• Wed, Jun 6 2012

Is Oprah Exploiting Paris Jackson For Ratings? (Yes)

Michael Jackson was a flawed human being in a lot of ways, but one thing he seemed to get right was shielding his kids from the prying eyes of the paparazzi. So why is it suddenly okay to exploit his daughter for publicity?

14-year-old Paris Jackson is set to appear on Oprah Winfrey‘s OWN network this coming Sunday to discuss the loss of her father and her own budding acting career. This seems like a savvy move to revive the network’s flagging ratings, as well as help introduce Paris to the world. In a handshake deal with the devil, Oprah will receive $1,000 for each tear she coaxes the bereaved child to shed into her waiting bosom. Ka-ching!

Am I the only one who finds this super gross? Please excuse my pearl-clutching response, but Michael Jackson’s dying wish was basically that his kids be able to have normal childhoods and grow up outside the spotlight. (You know, the spotlight…that thing that drove him insane and ultimately killed him.) And sure, Paris may be doing this interview voluntarily, but is a 14-year-old really mature enough to be held responsible for her own self-exploitation? I mean, I wanted to do all sorts of dumb shit at age 14, but my parents said no, because that was their job. Step it up, guardians of Paris Jackson.

I think her aunt Janet Jackson needs to take the wheel here, because she’s the only one who seems to have the child’s best interests in mind. As she told Oprah:

“We’ve spoken about the fact that you’re only a child once. I think there’s a time for everything, and now is not the time [to act in films]. I told her I thought she should enjoy being a kid, possibly go to college–or not–but wait till she turns 18. She’s a very tough, smart girl. But it’s a cut-throat industry. I wouldn’t want my child to do it.”

Word.

(Via The Daily Mail)

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  • imani

    Paris Jackson could not be exploited except with the full consent of her grandmother. I think if it were up to her she would never do an interview. Like her dad she does not have a choice in the matter. The grandmother and grandfather are behind the whole interview. And they could care less what Janet Jackson thinks. They forced her into the business as a child and this is what they are doing to Paris. It is a win-win situation for the Jackson family and Oprah. She makes money and fame off the interview, and the grandparents keep the Jackson kids in the limelight, so they can continue making money off of them. When she did the initial interview with them, the grandmother followed up with tons of interviews and appearances for the Jackson three to appear in. It is Hollywood and the bottom line is keeping your face out there in the public to make as much money as possible. The grandmother i am sure is in the same room as Paris does this interview. And this is where her acting skills are put to a test. She already knows what is going to be asked and what to say, It is like when she was little and her dad made a game out of wearing the masks. It isn’t the upcoming movie when she will make her acting debut it is with Oprah.

    • corlista

      It is also no secret that Katherine is smitten with Oprah. Listen to the very end of the interview that took place at Hayvenhurst a year + ago. Katherine goes on about how much she admires OW and initiates the two of them getting together for lunch which, of course, Oprah jumps on. If someone had publicly humiliated and denigrated my son or brother – or any family member – the way Oprah did with Michael Jackson, you wouldn’t be able to get me within a 1000 miles of them. I hope to heaven when these kids grow up they know who really supported and cared for their father and who didn’t.

  • Moi

    At least someone (other than MJ fans) is asking this question now!

    What’s worse, Oprah dislikes Michael Jackson and has made clear she believes he was a criminal. The fact that she continues to be willing to exploit his child (with the help of the child’s grandparents) is disgusting.

    Why is Paris even doing this interview? So Oprah can push a little harder to get ~juicy details~ about her father? So Paris can promote a movie that is in limbo and may not even be made?!

    What exactly has changed with Paris Jackson in the past two years, that we need ANOTHER Oprah interview with her?

    This entire situation is ridiculous.

    • corlista

      “The fact that she continues to be willing to exploit his child (with the help of the child’s grandparents) is disgusting.”
      “Why is Paris even doing this interview? So Oprah can push a little harder to get ~juicy details~ about her father?”

