Ryan Seacrest silent on Twitter as AIDS fundraising campaign is still far from its goal

Celebrities who agreed to stop using Twitter and other social media
until their fans raised $1 million on World AIDS Day are still silent two days later, and they may be silent for a long time. As of 10:30 a.m. ET, only $183,298 has been raised, according to the Buy a Life fundraising meter, hence the reason American Idol host Ryan Seacrest hasn’t tweeted since Nov. 30. Others participating include Kim Kardashian and Elijah Wood.

Entertainment Weekly notes that “despite having millions and millions of combined followers, the actual cumulative effect of missing a few celebrity tweets is pretty minimal” and thus “radio silence from these celebrities is a bit harder to notice than they were hoping.” And The Wrap points out that besides silencing the people who need to get their fans to donate, “organizers put a $10 minimum on donations,” which is just dumb.

As commenters here suggested, perhaps raising money to keep them away from Twitter would have been more successful. I wonder if they’ll modify the campaign soon to let the celebrities reanimate to remind their followers to donate. In the meantime, while it’s tragic that more money hasn’t been raised for a good cause, at least there are some interim benefits.

Update, Dec. 6: As of around 5:30 p.m. ET, the celebrities are back thanks to a donation from a billionaire. The Los Angeles Times reports that “pharmaceutical exec Stewart Rahr [donated] Monday afternoon, putting fans and the participating celebs out of their social-media-starved misery to benefit Alicia Keys’ Keep a Child Alive foundation. … Rahr owns Kinray, the largest wholesale pharmaceutical distributor in the world.” The paper says only about $300,000 was raised as of this morning, but TMZ reports Rahr only gave “roughly $500,000″ (love that accurate TMZ reporting), which would leave $200,000 unaccounted for.

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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.