Karl Puschmann is an entertainment writer for the New Zealand Herald.

Karl Puschmann: Kim, Kanye and (yawn) Taytay - do we care?

Celeb spats can rot your brain — but it’s the price we pay for connectivity.
It's hard to believe this is anything other than a publicity stunt. Photo / AP
It's hard to believe this is anything other than a publicity stunt. Photo / AP

Do you remember where you were when you first heard the news? It was everywhere. Inescapable and exhaustive. Stop the press! Tweet the tweets! Update the status! Kim, Kanye and Taylor are feuding! Again!

ZZZzzz.

If you were somehow lucky enough to miss the ins-and-outs of what was going on, don't worry about it. Live your life. Be happy and don't change whatever it is you're doing with your time. Because this ever prevalent and increasingly frequent nonsense just takes up valuable space in your brain, giving you nothing back in return except a whole lotta stupid.

Sadly, I wasn't clever enough to avoid hearing every trivial and mundane piece of minutiae that surrounded Kimye vs Taytay part deux. I absorbed everything that was going on through osmosis.

As, I'd wager, you did.

The minute after Kim Kardashian posted her choppy and obviously edited "video evidence" of Taylor Swift on the phone to Kanye West approving the scandalous punchline of his Famous lyric my social media feeds went plum crazy.

Firstly, the feud was reported and tweeted about by news outlets. And not just the crappy ones. Real ones. Respectable ones. Then came the barrage of well-written and considered op-eds being shared around on Facebook. These ran through everything from the validity of each party's claims right through to the legalities of Kim's undisclosed phone recording.

Then finally, the flood of everyday people throwing their two-cents in and pledging allegiance to either Team Kimye or Team Taylor.

Our connected world is great when something interesting or vital or funny is happening. But, boy, it can really be a drag and a snoozefest when this guff starts clogging it up.

Since the feud broke out a mere four days ago - and doesn't it feel an eternity ago? - I've thought long and hard on how to not have my head filled with this junk. The only solution I could come up with was to permanently log off Facebook and Twitter, and then go outside and burn both my computer and my phone. It really is the only way.

Update the status! Kim, Kanye and Taylor are feuding! Again! Photo / AP
Update the status! Kim, Kanye and Taylor are feuding! Again! Photo / AP

Sure, I could carefully and painstakingly curate my social media feeds in a futile attempt to rid them of these rogue gossip-mongers but what am I gonna do? Unfollow every news outlet in the world? Every 'zine and site that I read? All the peeps that I know? I'd have to unfollow everyone and everything so this really isn't a feasible option.

Nope, the sad reality is that learning all about the high school style, he said/she said bullshit of feuding celebrities is just the price I have to pay to stay connected in this modern world of ours.

Besides, it's not like pop feuds are anything new. Musicians are a bitchy bunch, constantly bickering and throwing toys, punches and, when things have gotten really out of control, bullets.

Even the greats weren't above a good spat. Has there ever been a more wildly violent and seethingly bitter question asked than John Lennon spitting "How do you sleep, you c***?!" to Paul McCartney during his song How Do You Sleep? No. No, there hasn't.

Being the music of the US' gang-infested streets, hip-hop's feuds tend to escalate dramatically and have resulted only in tragic loss. The East Coast vs West Coast beefs of the early to mid-90s saw Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur both gunned down in their prime by drive-by shooters.

These are just two extreme examples, but really, we could make a Top 100 Pop Feuds list and still not cover them all. Some of the big names who've been involved in beefing over the years include: Jack White, Justin Bieber, Madonna, The Black Keys, Elton John, Miley Cyrus, Neil Young, Rihanna, Noel Gallagher, Dr Dre, Iggy Azalea, Dave Grohl, Drake ... Truly, everybody's at it.

But these real feuds, where the people involved were properly pissed off with each other, gives this whole, "no, you're a liar" feud some much-needed context. For a few days the world's media - social and actual - couldn't shut up about these two squabbling artists and the reality TV personality behind it.

It's less a feud and more a brilliantly calculated and executed marketing campaign for the new season of Kim's reality TV show and some solid brand awareness for the other two. Given how media savvy these three players are I doubt any of them are losing too much sleep about featuring prominently in the world's media. Despite whatever they may be saying about it.

And don't worry that I haven't mentioned any of the screening details for Kim's show. Thanks to our connected world you're gonna hear all about what happens anyway. Even if like me, you really don't want to.

- NZ Herald

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Karl Puschmann is an entertainment writer for the New Zealand Herald.

A pop culture junkie, Karl has spent his career writing about the important things in life; music, film, television, comics and video games. He was editor of a popular music rag for five years and has since written regularly for every local culture/arts/lifestyle magazine worth a damn. His recent expansion into travel writing has flung him far, far from the comfort of his couch and into that bewildering place known as the ‘outdoors’. He is also currently endeavouring to make sense of the world by reviewing it over at critikarlreviewstheworld.com

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