Dear Good Morning America,
Let me start by saying, I have a huge girl crush on YouTube sensation Jenna Mourey, aka Jenna Marbles, the 26-year-old woman who couldn’t land a steady-paying job after earning her masters degree, but became famous by posting funny videos of herself on the internet. Jenna’s weekly videos range from rants to updates about her life to comedic craziness.
I only recently discovered Jenna, and it was love at first click. She’s an animal-loving, foul-mouthed girl who, although reportedly shy in person, gets in front of her webcam and spews forth all sorts of opinions on the world that, quite frankly, a lot of us are thinking and just don’t have the guts to say out loud. The New York Times recently described Jenna as “The Woman With 1 Billion Clicks” for her widespread internet fame. Although her YouTube channel was new to me, it appears I live under a rock because pretty much everyone I’ve asked has heard of her. The reactions are mixed – some people find her hilarious, while others are turned off by her swearing and sometimes-racy content – but I find her hysterical and have spent more hours than I care to admit watching her videos. So, I was excited this week to see that one of your reporters, Cecilia Vega, sat down to interview Jenna, and was looking forward to learning more about her.
Quite frankly, GMA…to say I was disappointed is an understatement. The footage that actually aired on your show sucked. All Cecilia really did is add a tick counter tallying the times that Jenna said the word ‘ridiculous’ when describing her fame and fans, and asked her questions about whether she thought she “deserved” to have as many fans as she does. Although I read on Jenna’s blog that she spent about an hour talking with Cecilia, nothing of substance made it to airtime. Instead, Jenna was left looking like a ditzy blonde with nothing to say (you can watch the video here).
What the fuck, GMA? If you weren’t interested in hearing how this girl rose to fame by making videos on the internet, then don’t talk to her. Don’t waste your time or hers if you’re not actually interested in reporting about her life. If you don’t find her achievements newsworthy, then don’t put her in a segment.
Airing that “interview” was a major dick move on your part. I get that Jenna’s sense of humor isn’t for everyone, and that’s totally okay with me. What’s NOT okay with me is to feign interest in a person just so that you can interview them for an hour straight, hack up that interview and select a few minutes’ worth of footage (tops) to air out of context, and make your interview subject look like an idiot. Your passive-aggressive mocking of Jenna Marbles would piss me off even if I didn’t adore her, because it was shoddy reporting. You took an opportunity to reveal a more vulnerable side of someone who made her success by being funny, and instead you mocked her and made her look like a joke. Jenna’s fans are fierce, and I’ve already seen Cecilia Vega suffering the much-deserved backlash on Facebook and Twitter.
What we Jenna Marbles fans want, GMA, is for you to stick Cecilia in front of a camera, and tell her to publicly apologize for that ridiculous (yes, I said ridiculous…twice!) report that she broadcasted. If you do that, if you admit that it was a stupid and pointless segment that you shouldn’t have allowed to air, if you force Cecilia to do the right thing and apologize, I think you could probably recover a bit from this misstep. But if you just march ahead, and pretend this never happened, you’re going to offend Jenna’s fanbase….and I must say, it takes a pretty sleazy act to offend us.
Dear Good Morning America,