As we celebrate the Sunday evening birth of little Lorenzo Domenic LaValle, we’d like to take a moment to ponder the implications of our entertainment choices and their influence on the PR business–and our culture at large.
MTV’s “The Real World” began way back in 1992: Kurt and Tupac were still around, The Rachael wasn’t yet a thing and the reality TV landscape’s occupants were, on average, a little older and better behaved. What the hell happened?
Would anyone have ever guessed that a woman like Snooki would require the (considerable) skills of a publicist, much less develop into what we must call an enduring brand? The PR pros who’ve watched this multimillion dollar wreck* in action must have some questions about what it means for the future of their industry.
So: How has reality TV changed your business?
Do you represent any reality stars? If not, would you like to (answer honestly, now)? What will the concept of celebrity mean to the post-reality generation embodied by little Lorenzo? What will change about the PR business when it begins to apply even more extensively to a demographic raised on Jersey Shore and other such frankly exploitative meal-ticket franchises? What is the price of celebrating such intentionally bad behavior for so long?
Most importantly, what will the little dude’s nickname be? (We’re going with Larry V.)
*Of course, true to form, Snooki managed to attract controversy even in the maternity ward, where she irritated others by “commandeer[ing]” the entire sixth floor and filling it with her hangers-on. At least she’s consistent.