In scanning the headlines about social media engagement and the Oscars, I came across this interesting tool which measures the number of Facebook mentions by the minute and by state during the Oscars. I was interested in watching this reaction because I was curious as to what popular social media reaction was to the many political statements made on this year’s Oscar show. Happily for me, the most highly rated minutes in the show were Lady Gaga’s tribute to the Sound of Musicat 11:30 EST and not some of the political statements. Don’t get me wrong. I am not a Lady Gaga fan and I don’t disagree with the many statement made, I just like my awards shows free of politics and my politics free of awards shows. I was therefore happy to see that the strongest engagement happened around a performance rather than a political statement.
Given our class’ following of the Super Bowl, the Grammys and now the Oscars, the politicization of the Oscare makes me wonder if politics will soon somehow come to the Super Bowl half time show. While this year’s Super Bowl dealt with many serious and important subjects, those topics were addressed in paid for television commercials. I feel the same needs to happend with the Oscars. If celebrities want to make political statements, they need to put their money where their mouths are and buy an ad, contribute significantly to an organization or just get involved with a charity. While I understand the temptation of making a “free” political statement to one of the largest television audiences of the year, I feel somewhat used as a moviegoer and Hollywood supporter by all the politics — no matter what side of the political spectrum you respect.