasourus, we took an article talking about how Britney spears has gone crazy and changed it to say her fans have gone crazy to show the influence she has over them.

  • Maya and Clare

    It’s hard to know exactly. We think that if you have all this power, you can do good things with it, but more often that not you see people doing bad things with it. Following in the lead of celebrities can help or hurt our society. if a celebrity is a good role model, people will follow them but in the case of Britney Spears people have been following her bad example and getting involved in drugs and making other bad choices. Using hackasourus, we took an article talking about how Britney spears has gone crazy and changed it to say her fans have gone crazy to show the influence she has over them.

  • http://yahoo.com Zach and Shaizore

    Following celebrities obsessively is completely natural for teenagers. They need a role model to rely on, and celebrities give them a chance to follow someone they believe in. However it can be unhealthy to be totally obsessed in celebrities to the point of wanting to be exactly like them and following their every move.

  • Tori, Marissa, Br’Shawn, Erin

    Celebrity obsessions are bad because many times the fame gets to the celebrity and causes them to make poor decisions. Miley, Cyrus, Britney Spears, and many other celebrities have gone from great performers to drug addicts. They make poor decisions and their fans are the ones who look up to that. They will grow up seeing bad behavior and using drugs as a positive.

  • Evan S-D

    Justin bieber a teen pop star was arrested recently. He was charged with driving under the influence and street racing. Millions of children look up to him. These actions clearly show that Justin bieber is no longer a teen idle. While his original fan base grows with him there are still hundreds of thousands of younger and younger children that look up to pop stars such as Justin. With so many people re-enacting every move they do it is a terrible example to show them being arrested. Children might think it’s ok to do crime and be arrested or maybe that it’s cool to be arrested.

  • Julia

    Celebrity obsessions can sometimes be a good thing and sometimes they can be absolutely ridiculous and unhealthy. Being obsessed with someone like Oprah, Angelina and Brad Pitt, who is involved in a lot of charity work can be inspiring and help you improve your character and contribute to society. However, sometimes the most natural things become breaking news as if no one else has ever done it before. Celebrity obsession can also be unhealthy since we begin to fantasize about being part of the celebrity’s life, having their life, or actually being them. So instead of trying to set higher standards for themselves so they get stuck wishing they were someone they’re not.

  • collyn,mackenzie,elyssa annisa

    celebrity obsession is bad for us because people will go high measures to change themselves to be just like their idol. In our example on the bottom this girl look identical to Taylor swift in which she takes advantage of for publicity she could have went through anything to look like her

    • Renee

      I totally agree with you, celebrity obsession is being overly dramatic it is way too much, and people will go to the extreme just to be like their stars.

  • Gabe

    We believe that celebrity obsession is bad because not everything is released about them. Celebrities have all done something bad and horrible, but it isn’t always published or talked about. Magazines always talk about the good and great things that people of done, like Justin Bieber. Magazines idolize him, but never say the bad things.
    (or picture is above) it is of the justin bieber website.

    -Ram, Gabe, Josh, Miles

  • Gabe

    Here is Gabe, Ram, Miles, and Josh’s Picture

  • MM&P

    Celebrity obsession can have positive or negative effects on society. The kind of impact it has depends on the example the celebrity sets or activities they participate in. Many fans attempt to imitate the celebrity they favor or can be easily influenced by their actions. The idolatry of celebrities it mostly bad because people try to imitate the over exaggerated, twisted, inaccurate accounts of their behavior. Ordinary, everyday people often do similar things that celebrities also do. However, they get practically no recognition, whether positive or negative. In addition, celebrity lives are prioritized over ours, and things like marriages can occupy weeks of press time. Celebrity obsession is really quite pointless when there are better people to look up to than narcissistic celebrities unless they have good-natured morals or are considered to be a “good” role model.

  • Isabelle and Dave

    Celebrity obsession can be a good or bad thing, all depending on the celebrity spotlighted. We believe that some celebrities can become a hero, yet others can become a bad influence to the media. For example, some athletes may serve as good examples, such as Bethany Hamilton, a surfer who suffered a shark attack. She served as a symbol of perseverance and a role model to many. On the other hand, an example of a bad influence is Miley Cirus. She’s always the focus of the news, typically not in a good light.

