Saturday, March 20, 2010

Is this news? Or is this gossip?

I have a question for you, and I want you to answer honestly. Not how you think you should answer, but an honest to goodness from your gut answer. Ready?


Are you interested in the Octomom? Is her life news?

Stop laughing. I'm asking you seriously. I know you think you should say no, but look deep. Are you curious?

Here's why I ask. My assignment yesterday was to stake out Octomom's house. I was mortified. That's what TMZ is for, right? I'm legitimate news! I work for the Peacock for goodness sakes! We don't cover gossip!

But is it gossip?

Here's what I found:  Whenever I'd tell someone what my assignment was yesterday, the first thing they'd ask was, "Oh! What's going on with Octomom??" So clearly most people want to know, just like I'm sure you kind of want to know even though you might not admit it. (Or maybe you already know.)

I'm quite torn on the issue. My gut says, no, it's not news. But what is news? Is it simply what people are talking about? What they want to know? Or does it need to have some value?

My thought is, if we didn't offer up  trash, the world wouldn't know. Would you feel any less informed not knowing the status of the Octomom?

Give me your opinion. Be completely honest.

Are you curious?

If so, read on and answer my question on whether this matters enough to be part of a news cast:

When Nadya Suleman (Octomom) bought her LaHabra house last year, she couldn't get financing (she's unemployed and has no source of income other than welfare). The owner of the house struck a deal with Nadya and her father. She would pay $4100 a month for a year, and at the end of that year, she'd have a balloon payment of $450,000. It's now been a year. She missed her last $4100 payment, and has not paid the $450,000 balloon payment and will be evicted on Tuesday if she doesn't come up with the money.

Okay. Your thoughts?


  1. Oh, boy. IMO, It's news from the point-of-view of the kids. What's gonna happen to them and how will she care for them without a roof over her head. If they're evicted, no doubt, there will be a fresh furor that will be in the news for days.

  2. Yeah, Joy, that's a huge issue. And yes, I suppose that element does have a news hook. Also the issue of a woman who irresponsibly makes a choice like this and expects others to pay for it. Hmmm... I'm afraid you're right. If the eviction happens, I suppose I'll be seeing a lot more of her!

  3. Honestly, I don't watch or read or listen to the news. I know nothing about celebrities, politics, the latest murder, etc. When I heard (through friends who ARE in touch with the world lol) about octomom, I thought, 'Ouch.' That's all. Not a second thought. Even now as I read your blog, I read every word until you actually got to her story. Then I skipped down to the comment box. lol

  4. I try not to watch the news. I hate hearing about Octomom, or the fact that I know to call her by that name. When the story first broke it was sensationalized because who gives birth to 8 kids?? I think it goes beyond her and to the failed system that would allow such a person to do so. That's newsworthy. The children's welfare is newsworthy. Octomom, getting lip injections, working out at the gym, all while staking out her house is TMZ.

  5. I'm sorry but perhaps I'm the only one who doesn't know who she is. Who is Octomom?


  6. Yes, Jefro, I agree. The main issue I see as newsworthy is that it happened at all, especially with a woman as unstable as her.

    Ann: You're lucky Octomom hasn't stretched to your neck of the woods. She's a single woman who gave birth to octuplets last year (for which she got a lot of media attention). Later, the story grew to a sensation after it was discovered she had six other children (making a total of fourteen), all by in vitro fertilization, and has no means to support them. She doesn't work. Was living with her parents. She appears to be a rather unstable person. If you look at pictures, you'll see she's deformed her face with plastic surgery.

    I suppose I could see it more as news if we would stick to the elements that matter, like the medical system failures, and what will happen with the kids, rather than focusing on the freak show. But... it's not up to me.

    Thanks all for chiming in!

  7. Wow...this is a hard one. It's crazy to stake out her house and it has to be awful for the news people that have to do it. I do want to know what's happening because I do care what happens to those 14 innocent kids. I agree with Jefro about not wanting to know about what that self-centered, irresponsible woman is doing. The biggest offender in all of this is the doctor that let it happen. He should lose his license or has he already?

  8. I don't really care what happens to her. She is muy loca. I feel horrified for her kids and her mother. Especially her mother who seems to be raising all fourteen kids. I also feel a bit sorry for myself because I'm helping pay for it through my taxes.

    Personally if she fades from the news never to be seen again, good riddence.

    But then again, she'll probably just pop out three more kids to get more attention again.


  9. I hear ya, Tirz. I really really wish the story would go away. But I think you're right. I think she's addicted to the attention and will find a way to stay in the spotlight.