Pleasing the Eye

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I’d like to take this opportunity to talk about something we haven’t talked about much this semester: celebrity news.  This is the stuff more of magazines but in most newspapers there is a section dedicated to the most newsworthy of the rich and famous. 

On the main page for the New York Times towards the bottom there is/was a story featuring a relatively new star, Megan Fox.  Any time I see anything about Fox I can’t help but look.  First of all, she’s absolutely (I’m convinced) the most gorgeous star let alone person in the world.  She has a certain mystery about her that makes her 100% intriguing.  She, as the article says, got her big brake starring in Transformers but this article expresses a concern that her stardom may wear off because females may be unwilling to accept her oversexed publicity. 

Fox is also known for her quotability.  She says things that you would not expect such a pretty woman to say which I will not repeat on my blog.  Check out this link and you will see.  But the thing that I am primarily concerned with is the use of multimedia that accompanies this story.  It is especially important to the story because one of the most newsworthy things about Fox is the fact that she is beautiful.  She and a short list of other celebrities like Tom Welling and maybe Brad Pitt seem to be the epitome of near perfect human form.  To show the reader this there is a slide show to accompany the story.  If you didn’t know what she’s done in her career or what she looks like you’ll definitely see through this slide show of 18 pictures. 

There is also a video featuring Fox about half-way down the page.  The New York Times filmed her answering some interview questions.  It's nice to see her actually answer the questions as opposed to just reading her answers.  You get to hear her voice inflection and see her mannerisms.  You can also see the fact that she is very self-conscious in front of a camera, an interesting thing when you consider just how beautiful she is. 

The ability of web news stories to have videos and slide shows accompany the text is really where the internet eclipses the written word.  Where the newspaper would not have the room to dedicate to 18 photos of a starlet, online does.  And obviously a newspaper cannot feature videos.  It's all about giving the valuable information and pleasing the eye.  There is an element of choice about the online news that makes it appealing.  Being a person who is interested in people and psychology, I immediately gravitate to people like Fox who are beautiful yet seem shy because of self-consciousness.

 

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4 Comments

Greta Carroll said:

Angela, I like how the thing you chose to blog on included a slideshow, video clips, and an article. You hit on pretty much everything. And I must say, you got me curious enough that I watched the video interview with Megan Fox too. And I agree with you, the interview makes her seem a lot more intelligent and a lot more personable. It humanizes her. Instead of only having pictures of her posing provocatively, or having an article with a list of her accomplishments or quotes she has said (which have the possibility of being taken out of context), you have the real words from her mouth with her expressions. We can judge for ourselves what her intentions were and what her tone was. The NY times has an interesting merging of print news and media journalism. I really like how point out these things would only be possible on the internet. It really would be impossible to devote so much time of space in an actual newspaper. The internet allows the consumer to get more of what they want.

Angela Palumbo said:

Thanks, Greta. You are right. The video more than anything makes her seem more human. We're used to seeing Fox on TV or in movies. It's nice to just see her talk. I'm still having a hard time getting over the way she seems so bashful. In her movies she portrays confidence almost perfectly but she has insecurities, too. Online news has so many features that the printed news cannot have.

Josie Rush said:

I'm glad you linked to that site, Angela. When you mentioned in class that there was a video that made Megan Fox seem camera-shy, my interest was sparked. I've read a few interviews with Fox, and none of the interviewers really portray her in a flattering way (there are references to her being late for the interviews in, like, every article I've read, for example). Even in the article you link to here, the writer isn't doing Fox any favors. But the video was her saving grace. She came across more human and a little wary of the camera. It was odd, but after that article (the girl can sure give some interesting quotes), it was refreshing.
Oh, and couldn't agree more about Tom Welling.

Aja Hannah said:

I think that what you said here could really be used more in magazine websites. Many are interested in celebrities and, you're right, people want to see the person answering questions rather than rereading what they said. TMZ does a good job with this, but what about Cosmo. When they get interviews to put in their magazine, they could upload the footage also. Then again, people would go online for free to see the answers rather than buy the magazine.

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