Wednesday 21 March 2018

High-profile, highly paid gigs have a payback price

Ryan Tubridy has been around long enough to know that publicity is a double-edged sword, writes Emer O'Kelly

YOU can't help feeling sorry for Ryan Tubridy. Apparently, he has just split up with his girlfriend, and understandably wishes that the split was not the material of which newspapers make their headlines.

Everybody has a right to privacy. Anonymous, private people who do not have lives which feature in any way in newspaper paragraphs, much less in front-page headlines, usually manage to preserve their privacy and their anonymity. After that, privacy and the right to it start to splinter in numerous ways.

Public people who behave with dignity, good manners, and restraint feature in newspapers, but are seldom exploited by them. (Ryan Tubridy fits into this category.) Public figures who behave badly in any way from appearing drunk in public, engaging in brawls, or indulging in behaviour which could be interpreted loosely by people maliciously inclined as brawls, who give interviews about their private lives, who exploit their tenuous connections with genuine celebrities, and who strip for the cameras at the drop of a knicker, get the publicity they seem to revel in.

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