It is currently Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:59 pm

All times are UTC - 4 hours [ DST ]





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Fame Motive Wants You To Be Star From CNN
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:56 am 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:02 pm
Posts: 6567
Location: Indianapolis IN
How the 'fame motive' makes you want to be a starBy Elizabeth Landau, CNN

October 28, 2009 11:33 a.m. EDT

The need for recognition isn't always negative but can get out of hand, says psychologist James Bailey.STORY HIGHLIGHTS
Pew study: 51 percent of young people said fame was most important for generation
Getting attention gives some people a rush of Adrenaline, creating a "high" feeling
A new book says the proportion of Americans whose primary motive is fame hasn't changed
Fame seeking may come from need to belong, be accepted in a group
(CNN) -- As a large silver balloon floated its way over Colorado, millions of Americans spent hours glued to their televisions wondering if 6-year-old Falcon Heene, assumed to be inside the contraption, was alive.

That night the boy, who had actually been hiding in his family's house, was asked on CNN's "Larry King Live" why he'd stayed hidden.

"You guys said we did it for the show," the boy told his father, Richard Heene.

In the era of reality TV, YouTube, and social media "friends" and "followers," it seems that everyone wants to be a star. People will perform outrageous acts on camera and revel in the attention of strangers.

But what, then, is driving this need for attention from thousands -- or even millions -- of spectators?

The desire to be famous comes from a basic human need to be part of a group, said Orville Gilbert Brim, psychologist and author of the new book "Look at Me! The Fame Motive From Childhood to Death," out this month from the University of Michigan Press.

"It's a yearning to belong somewhere that causes us to seek the fulfillment of attention and approval of strangers," he said.

The Heenes are no strangers to television. They had been chosen for the 100th episode of the reality TV show "Wife Swap," which Lifetime recently announced it would not reair.



Video: Ex: Heene used 'mental warfare'

Video: Bursting the bubble Falcon's mother told authorities last Friday that the balloon episode was a hoax. Robert Thomas, who worked with Richard Heene last spring, told CNN he used to write down Heene's ideas and proposals for reality-show pitches, one of which closely resembled the balloon incident.

Monday, investigators presented their case against the boy's parents to representatives of the district attorney's office of Larimer County, Colorado, according to CNN affiliate KUSA.

The desire for attention may date back to the days of early humans, who lived in small groups. Those who were not approved by a group that protected all of its members would genetically disappear and die off, he said.

"You're left with the population in which almost everybody wants acceptance and approval," he said.

Wanting to feel special and sensation-seeking are probably top motives for trying to become famous, said Susan Fiske, professor of psychology at Princeton University.

Getting a lot of attention gives some people a rush of adrenaline, the "fight or flight" chemical, said James Bailey, psychologist and leadership professor at George Washington University's School of Business. When people experience this "high," they want to have it again and will engage in sometimes extreme or illegal behaviors to try to replicate the feeling.

This need for recognition isn't necessarily negative, and studies have shown that everyone has it in varying degrees, although there is some cultural variation, Bailey said. It becomes problematic when the desire for fame becomes dysfunctional and all-encompassing, he said in an email.

The quest for fame may get out of hand when sudden fame -- like a sudden chunk of money for lottery winners -- has an "intoxicating effect," and suddenly people can't imagine life without fame, he said.

It ends up being kind of a damaged life if you seek to be famous because you can never get there, really, and you can never can get rid of it, and it spoils your days trying.

--Orville Gilbert Brim

RELATED TOPICS
Falcon Heene
Richard Heene
Psychology
"It shifts one's self-perception of who and what one is and what one deserves, and there's little we humans won't do to perpetuate our positive self-concepts," he said.

Still, some surveys show that it's a minority of the population that places fame ahead of all other priorities in life.

Brim examined data from the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research in Storrs, Connecticut, on how important becoming famous is to people. The surveys were conducted over the past four decades. Consistently, about 2 percent of respondents said that fame is the most important thing in life.

That means the proportion of people whose primary life motivation is fame isn't getting larger over time, even though opportunities for people to try for their 15 minutes have exploded through the Internet and reality TV shows, Brim said.

