Fame and fortune are arguably the top perks of being a celebrity. That said, such perks often come with the cost of privacy, especially nowadays when just about everyone can snap pictures or video with their phones. To make matters even worse, the Internet is crawling with the latest news media and celeb gossip on which anyone, from fans to haters, can share and have an opinion, spreading scandals and rumours like wildfire.
But are famous people really treated unfairly by the media and the public? According to a survey from PlayOJO, some Brits certainly seem to think so. In fact, several of the famous faces who made PlayOJO’s survey of the top 10 most unfairly treated people of 2018, had their names – and sometimes their private lives – dragged through the mud by the media.
Ryan Thomas and the “punch gate” debacle
Ryan Thomas, who was ranked in the survey as the second most unfairly treated person in 2018, was convinced that his career was over after Roxanne Pallett falsely accused him of punching her on Celebrity Big Brother (CBB).
To make matters worse for the ex-Coronation Street actor, he initially had no idea that she had told others in the CBB house that he had purposely punched her, following a play flight in which Thomas never actually touched her. This led to the show (and Thomas) receiving a record number of complaints.
Thomas, who went on to win CBB, revealed later that it wasn’t until he realized the other CBB housemates were purposely isolating him that something was wrong. When he found out of what Pallett had accused him, he was emotionally distraught over the idea that he had somehow hurt her and thought that his career was over.
In the end, Pallett did reveal she was “mistaken” and suffered her own media backlash for the lie. As for Thomas, he went on to win the show.
The media loves to hate Donald Trump
U.S. President Donald Trump is another person on the top 10 most unfairly treated people of 2018 list and there’s no question that the media loves to shred him, the First Lady and his family.
From his relationship with his wife and his daughters to his successive scandals and sometimes ludicrous declarations, the media has had a field day with Trump, easily painting him in a rather unflattering light. Yet, unlike other celebs who seem to eventually crack under the media’s negative scrutiny, Trump doesn’t cave to the haters and is quick to defend himself, even when members of the Republican Party, and his own family, don’t.
For instance, during Trump’s speech to the Coast Guard Academy in Connecticut, he complained about the media, saying: “Look at the way I’ve been treated lately, especially by the media. No politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly.”
Whilst Trump’s statement isn’t exactly true as the media has ripped apart politicians before him and will continue to do so long after, the media will no doubt continue to mercilessly expose his scandals and take shots at him a long the way.
The news media is bias against Jeremy Corbyn
On more than one occasion the British media, most notably the BBC, has been accused of having an anti-Corbyn bias. Although the leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, receives about as much flack as any political party leader, research by the London School of Economics published in 2016 found that 75% of press coverage misinterpreted Corbyn.
Moreover, back in the summer of that same year, Media Reform Coalition researchers concluded that the BBC’s main evening news reports gave twice as much unchallenged airtime to those who were critical of the Labour leader compared to his allies.
Corbyn ranked as the survey’s third most unfairly treated person of 2018. As for the other famous people who made the top 10 list, these included professional tennis player Naomi Osaka; professional racing cyclist Geraint Thomas; TV personality, singer and author Collen Nolan; Olympic gold medallist and middle-distance runner Caster Semenya; professional footballer Raheem Sterling; Reality TV series star Laura Anderson; and Prime Minster Theresa May, who ranked first.
Ultimately, regardless of whether or not you believe that these or any other celebrities were/are treated unfairly by the media, the bottom line is that celebrities – no matter how famous, infamous or spotlight-loving they are – have a right to privacy like everyone else. That said, we do love a good scandal, don’t we?