When it comes to journalism TMZ is a master at getting a juicy scoop and jokers at just about everything else.
Today Miami Beach Police released the first video of Justin Bieber taking a urine test. It's from a weird angle where you can barely make out whats happening. TMZ of course promptly wrote it up, and then in a moment of bizarre dissonance chided MBPD for turning into the Bieber arrest into a reality show.
"This is getting ridiculous ... the Miami Beach PD just released yet another video of Justin Bieber in jail -- this time showing the singer peeing into a cup -- it feels like an episode of 'Big Brother'," writes the website which profits off of sticking cameras in random celebrity's faces and then posting them online in sensational fashion.
"It's like the police are turning Bieber's arrest into a mini reality show -- they claim the singer isn't entitled to privacy in jail ... and they might be right ... but we've never seen anything like this before."
"And we've seen plenty of DUI arrests."
Well, uh, TMZ, it's not technically the Miami Beach Police Department claiming that. It was the media claiming that ...sorta, and yes they are right, at least legally. No 'might be' about it. Though, the media did agree with Bieber's attorneys that images of his penis aren't public record. Other video will be released with his naughty bits censored or blurred out.
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SHOW ME HOW
Florida has notoriously broad public record laws. In this case the jail house footage was turned over to Bieber's defense team, and because of this lawyer's for various media entities argued, correctly, that they are now public record.
TMZ was not represented in the hearing's that determined the videos were indeed public record, but seems to be just as interested in obtaining and displaying the videos as every one else.
While some of the media outlets probably feel like they only demanded the release of the videos out of some sort of high minded ideological freedom of the press fight -- "If they hide Justin Bieber peeing form us what else will they hide?" -- let's be real, they also know dumb celebrity news means big web hits. TMZ is probably the best example of that actually.
So Miami Beach Police really don't have much to do with it. It's the media making a mini reality show out of Bieber's arrest and TMZ is leading the way.