Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby wpgrace » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:28 am

Exactly, darlin'. Everybody has a cell phone.

We are, in fact, all at risk of having our worstest, stoopidest moments exposed. Celebs are surely aware that even their most mundane moments can be.

The question then still is, tho, do we post them here?
I still kinda figure that, as long as the pics are mundane, we are their kindest audience. :shrug:
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby Lilly » Tue Jan 31, 2012 3:50 am

I have a few disjointed thoughts about this, but I'll try to be as coherent as I can.

I expressed on the Appreciating Alex thread that the shopping series made me uncomfortable. I was fine with the first 2 pictures that maggatha posted because, to me, they seemed like a couple of photos taken of a chance encounter in a parking lot. (She actually had asked my opinion about them before she posted.)

But the next series of him coming out of the store, I felt were more intrusive. They were taken with a telephoto lens from some distance away, and whoever took them had to have waited for Alex to come out of the store. Those two things send up red flags for me. For what it's worth, I don't believe these were taken by professional paparazzi. Pros earn their living taking and selling photos of celebrities. These aren't that sort of photo. While I don't know where these particular photos originated, I have the sense that they were taken by a fan whose aim was to "cash in" on the gratitude of fellow fans for having captured great images of Alex, rather than taking them for any monetary reimbursement.

If the picture taken inside the store was taken by the same person, then that person had to have followed him into the store. Again, disturbing.

Now, it's possible that whoever took these pictures felt that by keeping a distance and not approaching Alex, they were avoiding intruding on his privacy. I can understand that argument for 2 or 3 pictures, but following his routine for the length of time that this series covers just crosses the line, in my opinion.

Like Carol, I too saw photos of Shannyn last year, very pregnant and very radiant. There were taken as she walked down the street and she didn't seem to mind them being taken. However, I chose not to post or link to them because I felt opening her pregnancy up to discussion was an intrusion into her privacy. As some of you have alluded to in other examples, it wasn't that the pictures were taken, it was apprehension about what might be said about them.

As for photos of celebrities children -- unless the celebrity brings that child (or teen) to a public event where they are well aware that photos will be taken, that child is off limits, in my opinion.

Is loss of privacy part of the price of success in Hollywood? Yes , it is. But loss of respect or human decency doesn't have to be. :2cents:
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:33 am

Busy for a few days and I miss all this wonderful analysis and discussion.

First off, I wasn't bothered one bit by him the grocery store photos. I'm embarrassed to say that I didn't give it one thought other than: "OMG!! New pix of Alex and how cute is he in casual clothes, pushing his cart full of necessities and buying cookies?!?!?!?!"

****edited to add: hadn't seen the in store pix till after I posted this. I was only referencing the ones where he was outside*****

That was straight from my brain, folks. Sad but a true fangirl moment.

Celebrity is a funny thing---you wait for what seems forever to become known, then when you are? You're hounded. I think Alex has been darn lucky so far to have escaped the lens and ink of the tabloids. I gotta think living in a chill place like Hawaii helps, too. I am certain that there are much less papparazzi there--but also, much less in the way of celebrities. So, those shutterbugs have only a few peeps to keep tabs on.

As his star rises, so does the price for pix of him. That is the unfortunate side of the business. And in today's day and age any one of us could be having our pix taken unknowingly by some knucklehead with a cell phone.

I don't know how big stars handle it. The Brad and Angie's who can't walk 2 steps with their kids without having photogs tripping over them. Compared to that? Alex probably feels pretty damn happy that he gets an occasional unwanted pic taken of him at the market. And I am thrilled that he isn't stalked in that way. I hope that never happens to him.

No kids----I don't care if you're a star or a political figure, if they're young they should be off limits. If it's a pic of Alex and his son at an event? No problem. Also, my big thing is the paps following celebs in their cars---getting too close, almost getting into accidents, etc. Princess Di should have taught us all that lesson. When I hear of celebs being chased by photogs and the kids are in the car being chased?? Makes my blood boil.

So......no, wasn't bothered by the photos. But I also wasn't aware of how they were taken, by whom and such----maybe that's the fangirl in me who is just happy to see Alex out and about, doing normal things. Things I can relate to. Things you don't expect a gorgeous otherworldly creature to be doing! It makes it somehow more special and: "aw, look at him buying his paper towels and stocking up his home.". Kind of a sweet moment for me, actually.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby librarian_7 » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:16 pm

Okay, taking off my mod hat here...and just posting as a member. I''ve been thinking about this for several days, trying to get my thoughts in some sort of coherent order. Not sure that's happened, but I'm going to write something down anyway.

I don't go out looking for candid shots of Mr. O, so I've very likely missed some of the more intrusive ones. But I was a bit bothered by the entire series of pictures from the grocery store. (Gotta say, if the most scandalous thing that man does is stop by the market for paper towels, it's no wonder the paps aren't following him too closely. Far as I can tell, he works hard, trains hard, and otherwise leads a pretty quiet life...not really the stuff of tabloid headlines.) What got me about the grocery store photos was that at first, I was thinking, oh, someone just happened by with a camera and snapped a few shots. Then there was the one INSIDE the store, and I also looked at those photos and thought, gee, these are way too good for someone to have simply taken them with a cell phone. Which turns it from harmless "shots of opportunity" to "stalker," at least as far as I'm concerned.

Several people have brought up the fact that, as a sucessful actor, Alex has little expectation of privacy when he goes out in public. That's true, as far as it goes. For that matter, neither do I...although it's a pretty safe bet no one is following me with a camera. Although as a fan, and a reasonably polite person, I feel like the thing to do, should I run across a celebrity in a public, but not formal, setting, like a store...would be to ASK, "Excuse me, Mr. O'Loughlin, I'm a big fan, would it be all right if I snapped a picture of you?" And if he said no, honoring that.

I can think of several times I've seen (and recognized) celebrities over the years, and not even done so much as go up and speak to them, because I didn't want to bother someone who was clearly just going about his/her daily business.

In thinking about this issue, I tried to look at it from more than one direction. For example, say I suddenly became a well-know personage (again, I know...unlikely. Bear with me.). What does it mean, that I can't run to the store for some milk, late at night? Or pick up a bottle of cough medicine, without it becoming somehow "news"? I think even people who aspire to celebrity may not fully realize that there comes a point when every movement is so circumscribed that they have no freedom at all. Those of us who are pretty much anonymous, have a great deal of freedom...although personally, I've noticed that the more casually I'm dressed when I make those store runs, the more likely I am to run into someone I know from work. Never fails.

I know I'm rambling here. And I know that there are those who are hungry for new pictures of Alex, and others. (I confess to being very anxious to see new shots of Jason...) But if we care about these guys, as we profess to, then we shouldn't be so greedy we have to steal away their privacy. Yes, it's nice to know that Alex shops for his own paper towels. It's endearing, and it makes him seem less remote...more like a regular person you might be able to sit down and chat with over a beer, or a glass of iced tea. But the fact is, the more he has to put up with people snapping pictures of him while he compares prices on toilet paper, the less likely he'll be able to continue to live like a normal person. And to give him that privilege, I can forego the pictures of it.

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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby darkstarrising » Wed Feb 01, 2012 2:33 am

Several people have brought up the fact that, as a sucessful actor, Alex has little expectation of privacy when he goes out in public. That's true, as far as it goes. For that matter, neither do I...although it's a pretty safe bet no one is following me with a camera. Although as a fan, and a reasonably polite person, I feel like the thing to do, should I run across a celebrity in a public, but not formal, setting, like a store...would be to ASK, "Excuse me, Mr. O'Loughlin, I'm a big fan, would it be all right if I snapped a picture of you?" And if he said no, honoring that.


