Paparazzi a necessary ‘evil’ or just plain wrong?

The debate over whether the tactics used by paparazzi is ethical rages on, and in the film industry, the lucrative practice has gone overboard on many occasions.

What the paparazzi do achieve in wondrous ways is to get controversy on camera, but most often at the expense of their subject, and their safety. The flip-side to that coin is that celebrities should expect it because they are in the public spotlight. Lady Gaga for one uses them as a tool to promote her artistry. Film stars like George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie frequently get mobbed at festivals and elsewhere, but the practice does have a dangerous edge to it. Is all promotion good?

I want to take you back to 2007 when George Clooney slammed a paparazzi chase that nearly caused him to crash his motorcycle. That was a close call. Or how about 10 years beforehand, when Princess Diana was killed fleeing paparazzi that clearly broke the speed limit to get pictures of her in 1997. Many critics argue till this day, that princess Diana would still be alive if the paparazzi hadn’t chased her.

What brings me to raise this issue again is the fact that there is a growing demand for news on the go. People want to get the latest gossip, scandal, exclusive pics and so on via their phones, ipads etc, and those who can deliver that content are the paparazzi.

It is unfortunate that the very definition of ‘paparazzi’ has such a bad reputation when there are respectful photographers out there who are doing a great job in a dignified manner. Safety and mortal ethics should play a part when people take pictures of others and making money shouldn’t involve punishing liberties of those you don’t know.

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