news stories about lifestyle

Entertainment news is considered “soft news” and encompasses news stories about lifestyle, arts, culture, and celebrity. According to media researcher Thomas Patterson, soft news, which tends to be more sensational and personality-centered, has increased significantly in recent decades in response to a reduction in consumer interest in hard news. Entertainment news is delivered in a variety of mediums, such as celebrity magazines (e.g., People, Entertainment Weekly), and tabloids (e.g., National Enquirer), television news reports and shows, radio, and more recently social media and blogs.

Illegal Methods for the “Art of Entertainment” Because there is such a high desire for original and interesting entertainment news stories and photographs, competition in this genre is fierce. Unfortunately, some media sources have responded to the issue of a finite amount of available celebrity news by running stories filled with rumors, half-truths, and outright falsities. Most consumers presume a certain amount of innuendo and conjecture in celebrity stories, particularly with tabloid publications.

Spying and Stalking A key tool for celebrity coverage involves spying and stalking, often with impunity. Celebrity reporters have been known to hide in trees, rummage through celebrities’ trash, and lurk outside known celebrity hangouts. More recent forms of spying involve cybersleuthing—where celebrity reporters monitor a celebrity’s social media accounts, or in extreme cases hack a celebrity’s e-mail, text messages, or voicemail. Extreme cases of stalking also involve paparazzi staking out celebrities’ homes, their children’s schools, restaurants and hotels, and then chasing the celebrity, at times forcing a confrontation. The opening case study is an example of what can go wrong when paparazzi operate outside of any ethical or legal framework.

Historically, many celebrities complained about the celebrity reporter scene, but put up with the excesses with resignation. Many believed that to be stalked by reporters was just a part of the life of a high-profile celebrity. But some high-profile cases, including the tragic deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed, caused celebrities and the public, including law enforcement and the courts, to crack down on such illegal activities.

“Big Brother” One of the most notable cases of cell phone hacking involved the News of the World, the former tabloid paper owned by international media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. The scandal, which came to be known as the News international telephone hacking scandal, involved the newspaper hiring private investigators to hack into the cell phones of at least 70 people, some in the British Royal family.

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