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Opinion: Celebrities Have a Right To Private Lives

Celebrities are a vital part of the social hierarchy that makes up almost all first-world countries. They garner tremendous amounts of media coverage and public recognition, often for a specific talent or occupation they hold, such as singers or actors and also end up accumulating a lot of wealth based on their ranking and popularity. However, while being famous, wealthy, and having a lot of attention sounds like a dream, it often comes at a tremendous cost.

Celebrities have almost no privacy and are surrounded by the taunts of society. The media and the general public analyze every single action that a celebrity commits, and that scrutiny increases with the popularity of the celebrity. Celebrities are still people and should be allowed basic personal freedom without being constantly bombarded by the public and paparazzi; they are entitled to have private lives without interference from mass media.

Privacy is a fundamental human right, as stated by the United Nations’ Declaration of Human Rights. Even though many popular celebrities are aware that becoming famous means that they will be under the public eye, it is unfathomable to imagine all of one’s public affairs being posted on the internet for everyone to read. It does not mean that one is open for more criticism, but it means a celebrity is put in far more danger than the average person due to the fact that almost all of their personal information is being sought after.

Those whose full-time jobs are to seek celebrities’ photos and personal information as the celebrities go about their daily routines are known as the paparazzi. However, that is not all that paparazzi do. They search for the smallest bit of information about celebrities without any regard for personal space or even the law. They have been known to trespass, an act that the paparazzi are legally prohibited to do, sneaking into celebrities’ houses and backyards and following them the moment they step out of their house.

Often, celebrities hide from the paparazzi by disguising themselves or simply running away, but there have been instances where trying to run has resulted in a celebrity’s harm or death. During a trip to Paris, France, Princess Diana, a member of the British Royal family, attempted to flee a horde of paparazzi with her driver, her companion Dodi Fayed, and bodyguard in the back. Their attempt to escape resulted in the car crashing into a tunnel. While some photographers attempted to help, quite a few stood there and took pictures of Princess Diana and her companions dying. Worst of all, they also blocked the way for paramedics to save them. Several hours later, everyone except Diana’s bodyguard had been pronounced dead. Although not every instance is as fatal as Princess Diana’s, most encounters with the paparazzi result in some type of personal information being leaked, many without the consent of the aforementioned celebrity.

More recently, co-stars Tom Holland and Zendaya’s personal photos were released without their permission. The two were photographed kissing in a car, and although the two had been rumored to be a couple, nothing had been confirmed till the pictures were released. In a recent interview, Holland and Zendaya elaborated on the downsides of their relationship being open to the public. They said that the pictures were released without their consent, and they were blindsided when the information went public. Holland said that he and Zendaya felt they had been robbed of their privacy after the images surfaced online before explaining that they had not intended to go public with their relationship at that stage in the romance. It was unfair for their pictures to have been released, and there should have been some instance of communication between the paparazzi and Zendaya and Holland’s management teams so that the couple would have at least been prepared.

Ultimately, the paparazzi does more harm than good, endangering the lives of many simply for better ratings. To most, it may seem that this is what celebrities signed up for by becoming famous and that they should deal with the paparazzi, but the paparazzi need to have restrictions and a set of laws enforced to ensure that celebrities are not robbed of their fundamental human rights.


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