What is the Bloggerazzi?
The term bloggerazzi is a portmanteau of the words blogger and paparazzi. It refers to those websites or blogs devoted to delivering celebrity news items such as gossip, photos and videos.
Notable members of the Bloggerazzi include celebrity blogger, Perez Hilton, TheSuperficial.com and Dlisted.com. Certain members of the bloggerazzi, such as X17online.com and TMZ.com, employ a media team to deliver celebrity news items to the web. The teams may include photographers or paparazzi who film the celebrities, and web personnel who then post the content on the website. TMZ’s media team has also expanded to include a reality television show, which chronicles the daily process of TMZ photographers who capture celebrity footage and the office personnel who debate which content is suitable for the website.
The splashy headlines and terse commentary typical of a bloggerazzi website have often been compared to online print tabloids, such as The Enquirer or Star magazines. Unlike tabloids, the bloggerazzi have the advantage of offering same-day celebrity coverage, archived news items, and forums for reader interaction. As a result, many tabloids have capitalized on these trends by hosting their own websites to complement their newsstand content. In addition, many mainstream newspapers have implemented bloggerazzi-style celebrity gossip blogs into to their own official news sites.
Although it is difficult to police copyright infringement and defamation of character on the Internet, from time to time individuals or organizations will take action against stolen photos or libelous statements made by the bloggerazzi. In 2006, one of the bloggerazzi’s most notorious members, Mario Lavandeira, a.k.a. Perez Hilton, was sued for $7.5 million by a photo agency which claimed he had used their photos on his website without their permission. Bloggerazzi websites that feature “exclusive” content, such as photos of a celebrity’s baby from a special-edition print magazine, are often hit with cease and desist letters from the magazine or celebrity’s lawyer.
Some celebrities have attempted to combat the online innuendo made against them by the bloggerazzi by using the Internet for their own promotional purposes. Many celebrities use web 2.0 tools such as MySpace, Facebook, or their own blogs as a medium to connect with the public and clear up misconceptions directly.
Many members of the bloggerazzi invite a collaborative approach to their celebrity reporting by encouraging reader comments on their blogs or websites and inviting members of the public to send in photos or videos they have taken of celebrities. The website Gawker.com has employed a map called the Gawker Stalker to track the whereabouts of celebrities using tips sent in by members of the public.
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