When Is It Considered Appropriate To Take Pictures Of Celebrities?

September 7, 2013
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When is the appropriate time or place to take pictures with, or of, your favorite celebrity? Celebrities are people too, right? But does having their privacy taken away from them come as part of the job? What exactly is their job?

Take a music artist, they are meant to entertain our ears, and sometimes our eyes. They produce music for us to relate to, they perform at concerts and award shows, they create short videos to their music for their fans. How about an actor or actress? They too are entertainers; they put on a show behind a camera so that we can watch them and enjoy what they have produced from behind the big screen. Even a TV show host is up on a stage performing, keeping the audience engaged. But does being famous mean that they are expected to give up all privacy, to constantly take pictures with fans, to let people take pictures of them?

If you see your favorite celebrity at the club, out to dinner with their families or shopping at the mall is it disrespectful to ask them for a picture? Or is it better to take a picture of them at a distance? Maybe the answer is that neither of these options is necessarily correct. Sure it may be cool to see a celebrity in person, but they are humans like you and me. Do you like it when someone interrupts your conversation? Do you like when friends take candid pictures of you at parties when you are not looking? We have the ability to control the majority of the pictures that get posted of us on social media. If we do not like how we look, if our eyes are shut, our mouth is open, or we look “fat,” we can at the least un-tag ourselves from that photo, or even ask for it to be removed. Celebrities do not have this luxury. They have photos taken of them around the clock, every day of the year, and yet it is impossible for them to get even a small percent of the unpleasant images taken down. They are constantly caught in awkward positions and making all sorts of faces and yet these photographs are spread all over the internet. They are humans, not some exhibit at a museum.

So now the question lies, when is it okay to take a picture? Say you are in Vegas at the Billboard awards and you happen to run into Justin Bieber at his hotel. Yes, he is in town for work, but is he working at that moment? Or maybe you run into Miley Cyrus at the airport while she is on her way to promote new music, is that considered work related?

Here is how I see it. If they are not in the moment doing their job, doing what they are in that city, at that particular time, there to do, then they are not working and we should not disturb them. When they are walking the grounds of a concert venue, walking a red carpet, or performing, then yes, pictures and videos are almost always expected to be taken. But when these celebrities are out and doing what any normal person does, we should allow them to in that moment feel normal and give them the space and respect that they deserve. Just because someone enjoys performing or acting or whatever it may be, it does not mean that they should have to sign away every moment of their life, their personal time, their privacy.  Everyone deserves to be treated with respect.

-Xay P. @xashasuree

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