What a Nice Guy by Phil Torcivia

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Are you aware of newsjacking?

The latest trend in the media is for celebrities to hijack the news. As soon as something breaks and trends, the hype whores spring to action. I'm not disrespecting those who do this. I realize how important it is to run in front of spotlights when the opportunity arises. You may have been unaware of this practice but, after perusing my prose, that should change.

Here's a recent example:

Jeremy Lin is an Asian-American NBA player who, when given a chance to start, excelled and created a buzz around sports fans. It's the popular plot of an underdog rising to greatness. People, especially men, eat it up.

In an effort to ride the media wave and hijack the story, Floyd Mayweather (boxing great) tweeted:

"Jeremy Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he's Asian. Black players do what he does every night and don't get the same praise."

What Floyd tweeted was partially true because there are few Asian superstar basketball players, and oddities are hype-worthy. Most of what he tweeted was horse dookie as nobody could overlook the praise Kobe and Lebron get. Dana White, UFC president called him on it (and re-hijacked the hype):

"First of all, what [Mayweather] said, I think, is racist. He's made a couple of racist comments. And yes, Floyd, you're racist with the stuff that you've said."

So, the newsworthy item that deserves media attention and the eyes of the fans is Lin's sensational rise. That story is diminished as Mayweather and White create a controversy. I'm so jaded about the media at this point, I wouldn't be surprised to find out those two camps choreographed everything.

The Donald does this constantly and, in my opinion, usually makes a total ass of himself. When Sacha Baron Cohen dumped Bisquick on Ryan Seacrest at The Oscars, Trump tried to hijack the story saying Cohen (which he intentionally mispronounces "Cone") should have been "punched in the face ... and the security guard that was standing to the right — he ought to be fired immediately." Trump is aware that Cohen is a comedian, and he's aware that Seacrest was most-likely in on the gag since he had another jacket waiting.

This week, blubbering boob Rush Limbaugh tried to hijack a story by referring to Sandra Fluke (Georgetown law student denied the right to speak at a congressional hearing on contraception) as "a slut" and "a prostitute." He also intentionally mispronounced her name. The next day he added, "if we're going to pay for your contraceptives and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch."

This story was then re-hijacked by Rachel Maddow at MSNBC who called Rush a "dummy" who doesn't "understand how babies are made, let alone how people can have sex without making a baby."

It was also hijacked by our commander-in-chief as Obama called Sandra Fluke to commend her willingness to speak out and share her dismay over the slur.

And, indeed, I am attempting to hijack those stories by blogging about them.

You can join in the fun by catching the breaking news and making it about you. Here's my effort around today's news:
  • Twister Destroys Town - I don't think they were following the rules of the game. Jesus. Right Foot Red. How hard is that?
  • Teacher Leaves Family for Student - Think of all the money her parents will save on tutors.
  • Gold Found in Bering Sea - Meh. I can only afford to wear aluminum nowadays.
  • YouTube "Am I Pretty?" Tween is Really an Adult - Yes! I mean, to the adult part. OK, she's kind of cute too. I wish she'd make her bed.
  • Stylist says J.Lo didn't play peek-a-boob at Oscars - What?! God damn it. You mean I whacked off to wardrobe tape? This is a preposterous. I demand a do-over!

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