Twitter is hot spot for celebrity news junkies everywhere; "following" a celeb *almost* feels like they're a real-life pal, right?
But studios and talent execs are not always pleased with what their celebrity clients post to their adoring public. Apparently you can do a lot of damage in 140 characters or less.
A leak on Twitter is a publicist’s worst nightmare, and there have been several instances in which celebs tweeted prematurely. Paula Abdul used Twitter to tell her fans about her departure from American Idol before Fox could put their spin on the news. Ryan Seacrest was also the first to tweet about NBC chief Ben Silverman’s resignation.
And the list goes on.
In order to avoid these PR disasters, studios are starting to crack down on social networking use.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, both Disney and DreamWorks now have clauses in their contracts that prohibit putting confidential company information or news on social networking sites prior to the release of an official statement.
However, hard as Hollywood may try to spin the news in its favor, tweeting is going to be hard to control.
Broadcasting privileged company information is only one issue that Twitter has created.
With celebrities tweeting their every last partial-thought, publicists have to work overtime to maintain a consistent and positive image of their clients. One wrong tweet can go a long way in shattering a celeb's image.
Plus, there have been more and more instances of tweet wars between celebrities, like the battle between Demi Moore and Perez Hilton, stirring up controversy and opening the door for defamation suits.
Courtney Love knows all too well that chatter on Twitter can have lasting consequences. Love holds the title of the first celebrity to be slapped with a defamation suit because of Twitter for her comments about fashion designer Dawn Simorangkir.
So maybe controlling celebrity tweets is a good plan, but it’s going to be a tough bird to cage.