Gossip in the information age


Gossip seems like the main form of entertainment these days. 

We’re bombarded with the ups and downs, the personal embarrassments, of entertainers, politicians, and a whole swath of people on pseudo-reality shows whose only reason for fame seems to be self-promotion. People have always been attracted to lurid news. 

In the Middle Ages, instead of Perez Hilton, its purveyors were roving minstrels — the medieval French term for a minstrel, jongleur, actually means “gossip.”

I think it’s worse now because of the information age — the obsessive focus on information to create an illusion of control. We substitute having an opinion about Kim Kardashian’s swimsuit for having an opinion about our purpose in life.

But I mention celebrity gossip only to point out how accepted gossip is in general. I want to focus on real life gossip — talking about people you know behind their backs — people at the office, people you call friends.


What Works: Gossip (Busted Halo)