    • Guest

      Bethany Hamilton

    • Joe

      I agree with that comment of celebrity obsession being a good and bad thing and it should be used for good reason and not bad.

  • kyle and zaid

    We hear a lot about how Celebrities think that they are all that and better than everyone, but what about the ones that give back to their community? Idolization of celebrities can be bad yes but not always. Tiger Woods is known for his huge scandal by cheating on his wife, or Lance Armstrong who used PEDs to help him perform. Did you know Tiger Woods has given over 10 million dollars back to his community and where he grew up? That’s one of top nine among famous athletes. Lance Armstrong has given back over 5 million over the past 10 years towards his Cancer awareness movement. He is also one of the top nine among famous athletes. We always hear the bad it seems more than the good. If you focus on what good a certain Celebrity does rather than the bad, why is that bad?

    • Jake

      That doesn’t matter people still over compelled by the celebs and the actions they do

  • LMN261118

    KQED Celebrity Obsession

    Miley Cyrus is good example of how celebrity obsession is bad. Her and many other popular celebrities often make bad decisions or demonstrate behavior that we tend not to encourage. Many young girls have looked up to her, and to this day they still idolize her.A lot of kids look up to her like she is still Hannah Montana. When in reality she is nothing like how she used to be. Miley Cyrus’s bad behavior affects how people see her, and could cause young children to see her rebellious behavior and think that it is ok. When people see celebrities doing these things like twerking it immediately starts trending through society. Having a celebrity Obsession can drastically influence your decisions and what you see as being acceptable behavior.

  • Alyssia

    Celebrity obsession is something that is different for everyone. We believe that having a celebrity to look up to, and have passion for a person is okay but when some people take there love and passion too far, then it becomes a problem. A celebrity obsession gets bad when a person decides to cut themselves for that celebrity or spends several thousand dollars to look like that certain celebrity. If you have someone who really inspires you and someone who you are always listening to or watching then that is just a simple obsession that doesn’t affect anyone in a bad way. Most people who have a celebrity obsession have a reason behind it such as they help that person get through a hard time or they inspire them to be a better person. A celebrity obsession doesn’t always have to be a bad thing.

  • Dani

    I am usually more captivated by the negative stories I hear. For example, when in college, I used to watch “The Bad Girls Club”. Now, to me, these people are not celebrities. They are craving attention. I wonder why I ever watched this. Now, I honestly believe I watched this because it would give me indirect feedback that I was doing just fine. My problems are on a minor scale compared to some of the issues that people we see on television etc. are dealing with. I think it is the same with celebrities. I like to follow the people who I admire and look up to, but in a sense I get gratification in knowing that we are all human. We make mistakes. I think it is healthy for knowledgable people to in a way… stay updated with celebrities, but I worry for those who look up to these people and emulate their every move… Justin Bieber…Kesha… Lindsay Lohan… yikes.

  • Malcolm

    In my opinion celebrity obsession is bad for us because a lot of people are greatly influenced by celebrity actions. No matter if their actions are positive or negative the fans that are that are truly obsessed will follow their actions ,because they are the most popular ones of social media.

  • lexy

    i agree celebrity obsession is bad because people will do anything for celebrities

  • Jake

    I think that kids or people can control there own actions so its not really there parents fault, its just the fact that the kids are crazy over celebrities and it can have an effect on there life because they eventually want to become the celeb.

  • Dean

    Celebrity obsession has its ups, and downs… It can be healthy if your looking at someone who is doing good with their life and staying away from drugs, and alcoholism as a role-model… however if you are looking up and mimicking the actions of a celebrity who abuses drugs and alcohol, it becomes unhealthy and begins to put your life at risk.

  • Anfernee

    this is bad. fans look up to them. miley cyrus and justin beiber are bad people to look up to. miley cyrus being dirty and doing drugs and justin beiber doing the same thing miley cyrus is doing. theres alot of kids looking up to them. soon your going to end up seeing little kids trying to be miley cyrus

  • Conner

    Celebrities vary from person to person. Yes there are quite a few “bad ones” but then again there are many that do good too. Celebrities seem to act how we (the normal people) portray them to be. Miley Cyrus was not bad at one point but when she started all of her shenanigans and people started noticing it progressively got worse and worse.

