Like sands through the sandtrap, so are the days of Tiger Woods – at least this is how it has been portrayed in the media. Countless hours have been spent dwelling on the subject by tabloids and pop media icons, most notably not to be overlooked – Nancy Grace. With so much frenzy around the subject, many have begun questioning the man not only in terms of moral integrity, but also athletic ability. Why the uproar and overt concern? Sarah Worley, a professor of Communication, talks about the Tiger Woods news story.
Why is the media so interested in the Tiger Woods news story?
The media cares because they think we care. It’s dramatic, it gets ratings, it’s all emotion, it gets people’s attention, and it’s the stuff that sells.
Why is the American public so interested?
That’s a different reason. This situation brings out the worst in us. Whether we like to admit it or not, we like to see people fall from grace. Tiger Woods has had such a clean reputation up until this. He has kept his private life very private. It fuels peoples’ desire for information when someone is so protective of their privacy. People want to know why he has been guarding his privacy. In the U.S. there has always been this bizarre tension between what is private and what is public in the media. The American public takes cues from celebrities.
How do you think the public would have reacted if this happened 30 years ago?
I don’t think people would care 30 years ago about this type of incident. The thing is, about celebrities, is that any attention is better than no attention. They truly believe that. People who were committed to him before are even more committed to him now. In any case, they end up making more money than they would have if things like this were not made public. It might hurt his marriage but it probably won’t hurt his success as a golfer.
What do you think will happen?
I think it is a non-issue for the most part, and I think it will go away.
-Caitlin Stormont ’10, Juniata Online Journalist