Movie, television, and music celebrities are hounded relentlessly. Photographers follow them to the beach, supermarket, even while they’re driving. Fans stalk them and demand autographs on the street, in airports, while attending a sporting event, anywhere. Tabloids publish the private details of their lives. Celebrities are people, too. Shouldn’t we leave them their dignity and respect their privacy?

No. Normally when someone provides a service, they only provide it to a limited number of people and limited geographic area. They are accountable to their clients, whom can question the quality of their product, ask for support, repairs, follow-up, etc. Seems rather obvious that if you profit from a client, you and your product or service are accountable to him. For tangible products, this normally takes the form of a warranty and help desk.

These celebrities have tapped into a remarkable new medium in which the law of diminishing returns does not apply. Other industries are limited in their ability to profit from a large population because as they invest more capital to reach more people, profits do not increase proportionally. In the music, television, and movie industries, not only does diminishing returns not apply, returns are actually increasing. After the initial investment to produce the song or movie, an infinite number of duplicates of it can be created virtually for free and distributed the world over.

Celebrities have concocted a new market not governed by traditional economic laws in which they can take money from people across the planet without ever seeing them and having no accountability. They are swindlers of epic proportions of which no industry or business has ever fathomed could exist. Take my money and you will sign an autograph and pose for a photo. Take the money of millions of people and live like a king off their dollar and be ready to sign millions of autographs and pose for millions of photos.

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