  • cannon

    Celebrities are nothing but overpaid, over popular, average people who we should not look up to. People go way too overboard with this and I believe that we all just need to relax.

  • Andrew

    Personally, I do not believe it is healthy for kids and teenagers to follow and know what a celebrity is doing every single day. The kids who look up online to see what they’re favorite celebrities are doing are wasting their time and life doing so. I don’t think it is bad to look online once in a while and see the top posts of what celebrities as a whole are doing, but if you single in on a single celebrity and online stalk them, that is wrong.

  • Tonatiuh

    Some people have been taking to far with following celebrities. Doing everything the celebrities do and trying to follow their path, which maybe extremely harmful to the followers. People think just because the celebrities do it it’s OK for them to do it as well, like smoking weed or doing other types of drugs. People need to stop over dramatizing for the celebrities.

  • Anthony

    I completely agree that celebrity obsession is getting out of hand. Being a little interested in celebrities is normal but some people are taking it to far and emulating bad decisions but there is no point in even talking about this because its not like it can be stopped. As long as entertainment exists the crazes will flock to celebrities.

  • jasmine

    I think its good in some ways but also bad because some celebs do bad things especially now a days.

  • Renee

    I believe that obsession with celebrities is really bad and they go way too far, people cut themselves, people shave their heads, they do drugs, and all kinds of drugs just to be exactly like their idol, and it’s really sad. For example Miley Cyrus has become a big part of children’s life as Hannah Montana and children still look up to her today and want to be exactly like her. Also another celebrity is Justin Bieber, girls drule over him and have too much obsession over him, when they cut themselves for him, and when he went to jail for doing something totally stupid they stood up for him. Like no can you stop now please k thanks.

  • Rosarianna

    I think its okay to look up to them. If your inspired to do the career they have it’s okay but, to be like them and to do the same actions as them isn’t right. If you think that the artist or actor or whoever inspires you, it’s okay. If they make you feel good about yourself it’s okay to see them that way.

  • Diego

    I believe that this is a matter that can be looked at in two different ways. For one people can follow peoples image and be a little star stuck i mean don’t get me wrong when you see your idol you freak out just a little bit. But, and this is number two you can look up to someone but,when you are totally copying their actions it’s just takes away who you are as a person and just makes you look like a follower,people are too good to be follower’s then need to understand that being yourself is the best thing.You can be just as good if not better that the person you look up to just do the right thing,be your own person and let them be your motivation for the goals you want to reach in life.

    • Dean

      well said Diego

    • Anthony

      I completely agree

  • Joe

    I believe that celebrity obsession is bad for us because many of us pay more attention to what new style of hair a celebrity got or what new pet they got. It is just a mess because many of us care about these little thing instead of being alert of whats happening in are backyard or around the world. I do agree with people looking up to celebrity for inspiration but for the right reasons.

    • Esperanza Ponce

      i agree!

  • bob

    This is all b.s., f*** TMZ and all the reporters celebrities should be able to live there life how they want without someone behind them with a camera.

  • Martha

    I think celebrity obsession is bad because some people take it to the extreme. For example they try to look and dress like them as if they were a celebrity.

  • suavecito

    I believe that not all celebrity obsession is bad. Some celebrities actually care about the rest of the world and try to make sure that they keep what they do private. Instead of uploading pictures when they are completely out of their senses like other individuals. It all depends on who you look up to and how that person is.

  • Jonathan

    Celebrity obsessions can be good and bad. It can be good because it can influence kids to be successful.It can also be bad because celebrities do bad things and fans follow in there foot steps thinking it cool cause their favorite celebrity is doing it.

  • Esperanza Ponce

    celebrity obsession is a huge issue and i think people should get over celebrities and get a life!!

