Fans can’t take pictures with touring idols, producers demand approval over media’s photos

For the American Idol 5 tour, the show’s producer 19 Entertainment is becoming a little fascist. At the concerts, fans “were reportedly allowed to snap pictures, but were not allowed to stop and pose with the performers, nor to hand them cell phones,” according to E! Online.

More significantly, producers are demanding that media covering the event get approved before being published. As a result, “the New Hampshire Union Leader elected not to send a photographer to the concert or kick-off press conference,” according to E! “The paper instead ran an editor’s note, explaining it would not be publishing any images of the concert because the ‘show’s organizers made an unacceptable demand: the right to review and approve our news photos before publication.'”

The Boston Globe also “refused and left,” according to a story in the paper, but apparently the other spineless pushovers bowed to the will of the Idol machine. As The Globe notes, reporters even allowed themselves to be humiliated by the tour’s sponsor, Pop Tarts. That’s because “the press contingent was reduced to interviewing a 7-foot-tall Mint Chocolate Chip Pop – Tart … who responded only to yes-or-no questions.” Who says journalism is in crisis?

“Idol” Tour Not Caught on Film [E! Online]
‘Idol’ worshipers give stars a sweet start to their tour [The Boston Globe]

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.