Best brand money can buy


You can’t avoid the Bruce-Caitlyn Jenner story if you use social media, watch TV or shop at a grocery store.

Photos and stories wave from every media channel that catches your eye.

When I first saw the busty woman in a white corset on my facebook feed accompanied by a caption with the name Jenner, I skipped it, figuring it’s just another Kardashian-Jenner pseudo-news event.

Turns out the posts were a clever come-on by Vanity Fair to entice readers to check-out Bruce Jenner’s entrance-as-a-woman.

You can find the photos everywhere.

The former Bruce, now Caitlyn, poses in saucy underpants in one image and unfolds her long legs on a couch in another, captured forever by photo doyenne Annie Liebovitz.

June ushered in a landmark event in mainstreaming of transgender culture and media politics, and I predict a year from now we’ll see academics clapping their hands and wringing them over the fuss.

Posts and stories that leapt onto my media feeds saluted Caitlyn, calling her:

News stories reprinted posts of encouragement by the famous and righteous:

Problem is, few ventured into the fray to disparage the public indulgences of a television personality.

One writer says it’s the fear of being branded anti-transgender.

The code is clear: if you don’t hail Caitlyn Jenner you are a louse.

Elinor Burkett makes a thoughtful and compelling argument in The New York Times, called What Makes a Woman, that I urge you to read.

Meantime, don’t be bamboozled by the performance—and I mean performance.

The unfolding story is a landmark case study of public relations branding at its finest, where news features morph into books and plays and talk shows and songs and documentaries and films and speeches and gadgets and…you get the picture.

As for me, I will save the media coverage on Caitlyn Jenner as fodder for my propaganda class, where we study how gold can be spun by folks clever enough to make us believe that what we read is genuine.



About Cynthia Coleman Emery

Professor and researcher at Portland State University who studies science communication, particularly issues that impact American Indians. Dr. Coleman is an enrolled citizen of the Osage Nation.
This entry was posted in authenticity, Bruce Jenner, ethics, framing, journalism, writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Best brand money can buy

  1. hocuspocus13 says:

    Yes and the recently broke Bruce Jenner will pocket over $500 million as Caitlin Jenner


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s