      My sentiments exactly!! Oprah has trashed Michael since 1993 with her lurid insinuations and baiting anyone who’s ever known him to get more dirt on him – past or present. The fact that she would use this child for ratings proves to me that she’s even more contemptible and shameless than I thought she was. However, I also agree with poster imani. This would never have happened without her grandparents’ consent and that, to me, is the saddest part of the whole manipulative mess. I grieve for Michael…and his children.

  • ultravioletrae

    “Michael Jackson was a flawed human being in a lot of ways,” really? Like what? Aren’t you actually talking about the flawed media that continually makes up flaws about Michael Jackson for ratings and profit? And another thing: “You know, the spotlight…that thing that drove him insane and ultimately killed him?” Hmmm, a doctor is sitting in jail for killing Michael Jackson and the media drove the poor man insane with their lies most of his adult life. But, Michael Jackson said he loved being on stage more than anything else in the world, even said he would SLEEP onstage if he could. And you’re complaining about Oprah and her exploitation? Might want to have a talk with “The Man In The Mirror.” I’m no fan of Oprah and I’m no fan of this exploitation either.

    • corlista

      Tell it, girl!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m no fan of Oprah either but I was jumpin’ in my chair reading your post!

    • Sue Jackson

      You tell it, girl! This media bod who is the author of this piece has the nerve to blame the spotlight when the tabloid media did all in their power to try and drive him “insane” – they didn’t manage that in my opinion BUT they broke Michael’s heart and near damn broke his spirit over many issues SO many times! Now, including Oprah, who’s so desperate to get $$$$$ and ratings for her fast fading failing OWN network show, she’s willing to exploit the 14 year old daughter of someone she made out to be a “liar” and all kind of other nastier implications, the whole tabloid media industry make me endlessly heart-sickened! Load of vultures!!

  • TheresaM

    “A flawed human being in many ways” could describe any one of us. He was a musical genius who shared his talents as a singer, songwriter, dancer, choreographer, producer, composer, and film maker with us for over 40 years. He was stalked and lied about by the press for a good portion of his life. Oprah made a name for herself with an interview with Jackson in the early ’90′s. She squandered a golden opportunity to intelligently interview the greatest artist of the last 50 years by asking him embarrassing and invasive personal questions. Over the years she treated Michael Jackson as if he was a criminal and never gave him a fair chance, even sabotaging him at times. Even since his death, she just can’t let her negative stance go even as she uses Michael Jackson’s name for ratings. Now that her OWN network is struggling and she needs ratings, she once again goes to a Jackson, his daughter.

    While I agree with the writer’s opinion in regard to the exploitation of Paris Jackson, I so object to the use of the word “insane.” Jackson was continuously in the spotlight his entire life never having any real privacy. The media stalked him and perpetuated lies about him to the public that must have been unbearable. He suffered from severe insomnia and high anxiety as well as having lupus and vitiligo. Even during the worst times in his life, he continued to create and be an amazing parent to his children. While his last years were difficult due to media and law enforcement harassment, he spent those years with his children loving and guiding them. They are great kids and I really hate to see this exploitation by the media and especially Oprah.

    Just as a reminder, Dr. Conrad Murray, the doctor given responsibility to treat Michael for insomnia, is serving a jail sentence for his egregious neglect of his patient while under his care. His patient, Michael Jackson, died as a result of Murray’s inattention and lies.

  • June

    Wow, finally, an author telling it like it is, with appropriate comments. I don’t agree with the characterization of Michael as “insane” or the other choice verbal usages, but I don’t believe that was the point of this piece. Someone DOES need to step up and protect these children from Oprah and her ilk. Oprah never liked Michael Jackson; she was honest about that; she didn’t want to be his friend; she said now that he is dead “we will never know the truth”. Is Paris even aware of Oprah’s dislike of her father. After all, the children are young, and were shielded by their father from the likes of Oprah. When on Ellen, Paris admitted she had no idea how “big” her father really was. He had “a few songs”, she said. Paris NEVER looks happy when photographed; she actually appears to be crying out for help! Why doesn’t someone step in? There is an appointed guardian, but only with respect to money issues involving the children. I guess as long as they are fed, clothed and sheltered, they aren’t legally protected from their own family! I take some peace in believing the film “Lundon’s Bridge” will never see the light of day, if for no other reason than Paris will be too old for the role by the time enough money is raised from book sales to actually produce the film! Katherine Jackson, your granddaughter may want to act and while you may want to accommodate her 14 year old wishes; would you acquiesce so quickly were it her desire to jump off Mt. Everest?