But there is a perception that far greater numbers of people are fame-seekers. A 2006 survey from the Pew Research Center aimed at 18- to 25-year-olds found that 51 percent cited being famous as either the first or second most important life goals for their generation.

Fiske and Bailey said the plethora of opportunities for minor fame on the Internet probably has made more people want to be recognized in that way. "Access to the rarefied air of celebrity is more available," Bailey said.

Fame by way of YouTube and reality television is usually temporary, unlike honors for doing good deeds, Brim said. The number of great achievements to bring about fame have not increased -- what have increased are the "look at me" spectacles that have no other goal than to draw attention, he said.

A desire for fame may also come from being rejected early in life, perhaps by parents, Brim said. But the problem is that no matter what level of acceptance these people achieve, it's never enough.

"That need remains unfulfilled and they can't handle it, and so they turn to trying to become famous as a substitute for the satisfaction for this basic need," he said.

Experts agree that celebrity culture also offers something for people to feel connected to, although Bailey cautioned that recognition is different from relationships. Still, the rise of Internet portals on which people can become minor celebrities are partly driven by the need to create and maintain relationships, he said.

The fame motive and the desires for money and power are distinct, although they are often connected, he said. The fame motive can be a way to get money and power, and vice versa, Brim said.

Many people whose primary motivation in life is fame are met with much disappointment because they always want more, and few can be recognized as widely as they want, he said.

"It ends up being kind of a damaged life if you seek to be famous because you can never get there, really, and you can never can get rid of it, and it spoils your days trying," he said.



Share this on:
Mixx
Facebook

Twitter

Digg

delicious

reddit

MySpace

StumbleUpon


FOLLOW THIS TOPIC

We recommendHow the 'fame motive' makes you want to be a star
Affidavit: Balloon Boy's Mom Confesses to Hoax People.com
Papers: Wife says 'balloon boy' was hoax
More Health
Volunteer crew hopes to spread healing, keep it green
How the 'fame motive' makes you want to be a star
Asthma and swine flu: Here's what to do

Log in or sign up to comment
soundoff (9 Comments)
Show: Newest | Oldest | Most liked
Showing 9 of 9 comments
Sort by Popular now Best Rating Newest first Oldest first Unsubscribe Subscribe by RSS
DrewJW61
DrewJW61 And how many comments did you post to CNN today yourself, Billy, seeking your 15 minutes? Ha, you make your own point!
48 minutes ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse Guest
Guest
That psychologist --along with the headline and premise of this inane article --are idiotic. There is no inborn human need to be famous. People who want to belong to a group simply join a group. The beings who truly do good for others, whether as a group or individually, ignore and even abhor recogn ...more
That psychologist --along with the headline and premise of this inane article --are idiotic. There is no inborn human need to be famous. People who want to belong to a group simply join a group. The beings who truly do good for others, whether as a group or individually, ignore and even abhor recognition for their actions. People who crave attention who otherwise don't receive admiration (i.e. understanding and appreciation of their good works) in their daily lives, amongst friends and family, however, do seek fame. And those who ACHIEVE fame don't usually even seek it; they EARN it through sheer talent and ability to communicate and create. less
53 minutes ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse gracefoster
gracefoster Nonsense. Having no privacy and having everyone judge you before they know you is completely abnormal and unhealthy and no well adjusted person would seek fame.
1 hour ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse BillyBobEarl
BillyBobEarl When you are secure with yourself, you don't need to seek the spotlight. Only the most insecure devote their lives to seeking fame. The relationship between mental health and famous people is on an inverse curve. Just look at Hollywood. Those people are a MESS!
1 hour ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse redplanet
redplanet
People want to be heard, to be listened to. Parents talk over kids, shush them, and otherwise make them not heard. Then as kids grow up there are always adults telling them what to do: pay taxes, don't eat this, see the doctor...and sometimes we know more what is best for us than an expert. It's dis ...more
People want to be heard, to be listened to. Parents talk over kids, shush them, and otherwise make them not heard. Then as kids grow up there are always adults telling them what to do: pay taxes, don't eat this, see the doctor...and sometimes we know more what is best for us than an expert. It's distressing to see people think doctors know anything about, say, vitamins, when they were never taught it. Experts sometimes aren't. Talked to a therapist lately about your problems? There is a big disconnect between what these people say and what's really true.

