[FEATURE] MEDIA BRAWL – WHEN WILL IT END?

Features

We’ve all seen the stories, paparazzi becoming aggressive in order to get their stories and all in the name of money. Following celebrities endlessly and provoking them until they lash out. This is something that is a known tactic for the paparazzi to use because these stories will sell and everyone wants to hear news of a celebrity behaving badly. In recent events we’ve seen Louis Tomlinson, a former One Direction member being involved in a physical altercation with one photographer at an Los Angeles airport due to the photographer refusing to stop taking pictures of his girlfriend Eleanor Calder after he declined Tomlinsons request to stop and give them privacy. During this one on one drama,Calder was in another brawl with two unidentified females, Tomlinson then saw this and tried to separate the women and is heard to have shouted ‘What the hell is going on’.

ImageThe public have seemed to have come emotionally immune to these stories as they happen all the time. Seeing viral videos with the infamous ‘TMZ’ watermark in the corner is something that crops up on social media almost weekly, many viewers jumping to comment on who was in the wrong during these Celebrity – Paparazzi showdowns. Paparazzi have built themselves a reputation within the media as being aggressive and have done nothing to change this, instead they have embraced this label, showing everyone that they will go to great lengths in order to get their story.

Tomlinson is clearly not the only one to be involved in such altercations, there have been many celebrities before him who have been targeted. Back in 2013, Paparazzi were a little too eager to get photos of Justin Bieber leaving his London hotel. There was an altercation of words, with one paparazzo member shouting ‘Go the fuck back to America you moron’, and with this remark being heard, Bieber was filmed jumping from the car, being held back by his security, giving that particular man a piece of his mind. This isn’t his first altercation with paparazzi and undoubtedly not his last.

A well documented paparazzi incident was in fact Britneys Spears’ ‘Meltdown’ back in 2007. Paparazzi captured the footage and photographs of Spears shaving her head and then trashing a car. The paparazzi presence was making her more upset, causing her to them attack a paparazzo (who in a weird turn of events, is auctioning off the umbrella, and willing to give half the money to a charity of Britneys choice). News reports surrounding this incident did mention that the paparazzi knew that something wasn’t right, yet still continued to pursue the story. This is one of the most famous moments captured by the paparazzi and can still be considered ‘relevant’ 10 years later.

Is there a line between lashing out and self defense? Why is it different for a celebrity to defend themselves than a regular person? Stories can become minipulated by the press in order to sell more copies with no regard to personal feelings, and the effect of the press’ aggressive behaviour can take it’s toll on musicians, this is something that needs to change.

Words by Jasmine Greggory

JUSTIN BIEBER WALKS OFF STAGE IN MANCHESTER

News

As you may know Justin Bieber has had his fair few tantrums and stage walk-offs and to be honest, they used to be fucking hilarious. But since Bieber’s music has matured, was his latest walk off justified or was it just another ridiculous outburst to add to his list. His walk off was caused by the audience not obeying his wishes of two minutes of not screaming whilst he was trying to speak to them, Bieber walked off the stage momentarily and did return to finish his set but there was no more audience interaction.

Speaking to a member of the audience who was at his other Manchester concert who said

“I understand why he walked off as the crowd were not respecting him, he asked for a couple minutes of none screams and they kept going, he was very interactive and was nice to our crowd.”

It does seem a bit petty to walk off stage, although a source has said he did ask some girls if they were in the same room as him (just them and him) would they still be screaming in his face. It adds perspective and if all he ever does is get screamed at then I can understand the frustration. Admittedly I think that Justin dealt with it rather well, he didn’t ‘storm off’ as the tabloid would make you believe, he simply acknowledged the fact that the majority of his fans don’t really give a shit about what he has to say and so he just came on and carried on with his songs. He can also afford to rent a £4.5 million mansion in Cheshire for the Northern part of his England tour and I’d take a lot more shit that just people screaming in my face to walk away from that.

Although this scenario was blown completely out of proportion, Bieber has caused a bit of a fury off the stage by driving on the wrong side of the road with his convoy of range rovers, swerving into the wrong lanes into oncoming traffic in a small Cheshire town. So it turns out you still can’t take Bieber anywhere without at least a bit of controversy.

 

Words by Jonny Page

[FEATURES] WHERE DO YOU DRAW THE LINE BETWEEN BEING A FAN AND HAVING AN OBSESSION?

Features

As everyone knows, fans can be crazy, but how crazy? And why do they feel the need to be this way? We have all heard crazy stories of what lengths fans will go to regarding their idols, but when do you cross the line from being a fan to becoming a stalker? It seems to be a very common factor with young, good looking boybands.

In recent years fan culture has changed and grown, especially regarding bands and artists like Justin Bieber and One Direction. Yes, I know, male singers and boybands have always gained a large, dedicated fanbase, I mean, look at The Beatles, for god’s sake! However, times have changed and so has the things some fans do… Justin Bieber’s fans have self harmed in the name of Bieber because he was caught smoking a joint, which is very normal behaviour for a 19 year old boy. Not only did they self harm, the fans tweeted pictures with the hashtag “Cut For Bieber” showcasing it to the whole world. Even though in 2013 this was an extremely serious issue, Bieber never put out a statement about it, not even one tweet. This is very eye-opening and worrying considering a large amount of his fan base were very young at the time. Shortly after Bieber was branded ‘irresponsible’ in the press and by multiple celebrities.

 

 

But it wasn’t just Bieber’s fans who crossed the line. When Zayn Malik left One Direction for personal reasons, five suicides were allegedly reported. Yes, five young people appear to have killed themselves because of his departure from the world famous X Factor band. Madness, I know, but absolutely devastating that these young girls felt that was the only thing they could do in response to the his departure.

