December 1, 2010

Hubris Takes a Holiday from Twitter

It takes real stones--or just good old fashioned temerity--for a gaggle of millionaire celebrities to stand united and demand their fans pony up a million dollars for a charity. Never mind the fact that they could scrounge up a cool million by digging the spare change out of their collective couch cushions. And, never mind the fact that the world is still on shaky economical ground with the recession and money is stretched among the lower class--if there's a middle class anymore, I'll eat my hat--to the point that gas money is considered a luxury. What I find to be the height of hubris is the idea that such a pompous charity stunt is the best they could come up with.
Give us $1,000,000 or no more twitpics from Lady Gaga dressed in her newest haute couture abomination! How about you give me a fucking break?
The list of celebrities and pseudo-celebrities is as impressive as any red carpet event for the finale of an MTV reality show. Justin Timberlake, Lady Gaga, Alicia Keys, and Elijah Wood are easily the biggest names taking part in the World AIDS/HIV Day online campaign. But, grouping them with the Buried Life boys and spoiled debutantes like the Kardashians and the Guinness heiress makes it look all the more hokey and self-aggrandizing. It's especially grating when the YouTube testimonials from some celebrities all sound alike, read from the same shallow script, with all the passion of an NFL linebacker schilling bargain basement prices at the nearest used-car lot.
The whole Keep A Child Alive campaign is a noble one, and I think anyone with a genuine interest in making a donation ought to check out this link for details. In fact, it would nice if people could pitch in what money they can spare there, rather than bolster the egos of vapid socialites.
And when I looked on Twitter today, I was dismayed to see how many retweets were coming in by the very celebrities that had vowed to stay off their damned Blackberries. It kind of defeats the purpose of exercising a "digital death" when your Twitter account is still actively posting how you're not going to tweet anymore until your starry-eyed followers fill up the coffers and your already over-inflated pride.
It's a cheap stunt. Kind of like that charity auction earlier in the year for Haiti relief, where winning bidders would have their wares schilled by celebrities through their online identities? Well, a lot of those celebrities reneged, it turns out. And the best consolation the charity organizers could come up with was refunding the money donated. Yeah, that's a real problem solved. At least with this newest schtick, it's guaranteed to work even though--let's face facts--not a single one of these celebrities will stay away from Facebook or Twitter if their million dollar campaign falls short of the mark.