This leads to a culture of narcissism. Parents, listen to your kids when it matters. less
3 hours ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse tivocam
tivocam
It's a generational desire. I'm 28 and a member of Gen Y and I can absolutely tell you that my generation is obsessed with being noticed. Part of it comes from over-recognition when were kids. Everyone walked away with a trophy... we all felt we deserved something. In reality, many of us were essent ...more
It's a generational desire. I'm 28 and a member of Gen Y and I can absolutely tell you that my generation is obsessed with being noticed. Part of it comes from over-recognition when were kids. Everyone walked away with a trophy... we all felt we deserved something. In reality, many of us were essentially taught that we were entitled to anything we wanted. Funny how many people from my age group are on anti-anxiety meds.... we can't handle the real world pessure of actually having to work and deal with stress and rejection of our ideas when our entire childhood consisted of inclusion and reward. less
5 hours ago | Reply | Like | Report abuse
BillyBobEarl
BillyBobEarl Kudos to you on your generational self-awareness, however.
1 hour ago | Like | Report abuse BillyBobEarl
BillyBobEarl
Thanks for acknowledging that reality that your generation is hell-bent on being noticed. The problem is, most in your age group want to be noticed whether they do something noteworthy or not. Of all the "blogging" that goes on, the vast majority is just plain drivel. WE DON'T CARE WHAT YOU HAD FOR ...more
Thanks for acknowledging that reality that your generation is hell-bent on being noticed. The problem is, most in your age group want to be noticed whether they do something noteworthy or not. Of all the "blogging" that goes on, the vast majority is just plain drivel. WE DON'T CARE WHAT YOU HAD FOR BREAKFAST! That isn't newsworthy, no matter WHAT your parents told you about every single thing you do being "special". It isn't. less
1 hour ago | Like | Report abuse
pumpkinspice
pumpkinspice
I'm not sure the baloon boy thing is a craving for fame... It could easily be a craving for attention. There are those people who just can never get enough. The baloon boy thing seems more like: M√ľnchausen syndrome by proxyA lot of people lead very lonely lives. This is because our 'electronic age' ...more
I'm not sure the baloon boy thing is a craving for fame... It could easily be a craving for attention. There are those people who just can never get enough. The baloon boy thing seems more like: M√ľnchausen syndrome by proxy

A lot of people lead very lonely lives. This is because our 'electronic age' while fast and efficient separates us socially. Instead of seeking entertainment from friends and families we seek the tv and video games. If people were more properly socialized healthy outlets for attention could be found. The answer? Our culture needs to 'go back to basics', kill tv, and become more community driven like we were intended. Until we do, outrageous bids for attention from the socially needy will become the norm. less
11 hours ago | Reply | Like | Report abusePost a comment
Log in or sign up to comment

_________________
Sometimes running the Mularkey offense makes me feel like I'm in a prison.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fame Motive Wants You To Be Star From CNN
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:58 am 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:02 pm
Posts: 6567
Location: Indianapolis IN
Kind of reminds me of those 2 nuts Jon and Kate Gosslein doing anything to keep their 15 minutes of fame going. I can't believe people still are interested in those 2. Wonder what Octomom is doing with all those kids?

_________________
Sometimes running the Mularkey offense makes me feel like I'm in a prison.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fame Motive Wants You To Be Star From CNN
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 11:32 am 
Offline
Purveyor of Truth & Justice
Purveyor of Truth & Justice
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 23, 2004 3:03 pm
Posts: 25930
Location: North Carolina
It's not the people that are to blame, it's the media. And as a result the consumers, like you and me.

With the explosion of reality television and media over the past decade, it's so much easier for people to get their 15 minutes of fame nowadays.

There is so much media in this global society nowadays. It's no coincidence that this media explosion has coincided with the internet.

You and I may not, but most people in this country eat up this tabloid stuff.

_________________
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fame Motive Wants You To Be Star From CNN
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 1:44 pm 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:02 pm
Posts: 6567
Location: Indianapolis IN
Good point.I agree the media keeps wanting to sell headlines.Now you can be famouns without really having any talent,go figure.

_________________
Sometimes running the Mularkey offense makes me feel like I'm in a prison.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 4 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to: