Call For Media and Government Investigation

of Sathya Sai Baba And his worldwide cult, the Sathya Sai Organization

Pamela Stephenson Protects Celeb ‘Shrink Rap’ Interviewees

Posted by Barry Pittard on November 3, 2007

In the experience of networked former followers of Sathya Sai Baba, there needs to be a new regimen of sensitivity and responsibity in the media. Overall, we have fared well, but see the need for a better grasp of deeper human issues, and greater standards of accuracy.

This is not to say, necessarily, censorship of either journalists or of content presented by those they write about. (Although it is a sad comment that the very advocates of an open society have, all too often submitted themselves, to self-censorship against philistine triumph). Rather, it is about creating an altogether different climate in which genuine feelings of interview or other subjects can be discussed more openly and commented on sensitively and intelligently, and cynical exploitation. As in e.g., pop music, principled, genuinely critical and sensitive media would raise standards and help to create richer canons of satisfaction, rather than sinking to the lowest (assumed!) common denominator.

I recently saw Pamela Stephenson interviewed by Andrew Denton in Enough Rope on ABC television (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). She is the former celebrated actress and comedian, and star of such television shows Not The Nine O’Clock News. She is now a clinical psychologist in Hollywood and a professor of psychology at the California Graduate Institute.pamelastephenson.jpg

Vile Public Critics

In her recently-made television series Shrink Rap, her famous interview subjects were willing to bare their more vulnerable feelings and lesions, and in a serious way beyond what usually passes for celebrity (so-called) ‘revelations’. Her subjects thus far have been Sharon Osbourne, Stephen Fry, David Blunkett, Sarah Ferguson, and Robin Williams.

pamela-stephenson-and-robin-williams.jpgIn a note for the show, Stephenson says:

“Shrink Rap is an attempt to allow people not to be under pressure of performing, not to feel that they have to present the ideal self, the one that is always adorable and perfect and funny and together. This allows people to bring forward the true self, to not always tell the official story”.

Holding Barbarians at Bay

But, prior to its release, she found herself editing things out far more than she had earlier thought she would need to. It was not the celebrities themselves who called for this degree of censorship but Stephenson’s own deepening awareness of state-of-the-art maliciousness among media commentators and other unconscienable attackers.

Stephenson had her own experience of having earlier been one of Great Britain’s best-known television celebrities (and is, moreover, the wife of one of the world’s most famous comedians Billy Connelly). Therefore, the need occurred her to go to still greater editorial lengths to protect her famous interview subjects. She was acutely aware of the extreme readiness of unscrupulous critics to make insensitive and distorted use of what her subjects revealed about themselves. In an interview for The Independent, she observed:

“I can control what we have in the programme, and take out things that might be misunderstood, but there’s no guarantee of how it’s going to be received. I will feel terrible on people’s behalf if anyone is publicly punished for saying how they feel.”

Slack Journalism Needs Extinctifying

Rupert Murdoch thinks he can influence an eco friendly ‘greening’ of his newspapers. So then, let him and other prime movers and shakers support those developmental programmes which create greater awareness in journalists (and especially the emerging trainee ones) that might approach that sensitivity and deep ethics being role-modeled by Pamela Stephenson.

Further Resources

Pamela Stephenson – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

One Response to “Pamela Stephenson Protects Celeb ‘Shrink Rap’ Interviewees”

  1. […] Pittard presents Pamela Stephenson Protects Celeb ‘Shrink Rap’ Interviewees over at Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba And his worldwide cult, the […]

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