Celebrity blogs let stars speak for themselves

Mon Nov 24, 2008 7:30pm EST
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By Alex Dobuzinskis

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - In the fast-paced world of celebrity news, stars are increasingly turning to their own Web sites and blog postings to talk about themselves in a do-it-yourself approach to managing their public images.

By speaking directly to fans on the Internet, many stars have upturned the age-old approach to managing a scandal or personal event, which is to have a publicist speak for them.

"You want to have a constant dialogue with your fans, you can't just do a news flash every three months and expect people to understand what you're doing," said Tyler Goldman, chief executive of Buzznet Inc, a network of Web sites and celebrity blogs that recently signed on actress Mischa Barton.

When Lindsay Lohan was pelted with flour this month outside a Paris club for wearing fur, her friend Samantha Ronson, a celebrity DJ, responded with a widely reported blog post slamming the animal rights activist who threw the flour.

Reality star Lauren Conrad of television show "The Hills" this month used her blog to dispute a newspaper story that she threw a fit at a New York airport.

Those stars made their statements on social networking site MySpace, which is one of several spots that stars use to drum up support from fans. Some stars also make public statements on their Facebook page, another social networking tool.

On those sites, stars have profiles just like millions of other Web users. But unlike many lesser known users, what stars say on their page can instantly be picked up by news organizations, a development some celebrities have welcomed.

HOT, BUT OFF THE PRESS   Continued...

<p>Actress Mischa Barton arrives for the screening of Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles' film entry "Blindness" on the opening night of the 61st Cannes Film Festival May 14, 2008. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler</p>