This part of your post, Lucky, got me to thinking....I wasn't bothered so much by the grocery store photos, but you have a point about doing the polite thing (asking permission) as opposed to what the person in the store did - taking images probably without asking permission and perhaps without Alex's knowledge. From what we've seen of Alex in public, he's been pretty accommodating (more than most) about having his picture taken especially with a fan. You can tell from his 'in-public' pictures whether he knows he's being photographed or is oblivious to it. From the grocery store photos, he's either unaware or is ignoring the whole situation.

Sigh. A quandary indeed.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby MickLifeCrisis » Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:29 am

I really debated about posting anything here. Because I feel like I'm totally wishy-washy.

My first reactions to the pics (and this would not include the Inside the Grocery Store One or The One with Cans of Chewing Tobacco (which, I swear - SWEAR - when I saw it my first thought was "Oh look. He's buying shoe polish." :blushing: I lead a sheltered life. :snicker: )) was "New Alex pics! Yay!" There is something about seeing him doing ordinary things that just amaze me. As if he could be an ordinary person doing mundane things.

Then I saw the Other Pictures and read the comments about following him inside the store and I realize gosh, that's right, and I start seeing everyone's point about respecting his privacy.

I guess I want it both ways. He is an actor in a popular television show. He chose this life. He knows when he goes out in public there is a good chance that someone might snap a picture of him jogging, or shopping. But I believe there is a lot less of this in Honolulu than in LA and he is probably happy about that and so willing to put up with it. I don't think he is hounded by paparazzi in Honolulu.

As for Saxon, Alex brought him "out in the open" during the BUP premieres. He's a teenager now, and if Alex takes him on a shoot in a place like a public park, then they must have talked about what might happen. Personally, I didn't see anything wrong with those park photos that were from a distance. JMO.

And if photos are already out there on the Internet and on FaceBook, then I don't see a problem with having them here on a member-only board. But I certainly understand if the management feels otherwise.

Yep that's me. Firmly on top of the fence. :sigh:
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby PNWgal » Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:03 pm

Well, scootch on over, MLC...because I feel the same way.

As any Alex fan, I'm infinitely curious about the normal things he does in his life, and I'd be a liar if I didn't get a kick out of seeing him support those kids by buying cookies from them (I also kinda wonder if he sat in his car and ate them all - I'd do that. :teeth: ) My biggest problem with these photos is they weren't a quick "grab the opportunity cuz I saw a celebrity" happy snap grabbed with a digital or camera phone - someone took the time to follow him from the parking lot into the store and waited for him to come out, where those kids and their delicious cookies were waiting, so they could take photos of him. That screams STALKER to me, and made me extremely uncomfortable - and I guess that was another issue for me, that word being tossed out there like it's no big deal.

I know the word "stalk" is used in jest, but being stalked is no laughing matter. Stalker laws have been passed because people are terrorized and killed by people who develop dangerous and insane obsessions about them, and I hate to see that happen to Alex. Like my mother always said, "give a guy a finger and he wants the whole arm". We love seeing new pictures of Alex, but where do we draw the line when our desire to see someone we admire encroaches on their personal and private time? What's next? Photos of him trying on shirts at the mall? Zoom photos of him at home? It's a slippery slope.

The trade-off for Alex being successful at his craft is inevitably going to be a loss of his anonymity, but part of me wonders if he realized just HOW insane that attention could or would get. As for Saxon...Alex chose this life. His kid didn't, and Alex seems to have worked very hard to keep him out of the spotlight. As far as I'm concerned, that boy should be off-limits unless it's a venue where it's understood that photos will be taken.