  • clara

    I think celebrity obsession is bad because theirs kids that want to be so much like them so or would do anything just for them. For example Justin Bieber , his fans cut themselves just for him. Or sometimes it’s good because they could get makeup tutorials from them or latest fashion. So it’s like kinda in the middle.

  • JAVIER

    I think celebrity obsession is wrong i just don’t get why someone would obsess over a celebrity. They don’t know you and you don’t know them so why even care about where they are what they’re doing and who they’re doing it with. Its cool being a fan and everything but caring about what they do in their personal life makes no sense. Worry about your own self.

  • cheeseburger eddy

    i believe celebrity obsession can go both ways and what i mean by that is that every kid know matter who you are you want to be just like your favorite artis. but that doesn’t mean walking around with a attitude, sagging your pants like a moron, or even smoking like there doing. but you can go about it the right way and try not to be so obsess and just be a fan and just follow them on there blog or wright to them.

  • sebastian

    I believe celebrity obsession is good because little kids need someone to look up to when there parents aren’t in there lives.

    • Samoria

      I also agree with you ! kids should always have some type of guidance.

  • Tristan

    While some celebrity obsessions can have a positive effect on the public, the majority of these can be harmful. A prime example of this can be seen in the NFL, today’s most watched sport. With the off-season featuring more DUIs, arrests, and public disturbances than anyone in their right mind remember. As a result, creating a cycle of poor choices made by athletes that is emulated by the youth.

  • Rosa B

    In my opinion, i think that celebrirty obsession isn’t bad as long as you have limits.

    • octavio

      true true

    • Jordan Balabis

      I totally agree with you, because people could have celebrity obsessions as long as they do not take it too far, such as: young ladies cutting themselves for Justin Bieber. Now their action just for a famous person, was over exaggerated, ignorant, and highly over the limit. People should not inflict pain on or hurt themselves just for one or any celebrity, who does not actually care, know, or acknowledge them. Superstar fixations is not inferior, as long as individuals know not to go pass or extend beyond the maximum point.

  • Jose Y

    In my opinion, I think that its bad because people are cutting themselves for justin bieber and that is very dangerous

  • Estrella V.

    I think having a crazy celebrity obsession is bad because the person will only be about that celebrity. Luke on how the Believers were cutting for Bieber. I am a fan of him but girls that were cutting because he was doing drugs, I think that was very dumb of them. Sometimes big fan girls go way to far with that. Girls are crazy enough to do that.Estre

  • carlos

    I think that people are going to far with their obsession such as Justin Bieber and others. But other times it’s a good thing to do so at a limit such as if a celebrity is doing charity work than it’s a good thing to see what we can do or what’s happening. But personally to me it has gone to far because they need privacy too and we are ignoring that. What we need to do is stop or at least stop obsessing and start giving those people some space.

  • Braedon Evans

    I believe that our national obsession with celebrities is seriously ridiculous. Yes, these people are famous, but that doesn’t mean we should know everything about their lives. Part of them is public, but not all. I feel this is a detriment to society because we put so much emphasis on being popular or wealthy that we lose sight of what’s truly important. Having certain celebrities that you enjoy listening to, or watching play can be very entertaining and positive. When it goes so far that they become more important than doctors, for example, it’s stupid.

  • Hallie Campbell

    Celebrity obsessions can be damaging to the youth of today. By obsessing over famous people, it overlooks the “average” person. Young girls today look at models and obsess over getting their bodies to look like the models when it isn’t realistic. The obsession with celebrities enables unrealistic expectations in the youth today which leads to damaging self-esteems and other serious consequences.

  • jason marin

    i personally think no one should be obsessed with a celebrity at all. It makes no sense to obsess over someone you don’t know or don’t know anything about. You probably wont have any type of relationship with one so why be so obsessed? Being a fan of a celeb isn’t bad, but being obsessed is I think.

  • Julia Johnson

    I think that having a celebrity crush or something is okay, I mean, everyone obsesses a little bit when they find out about a new celeb. But its not okay to let how they act effect how you act. I know a lot of girls who have made obsessing over a band their life and they act and dress and talk just like them! It’s a little creepy and actually its very dumb to take obsessing to that extent. #DoKnowCelebrity