Poor Form Regarding Privacy

A successful entertainer was recently outed as allegedly having a financial net worth in the billions of dollars, not due to earnings from work in the industry, but Old Money in the family.

The entertainer, who shall go unnamed here, was not handed stardom on a silver platter. The person in question attended prep school in the east and then a solid university before a career opportunity cut formal education short. A look back at this person’s resume reveals a start in regional venues and a steady climb, based on talent and perhaps luck, up the ladder in the business.

Along the way, the entertainer married and started a family. Tremendous success came, but it was the result of talent and hard work, not family connections or influence.

So it’s disappointing that the media has chosen to broadcast this person’s “net worth” to the world. First of all, disclosing this information immediately endangers the entertainer and every member of her family.  Whether it’s kidnapping by sophisticated organized crime gangs or random acts of stupidity by just plain crazy people, those in the public eye live with enough challenges to their children’s healthy upbringing without this kind of reporting.

Second, the entertainer’s older family members who control the majority of the assets are still living, so the likelihood of the entertainer actually being “worth” billions of dollars is very far-fetched.  When the responsibility for the fortune is passed on, it will most likely be done through sophisticated trusts that limit access to funds and may even skip a generation, especially one who’s already financially well-off.

Finally, some things should simply remain private. Rationalizations for catering to humanity’s baser instincts and tastes have always been easy, but rarely hold water under careful consideration. This isn’t something that the public “needs to know” in order to function better as a democracy. It’s cheap journalism.

The entertainer made it on their own. Play fair: report what you will about them, but leave their family–who live quietly and have never asked for fame–alone.



2 thoughts on “Poor Form Regarding Privacy

  1. The person you’re talking about is single handedly responsible for significantly increasing the number of female producers and show runners in the television industry. That might be something worth reporting, but the press never mentions it. Instead they talk about how much money her grandfather has and imply that some day it will all be hers. Poor form indeed.

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