In the Oct. 8th issue of People, country singer Faith Hill reveals how YouTube almost made her want to quit the business. I’m sure by now everyone has heard about the infamous crotch-grabbing incident. When the video of Hill chastising the fan appeared on YouTube, she was humiliated. But that wasn’t the first time that Hill became a YouTube fixture; in November 2006, Hill was caught on camera making a face and mouthing an indignant “what?” when Carrie Underwood beat her out for Female Vocalist of the Year at the County Music Awards. “It was hell,” she told People. “I was being ripped apart limb by limb. I wanted to quit.”
The creation of YouTube—and expansion of online media as a whole—has added a whole new element to the loss of privacy a celebrity must cope with. In generations past, a star could make a mistake, possibly see it on Page Six, and have it forgotten about a day later. But in the digital age, stars’ meltdowns are all over the blogs and they’ll forever be etched in our culture’s perceptions of them. Just look at Britney’s disastrous VMA performance. The YouTube video has received over 6 million hits and spurned a slew of explanations and pleas to leave Britney alone.
I have to wonder, what’s next? If we already read about every single detail of a celebrity’s private life, are bombarded with photos of them on a daily basis, and have YouTube videos to document their downfalls, where are we headed?