 

After speaking to a lot of people regarding the One Direction mania, it is clear that it is insane and a lot to handle for the boys. Zayn has already cracked under pressure and left, and the rest of the band are soon to follow. One Direction plan to take a two year hiatus after five years of non stop mayhem and they definitely deserve it; let’s hope when the day comes, all the fans will take it well.

 

1d fan

A 1D super fan and her memorabilia

 

Laura, a fan from North London. expresses her opinion on the matter; “I feel that it’s a bit drastic and extreme but for them to have gone to that extent they must have had encountered psychological issues in the past I guess?’’ Laura claims to have met 1D 25-30 times and revealed to me that, “at meet ups, girls would get jealous if the lads didn’t speak to them first or if they spent more time with other groups”. So maybe this was a last cry to gain attention from the band along with other issues.

 

But at what point does it actually start becoming a life or death situation? Obsessive fans gain such an attachment that it physically/mentally hurts them and sends them into a breakdown, but on the other hand a lot of fans thank bands and artists for their music and believe that it saved their lives. “I just want to thank them for being them and the great music they have put out. I want to tell them how much they mean to me and how they have genuinely saved my life.’’ Honestly stated one fan. “One Direction have saved my life because I am diagnosed with severe anxiety and moderate depression and whenever I’m sad or not feeling right I rely on their music for support”. The fan continued, confessing that for her 1D help her cope with her mental illnesses.

 

However can being so infatuated with a idol cause these mental illnesses? Pop music fan, Aiden, who has overcome depression before says,“I think being part of this kinda of fandom at a young age can cause mental illnesses because you’re too busy living in a fake world where everyone you look up too is perfect, you need to concentrate on your-self. Whatever drastic lengths you go to for your idol, it will never be enough, it can only end badly with any obsession”

 

Laura opened up to me about how easy it is to get sucked into the fan culture when you are 14, 15, 16 years old and how competitive the fandom is. As a by stander, I was under the impression that it is like a family and very close knit, well apparently not. “With One Direction it is really bad and confrontational with other fans and there is definitely a jealousy thing, girls would stare you out and think they were above you because they have liked them longer or met them more times. It was crazy’’. But now I think about it, it’s not that shocking, Directioners are well known for the abuse they throw about online especially on Twitter. Online stats show that 95% of this abuse is done by young, female fans. “I swear if you do anything bad to Niall, we will kill you. I’m not kidding”. This is just one of many tweets posted when any band member goes public with a girlfriend or is even seen with another female. The fan base is extremely protective and clearly feel an attachment to the boys.

 

justin bieber

Canadian singer Justin Bieber

 

I recently got the chance to speak to 16 year old Julia from New Jersey USA, who has followed the band for four years now since they broke America. “I became a major fan in 2011 on the boy’s first year anniversary, I saw people posting online about it and I looked them up and got hooked within an hour from youtube videos and such”. Social media has helped One Direction take the world by storm. Julia is now also a administrator for a 1D fan account on Twitter, which has a huge 100,000 followers and are very efficient, constantly tweeting about what the band is doing every single day.

 

It’s clear that many of hardcore fans like Julia invest a lot of time and energy into the band, but more than anything, her money, “I have slept out on the streets of New York City for 12 hours for them and I have paid over the course of four years over two thousand dollars in ticket expenses’’.  This is a rather extreme measure for anyone around age of 16 to take, and must be classed as an obsession. She is investing into the band at such an extent and I’m guessing ‘no’ was never an option for her parents.

 

A lot of dedicated fans would attend meet and greets or find out where the band were and wait outside for them. I see nothing wrong with this, you have to expect things like this when you’re enormously famous. However the security did not have the same opinion, “Security would say to us that everyone has to pick up one piece of litter off the ground, otherwise i am not bringing the band out,” claimed Laura who had admitted to meeting 1D 25-30 times. She then carried on to describe to me some of the things the security did;

“Security told everyone to line up on the side walk, and the band came out, everyone started screaming, Paul the security guard started shouting at everyone to stay on the side walk and told us we could only get a picture of Harry, then Harry asked him why they can get a picture with him. The Security were horrible.”

 

Laura told me quite a few stories of security pushing and shoving fans who could be as young as 13 years old. Certain guards have apparently taken advantage of some female fans who were trying to get close to the band. “Scary and power mad” is how she described the security and felt that she had to personally try to stay out of their way. So where do you draw the line between being a fan and having a full blown obsession?

This completely depends on the type of person you are. If you are spending every waking moment obsessing over the band and its effecting your quality of life by putting the band before yourself and missing out on real life, you certainly do have an obsession.

 

You can’t stereotype all of these fans as one big crazy bunch. Yes, some fans genuinely believe they are going to marry Harry Styles one day – even though they’re not even legal for another three years – but everyone is different and has overcome obstacles through life, so if being a bizarre fan makes you happy and helps you, and doesn’t effect your day to day life, then go for it.

 

Words by Lydia Smedley 

[TRACK REVIEW] CHVRCHES – WHAT DO YOU MEAN (JUSTIN BIEBER COVER)

Music Reviews

The year is 2015. Justin Bieber is actually writing good songs. How? Why? No one knows, though it does make way for a lot of interesting covers. There are no real surprises here: Chvrches sound like, well, Chvrches, but then again, is that a bad thing? The band has been consistently great at recording covers, and this is no exception. Although the original song took itself a bit too seriously, their version is fun yet soulful. It sounds like an existential crisis at a house party. Though that isn’t a great situation, it makes for a great song.

Stream the cover below:

Words by Jillian Blandenier