And I agree with everyone that's made this point - cell phone cameras are everywhere, and people are caught doing stuff they ordinarily wouldn't do if they knew they were being photographed or filmed. I guess it's the sneakiness of doing so that skeeves me a little bit, and the fact that someone like Alex has to watch EVERY SINGLE THING he does in public, so that he doesn't get caught doing something fans would find objectionable, or that the Alex haters out there could use against him. What a horrible way to live your life, watching every move you make.

librarian_7 wrote:But if we care about these guys, as we profess to, then we shouldn't be so greedy we have to steal away their privacy. Yes, it's nice to know that Alex shops for his own paper towels. It's endearing, and it makes him seem less remote...more like a regular person you might be able to sit down and chat with over a beer, or a glass of iced tea. But the fact is, the more he has to put up with people snapping pictures of him while he compares prices on toilet paper, the less likely he'll be able to continue to live like a normal person. And to give him that privilege, I can forego the pictures of it.


Said much better than I could. If seeing less pics of Alex means he's a little more free in his personal life, then I'm ok with that.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby r1015bill » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:38 pm

There's another angle we haven't really talked about yet.

How is the person who finds an incredible picture to know the circumstances under which it's been taken? How does anyone know what's going to offend other people. This is what the mods are going to care about.

Example. You find one photo so you post it. The next day, other photos come out so it's clear it was part of a series. What do you do? There are comments after your entry.

The charming and enchanting reason you posted and wanted to share is overwhelmed by other people commenting how terrible it is that you posted in the first place. Where I might see someone who is a really poor videographer so I post, someone else may see subterfuge and stealth.

As someone who has been asked to remove something here, I can tell you it feels terrible.

Sorry, this got a little more personal than I was intending but I think you can see that this is really a grey area.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby allegrita » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:45 pm

Rhonda-- you posted while I was composing this, so my post doesn't address what you said. I'll think about that and come back to it.


It has been so interesting to see all the responses on this thread. I've been struggling to pull my own thoughts together, because it's not an easy issue. So please forgive me, because this post has gotten ridiculously long. :roll:

This is just my personal feelings about the issue, not any sort of "official pronouncement of board policy," and I hope others will continue to say what they think.

I've been at two red-carpet events (Whiteout and BUP) where Alex signed autographs. At both events, he refused to sign paparazzi pictures. I heard him say, "That's a pap picture. I won't sign it," to a woman right next to me at the Back-up Plan premiere, and she was obviously a real fan--not some creep with stacks of pictures to sell on eBay. It speaks volumes to me that Alex refuses to sign those pictures. He doesn't like them, and he won't encourage people to take more, by signing them.

I really identify with what francis said about having two competing responses to seeing new "candid" pics. At first, I'm thrilled--new pics of this guy I really like! Yay! :yahoo: Second... I feel guilty, because I know he'd rather have been left alone. :Mickangel: Yes, I'm the owner/admin of this board, but first and foremost, I'm a fangirl. I totally understand why fans love this sort of pictures.

But... every time someone harasses Alex or invades his space or takes invasive pictures of him, he gets a little more guarded, a little less willing to be open and friendly, a little less the wonderful guy who charmed us when we first "met" him. I can't tell you the number of people who have said to me, nostalgically, that they miss the open, unguarded Alex of the early days. I miss him too, but it's partly our fault that he's not like that anymore. :Mickangel:

He has said over and over that he is an extremely private person who has no interest in the Hollywood lifestyle. But he is also a realist. He doesn't like being recognized, but he's very nice about it, and he's very kind to his fans, because he knows that we help keep him employed. He has gotten very good at handling his fame, but I think it's important for all of us to remember that he doesn't enjoy it. He would love to be invisible in public, and I honestly feel bad for him that he's lost the ability to blend into the crowd.

I want to talk about the fan experience from both sides, because I think it has a lot to do, at least tangentially, with the issue of privacy and photos. So please forgive me if I seem to go off topic for a while.

We fans have a sort of "one-way personal relationship" with the stars we admire. We see them all the time on TV. We watch videos about them. We care about them, wonder what they're like, fantasize about what might happen if we met them. But for the star, there's no relationship there. They have an endless succession of total strangers coming up to them and wanting to hug or kiss them, or begging for a photo or an autograph--or just snapping away without even being polite enough to ask. For the fans, running into a star is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and they're determined to grab it and go for the gusto. They don't stop to think that the star gets approached this way every single day.