    • Jackson

      Paris LOVES being photographed! Anyone notice this.
      Do not worry, God is good and their desire for the failure of Paris and your movie will never happen.

  • sc34441

    The Jackson family seems intent on turning Michael Jackson’s daughter into another Paris Hilton or Kim Kardashian.

    Let the kid grow up and get an education, please.

    My advice to the Jackson family is, move out of Hollywood. It’s a town filled with vultures who destroyed MJ. His wish for his children was to have a “normal childhood” which he himself was denied.

    There are plenty of wonderful places in the U.S. the Jackson’s could live in. They choose to remain in Hollywood, why I’ll never know…..

  • MYGirl

    Some haters disguised as fans are trying to boycott the Paris projects? (Yes)
    How much you earned the haters to post this little note?
    Sorry the frustrated, but nothing will change. This is Something That concerns only to Paris and her family.
    Oprah is a professional. And Paris gave an interview to his program because he thought feasible. Simple!

    • Sue

      I am no haters disguised as a fan and generally I would NOT believe in boycotting anything of Paris’ decision were I honestly to believe this WAS Paris’ decision instead of ‘Grandpa’ Joe backed up by Katherine (as always)! And so, as such, this would not be in accordance with Michael’s wishes! There was a CLEAR reason Michael left nothing to Joe; while he had a big enough heart to forgive he certainly didn’t forget and thus he left Joe or the siblings anything in his will. Had he done, all the money would have been gone, leaving Michael’s children NOTHING!
      As for Oprah – a professional what? Gold-digger? Vulture? Bitch? Media whore? Who just happens to be a Michael hater – simple but not for the reasons YOU state!

  • corlista

    I am so proud of every poster up to this point. You speak beautifully, intelligently and with such passion for Michael. The days of Michael Jackson being eviscerated without a vociferous outcry are over and, obviously, the same now goes for his children.

    • MYGirl

      Passion for Michael? Busting his daughter, calling it flawed human being who became insane!
      This article is rubbish full of evil and envy.
      Tabloid. Burn all.

  • janet

    Isn’t Oprah Retired ??? She Doesn’t Like Michael EVERYONE Knows That, But She Wants To Be In His Children Business ? Just Let Him Rest In Peace And Leave His Children Alone… Please And Thank You…

  • Jackson

    Michael Jackson was not a flawed human at nothing. Faulty are you stupid.
    Paris did this interview and how many more she will want. Choke on his own envy.
    And with all this jealousy of the presenter is because the interview will pump.

  • MJ

    Where even Janet said that? Oops, on Oprah. lol.

  • MYGirl

    You are not realizing that this article is tabloid and is kicking ass Michael and also her daughter Paris!

  • Jackson

    Many of those fans who are here showing resentment by Oprah will be sitting Sunday to watch your program. Fact.

  • June

    @corlista, your comment starting “it is also no secret that Katherine is smitten with Oprah” is right on the money. As a mother, I feel for Katherine so much; however, as you say, if someone had denigrated my child publicly all contact would be severed. I believe Katherine is impressed at Oprah’s success in the industry and has forgotten the past (or was never aware of it) when it comes to her son’s wishes for his own children.

