What is the public sphere?
Philosopher Jürgen Habermas’s explains that the public sphere is like an 18th century coffee house, where people gathered to form a ‘space’ in which citizens debate about common concerns and reflect the news. http://culturalstudiesnow.blogspot.com.au/2011/09/jurgen-habermass-public-sphere.html
The world has developed and grown since then and people are now able to interact with one another by commenting, liking and sharing with the click of a button. YouTube is one example of many. YouTube is a video-sharing website that allows billions of people to discover, watch and share originally-created videos. YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform, and inspire others across the globe. By filming yourself and uploading it, the whole world can watch.
But now the mediated public sphere is being attacked for being to trivialised, spectacular (instead of rational) and apathetic. We are too interested in unimportant media. The TV show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” emphasises this tremendously. The reality TV show is about the Kardashian and Jenner family. It started in 2007, back then little was known about them, until now, 9 seasons later with many magazines and social networks talking about them, everyone knows about their lives. So how did they manage to create an entire show? Kim Kardashian and former boyfriend Ray J (whom is a rapper) made a home sex video that leaked to the media. Kris Jenner, Kim’s Mother, decided to make the most of the negativity and start the TV show with Ryan Seacrest as the executive producer.
“Keeping Up with the Kardashians” supports the fact that the mediated public sphere is to trivialised, spectacular and apathetic. We are to court up in the notion that they are ‘famous for being famous’. In the end it’s up to us, the viewers, on how we acknowledge them and how we react to certain popular texts.