Meeting up unexpectedly with fans is not fun for a star. It's work, and they're not even being paid for it. It's like if you're an accountant and you're on vacation, sunbathing on the beach, and some total stranger comes up to you and makes you do his taxes. Yeah, the stranger is thrilled to have had the experience--but for you, it wasn't so great.

OK, you say, that's all very well and good. But what does it have to do with people chasing Alex with cameras? Well, to me, it comes back to that "one-way personal relationship" that I talked about before. We care about our stars. We think about them a lot, and we want to know what they're really like. When we see pictures of them in an unguarded moment, we get a little thrill of intimacy, because we've gotten a taste of that "real" person. I'm not talking about nasty people who get their jollies finding out the worst things about a star. I'm talking about you and me. The people who love the stars more than anybody. But if we really do love them, shouldn't that make us more willing to give them some space and privacy in which to live their lives? If we miss the unguarded way our stars used to act when they weren't yet famous, why have we acted in such a way that they can't possibly behave the way we so admired? :shrug:

As for pictures of Alex's son, I feel very strongly that people should abide by Alex's stated wishes to keep him out of the public eye. That means that people should avoid taking or sharing pictures or video of him, unless Alex specifically invites people to take pictures of them together at an official public event. To me, Alex's personal time with his son, whether in public or not, should be off limits.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby PNWgal » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:58 pm

r1015bill wrote:There's another angle we haven't really talked about yet.

How is the person who finds an incredible picture to know the circumstances under which it's been taken? How does anyone know what's going to offend other people. This is what the mods are going to care about.

Example. You find one photo so you post it. The next day, other photos come out so it's clear it was part of a series. What do you do? There are comments after your entry.

The charming and enchanting reason you posted and wanted to share is overwhelmed by other people commenting how terrible it is that you posted in the first place. Where I might see someone who is a really poor videographer so I post, someone else may see subterfuge and stealth.

As someone who has been asked to remove something here, I can tell you it feels terrible.

Sorry, this got a little more personal than I was intending but I think you can see that this is really a grey area.




I think any member of any board out there is expected to exercise good judgement when choosing to post something BTS-wise, because not all of it is positive. Grace made an excellent point that Alex probably gets his pic snapped every time he's seen in public, and there are probably thousands of pics that we'll never see. Just because it's out there doesn't necessarily means it has to be disseminated.

Call me an ostrich, but I don't want to see BTS vids of Alex yelling at his assistant or kicking his dog, or taking a swing at a co-worker. I don't want to see anything that messes with my perception that he's a nice, down-to-earth guy that is coping with a very high-profile job. As much as I adore the man, he is still human and I'm sure has bad days, just like the rest of us. Lord knows I'd rather not be filmed having a meltdown at work - I'll bet Alex doesn't want that, either. And I would bet money there are people out there who are just waiting for an opportunity to make Alex look bad.

Case in point: Christian Bale's minutes-long rant during the filming of Terminator. It not only made me think less of him as a person, it totally ruined my enjoyment of him as an actor. One of my favorite movies is Reign of Fire, but I can't watch it now without thinking, "wow, Christian Bale is a total jerkface". I don't want anyone to ever feel that way about Alex.

That vid floating around of Alex with Dusty...while it's totally adorable, it was still kind of intrusive. Even if the viewer didn't know it was Saxon, it's still obvious there was someone's kid in that vid - shouldn't matter if it was Alex's kid, or the kid of the guy who stocks the food table. Anyone's kid should be off-limits. Plus, it was kinda obvious the person shooting the vid was trying really hard to hide the fact they were filming, which says to me the person KNEW they shouldn't be filming. I would bet that would be a fireable offense if that vid came from a crew member.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby allegrita » Fri Feb 03, 2012 11:06 pm

r1015bill wrote:As someone who has been asked to remove something here, I can tell you it feels terrible.


I want to address this one sentence, even though it is slightly off topic, because it's an issue that the mods and I devote a lot of thought and soul-searching to. And although Rhonda brought it up, this is addressed to everyone at MLA.

As moderators, it's our job to to keep an eye on things, and to fix the problems we find, whether it's a post in the wrong spot, or a duplicate thread, or a copyrighted picture, or something like what Rhonda described, which can be a much more difficult issue. We make a lot of judgment calls, especially when the issue involves something as ticklish as the pictures that prompted this thread in the first place. Moderating a board can be a really, really hard thing to do, and we agonize about how to do it right--and beat ourselves up when something we do doesn't go the way we hoped. The last thing we want to do is make our members feel uncomfortable about participating here.

I've been moderated myself--elsewhere, and right here at MLA. I know how it feels. It's embarrassing, and you feel like you've done something wrong, and sometimes you feel like you were singled out and slapped down unfairly. But that is not our intention.

Please understand, if we mod something any of you have posted, we aren't picking on you. We're not judging you and we're not mad at you. It's not personal. In fact, we try unbelievably hard NOT to be personal in the way we moderate the board. Our goal is to keep MLA a smoothly running, friendly and happy place. If we hurt anybody's feelings as we do that job, I am sincerely sorry. All I can say is that we do our best, and we care about this place and this community very much.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby darkstarrising » Fri Feb 03, 2012 11:27 pm

A couple of thoughts:

Modding - it's one of the reasons this site is as sane and wonderful a place as it is - keep up the fabulous work ladies :ghug: (my guess is the vast majority of those modded, myself included, did something in blissful ignorance).

Alex at the grocery store - my only other comment on this is he was either completely oblivious (which I kinda doubt) or he was aware and chose to ignore the intrusion. Reacting (badly or otherwise) would have hurt him more than helped him. I'll go with the thought that he understands this, 'cause it's comforting.

Thought on the camera phones - just because we can, doesn't mean we should.
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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby jen » Fri Feb 03, 2012 11:41 pm

What a fabulous, indepth discussion this has turned out to be!

I haven't looked in for a couple of days and it really provides a lot of food for thought. There are truly many sides to this.

About the issue of being modded (is that a verb?), Alle and the wonderful Mods here do a great job of managing the diverse personalities around here and I sometimes wonder if they think of their job as a lot like 'herding cats.' Maybe one reason this board is such a wonderful, civil and welcoming place for us is because they do their jobs so well!

Just sayin'

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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby librarian_7 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 11:42 pm

DSR, you're absolutely right...almost always, if someone gets modded, it's not anything done on purpose. And given that everyone makes mistakes from time to time...well, it happens.

We have an incredibly nice community, and for the most part, modding is easy here. And trust me, those things that do need addressing, we try to think about seriously, before acting.

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Re: Request for Member Discussion: What is too invasive?

Postby r1015bill » Sat Feb 04, 2012 12:06 am

Modding is a very hard job and I didn't want to imply that it wasn't. :friends: I dashed something off at work and I probably should have waited till later. You do create a wonderful playground for us to kick around in.

And it is always difficult to say to anyone that they aren't quite following the rules. It is such a hard job that I don't want to do anything that makes you mod me. I feel terrible if I do something that puts you in that position. In my situation, the modding was done as kindly as possible but I still felt bad that I had broken the rules without knowing it.

And that's the key - how does an individual know they are breaking the rules when posting pictures/videos they've found but don't know all the circumstances around the postings? Is there a way to tell before having to mod someone? What is "obvious" to some people may not be obvious to others. The longer the conversation goes on the more confused I get. I guess I'm on that fence with others. (Hopefully the fence doesn't have those pointy ends because that would hurt. :laugh: )
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r1015bill
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