  • Stephen

    Michael was a human being, and any human being has flaws. His was overemphasized due to his connection with the media and his ever growing fame. Talented, definitely! But human. He became so big that everyone wanted a piece of him. Even in his humility. Now he is taken from this world and the one child that is the most vocal, and the most vulnerable is his daughter. Oprah is a mastermind at being that media blood sucker who will exploit Paris just to get another story. Because we all want to read about Michael. Flaws and all. We want to know him for his fame and glory. We all want to identify with him in some way. His image was made and we worship him. So fans run to defend him and the media is out to make money on him. Flaws or not, we all are giving our money to support the media’s “drug habit”, in this case, Michael and his fame. But I would want Paris to have a normal childhood. It isn’t possible in Hollywood. Now that she is tasting fame, she too is running headlong into it. Janet sees the dangers. Where are Prince and Blanket in all of this. Why Paris? Because Paris is the one who the media has targeted. She is willing to submit to fame, and all in her father’s name. Paris should recognize that it isn’t because of anything she’s done except cry at a funeral. That one thing has catapulted her to sudden stardom and for the media to feed. Oh, and she is a pretty girl. If things keep going the way they are, Paris will one day be hooked on a drug too. She too might become the next Jackson to be exploited because of her flaws. Because she can’t handle the business. She will go the way of the young female celebrity and then what will we have to say about her? Plenty because she is Michael Jackson’s daughter and what perverted media outlet wouldn’t want to feed and add to the miserable end because we all love those flaws so much that those tabloids are still alive when Michael isn’t.

    • Sue Jackson

      All you say here is 100% heartbreakingly true, Stephen and I admire the way you write! Were you a journalist, you would make a fine, ethical one as in the ones we had at one time too -bravo!

    • stephen

      Thank you, Sue. I am not a journalist but I am a writer. I pride myself on being totally honest. Would love to become a journalist if given an opportunity though :)

  • Judith

    Gross — but totally predictable.

    Paris has emerged a beautiful young woman who wants to be an actress — and she’s Michael Jackson’s daughter. She enjoys the attention (as expected) and that makes her ripe for exploitation by greedy and unscrupulous media moguls and warthogs. The boys make fewer appearances and Little Prince seems to have a real aversion to media. Since Paris is too young to have achieved anything on her own, her current drawing power is that she is Michael Jackson’s daughter. Absent Jackson’s continuing hands-on influence, these children need a wise advisor who understands the pitfalls and traps set by Media, and who will help them develop the discrimination required to navigate the minefield of celebrity. Thus prepared, they have a good chance to grow into the fame that was her Father’s legacy — healthy and secure in their future careers whatever they may be. Regrettably, I don’t see this wise influence evident in the Jackson Family.

    The children speak beautifully of Michael who was the single and supreme parental influence in their lives (Father and Mother) — and it shows. When asked by another interviewer, “Do you remember things your Father said?” Paris remarked, “Daddy told me to remember everything he told me, and I do remember … everything.” I was heartened by that remark because it means she keeps his advice and counsel very close. I wish them all the very best.

    As for Oprah, the fickle ratings winds are blowing against her now and she is fighting for survival (along with many others). History tells her that anything Michael Jackson-related is a guaranteed ratings infusion. Oprah has much to answer for in my view. She had a fabulous opportunity early on to explore Michael Jackson as artist and man, his character and way of being. Yet, she made a dog’s breakfast of the interview by focusing instead on sex, surgeries, and sleepovers. The interview was a ratings bonanza for her, nonetheless, so she achieved her short-term goal. But she could have made long-term television history with perhaps several Jackson interviews on different aspects of his life. Was she playing to prevailing anti-Jackson sentiment at the time or pressure from the top? Perhaps, but Oprah was Queen of TV back then, and her loyal audience would have willingly followed her on an extended journey of discovery with Michael Jackson –- and learned much about this complex, sensitive, creative artist and humanitarian. That rare opportunity is gone forever.

    There are good reasons why media is called the Beast. It captures and marks territory with its own waste; kills or maims everything in its path; and it never, ever cleans up after itself.

    • MJ Brookins

      Well said, Judith. I hope Oprah is guided to your comment. She would find a wellspring of wisdom here. I know I did. Thank you.

    • myra

      Judith you are soo right.

    • myra

      So true Judith

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