By Shane McGinley
Why do we click on them when we know we hate them so much, wonders Shane McGinley?
"Infamy! Infamy! They've all got it in for me!" Kenneth Williams' famous gag from 1964’s Carry On Cleo was voted the funniest comedy line by a survey of 1,000 comedians back in 2007, but whenever I think of today’s stock of D-List reality TV stars it always reminds of it.
The likes of the Kardashians, the Hilton sisters, the ‘stars’ of TOWIE (if it you don’t know what that stands for then lucky you) or singers like Lady Gaga, their lives are constantly on the front of the cheap tabloids, Instagram, Twitter and every possible social medium available.
Infamy is described as “the state of being well known for some bad quality or deed.” The Kardashians, and Kim in particular, truly live up to that name as Kim only became famous after the release of a private video hit the internet, while previously she was simply known as a stylist and friend of Paris Hilton, who herself rose to fame when a private video of her was leaked online. (It makes you wonder how long before a video staring a minor Kardashian cast member emerges and the cycle spirals onwards and downwards).
The family have caused pandemonium in The Dubai Mall when they appeared to open a milkshake store, packed out a restaurant when they went for lunch in Downtown, hosted parties at the Abu Dhabi F1 and filmed their TV show in Atlantis on the Palm.
But they have truly moved beyond being just famous to a whole new type of fame. People love hating them and even those who despise them click on stories about them, look at their pictures and then get angry and comment about how much they hate them.
To see this in action, this week we posted the latest pictures released of Kim in Dubai, which she posted on her Instagram and Twitter pages from her trip here last year. The gallery was not highlighted prominently on our homepage but just posted as a link on Facebook. By the end of the day the story had about four times as many views as the average story on Arabian Business and was only equalled by a big business story on Dubai’s plans to introduce 100 percent ownership for companies.
It also got over 31 comments, most of which were negative. Only the Kardashians seem able to generate such vitriol and massive interest in equal measure. It makes you wonder why if people hate them so much do they gorge on all information to do with them and then feel so much hate afterwards.
Former White House intern Monica Lewinsky knows all about infamy and scandal after her affair with former US President Bill Clinton. However, she is now striving to educate people about social media and how best to use it.
In a recent TEDTalk, titled ‘The Price of Shame’, Lewinsky spoke about having her life dissected and pulled apart by the media circus.
“With every click we make a choice,” says Lewinsky. She is right, we all have a choose whether or not to read something online. In a world where you have remote controls to switch channel, a scroll button to scroll past, a delete button for emails or a reject button for calls, why do people still get so angry?
Why don’t people just choose to not click on the latest Kardashians pictures, especially when they know it is only going to make them angry?
With the family recently signing a $100 million deal to continue their TV series, they are the ones laughing all the way to bank while others fume about how much they loathe them.
As an aside, for those who may have been interested, click here for a list of the other famous comedy lines that were voted among the best.