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George Clooney has come to the defence of his friend, Meghan Marrkle.

The Duchess of Sussex has been getting harsh treatment from the media since she joined the Royal family and that scrutiny has only accelerated since she married Prince Harry and announced that she was expecting their baby.

Now, her friend and Hollywood actor George Clooney has something to say about what she has endured – even comparing her treatment by the public to that of the late Princess Diana.

While promoting his upcoming Hulu series Catch-22, he said, ''They’re just chasing Meghan Markle everywhere, she’s been pursued and vilified.''

The 57-year-old continued, ''She’s a woman who is seven months pregnant and she has been pursued and vilified and chased in the same way that Diana was and it’s history repeating itself.”

He added, ''We’ve seen how that ends. I can’t tell you how frustrating it is to see that,” referring to Princess Diana’s fatal car crash in 1997 during which she was being chased by paparazzi.

His comments come after a report suggested he would be godfather to Harry and Meghan’s baby.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Kensington Palace (@kensingtonroyal) on

He said, ''Oh yes, I’ll be godfather of the royals apparently. No!”

He continued, ''I’m a father of twins, I have enough sh– to deal  with – literally!” 

Meghan and Harry announced their pregnancy in October 2018 and their little one is due to arrive at the end of April or beginning of May.

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According to research from Nielsen, 63 percent of people want to see Ireland's sportswomen honoured as national heroes in the same way as sportsmen.

Irish journalism focused on women in sport is in dire need of improvement, and today Investec has launched it's inaugural 20×20 Media Awards to recognise excellence in this field.

The 20×20 Nielsen Sports Study found that just a shocking three percent of print and four percent of online coverage was dedicated to women’s sport in Ireland: it's time for improvements.

The Federation of Irish Sport presented Investec as a sponsor for 20×20 in order to provide more support for women in sport.

Greater cultural recognition is one way to start; broadcast, print and online journalists are being invited to submit entries on women in sport to it's latest awards competition.

Investec has curated an expert panel of judges for their 2019 Media Awards;

Anna Kessel as chairwoman; Mary O’Connor, CEO of the Federation of Irish Sport; Michael Cullen, CEO of Investec; Sarah Colgan, CEO of  Along Came A Spider and 20×20 co-founder and Gordon D’Arcy, former Irish International rugby player.

Nielsen Sports were commisioned by 20×20 to monitor media coverage of sport, which resulted in quite discouraging statistics. 

20×20 has estimated television coverage of women's sport is less than 12 percent, and 59 percent of Irish people believe that the media should do more to promote female sport.

57 percent of people want to see equality in female and male sporting role models in the media, and 63 percent of the public would love to see Irish women being given the same 'national hero' status as men.

Anna Kessel, chairwoman of Investec 20×20 Awards said: “In celebrating women's sports journalism the Investec 20×20 Media Awards are sending out a very powerful message: women's sport is amazing, and of value."

"For every sports editor who's ever wondered if it's worth covering; to every coach who questioned whether girls needed encouraging, and to every sports’ governing body deliberating over how much to invest in their female athletes this year, this initiative makes it clear: women's sport matters."

The objective of 20×20 is to increase the level of coverage of women’s sport across media by 20 percent by the end of 2020, according to its founder, Sarah Colgan.

Gowan girlos, you deserve a medal. Like Katie Taylor-sized medal. Multiple medals, actually…

amy poehler soccer GIF

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Many celebrities faced plenty of unfair treatment in 2018. You might be surprised to find out which among them was thought to have the most unfair year.

 

Will 2019 Be Any Better for These Celebs Who Had it Rough in 2018?

Being a celebrity isn’t always about glitz and glamour. Sometimes, it’s not easy to be a well-known figure. Life can be just as unfair to actors, sports stars, politicians and other celebrities, in spite of the riches, fame and power they might have.

In fact, 2018 proved to be a rather unfair year for a number of high-profile personalities, and you might be surprised to find out who Brits felt were the ones treated the most unfairly.

Image; Quartz

PlayOJO recently conducted research highlighting the people treated most unfairly in 2018.

The names that made their “Top 10 most unfairly treated people of 2018” list were selected by a panel of media experts from the world of entertainment, sports, business and politics and included people such as Donald Trump, Naomi Osaka, Geriant Thomas, Caster Semenya and Laura Anderson.

However, the results of this nationwide survey, which involved 2,000 UK adults, revealed that more than one famous Brit made the unfair poll.

Among these Brits was Prime Minister Theresa May, who took the top spot and was voted the person who was treated the most unfairly in 2018.

1. Theresa May had no support and the most unfair 2018

It might seem surprising that May was voted the most unfairly treated person of 2018, considering she isn’t exactly well liked and doesn’t have many fans among the British public and even her own government, due to her arguably terrible job with the Brexit negotiations.

However, at the same time, there’s no denying that the PM faced a very difficult year and did so with very little support.

That said, May’s 2019 hasn’t started any easier as she has already suffered one of the largest parliamentary defeats of a British prime minister in the democratic era when her latest Brexit deal was rejected by a resounding majority of 230.

The 230-vote margin of defeat was easily the worst suffered by any Government in a meaningful division since at least WWI.

In normal circumstances, such a defeat would be enough to force a PM from office. However, lucky for May, she has managed to survive a second no-confidence vote.

2. Colleen Nolan quits job due to online abuse

Theresa May wasn’t the only Brit to make the unfair list. Another English celebrity that received sympathy from voters was Colleen Nolan.

There’s no question that Coleen Nolan had a tough 2018 after fans of Kim Woodburn and the Loose Women show attacked her online with abusive messages.

The abuse started after the English television personality, author and singer reportedly “bullied” her former Celebrity Big Brother housemate Kim Woodburn on Loose Women.

Woodburn was reduced to tears and fled the show, later calling for both Colleen Nolan and Nolan’s sister Linda (who was also on the show and took part in the bullying) to be fired.

The viewers apparently didn’t like what they saw either and verbally attacked Nolan online to the point that Nolan quit Loose Women and even cancelled her tour because she was so shaken by the experience.

Although Nolan’s treatment of Woodburn certainly wasn’t her most shining moment, many agree that she didn’t deserve the cruel online backlash.

3. Ryan Thomas punch-gate debacle

Speaking of former Celebrity Big Brother housemates, actor Ryan Thomas is another Brit that made the unfair list and was the runner up to May.

Although Thomas won the CBB show, he was nearly kicked off due to false physical abuse claims made by fellow housemate and ex-lover Roxanne Pallet.

The show received a record number of complaints, many of which were directed at Thomas. Before the truth about the situation was revealed, the “punch-gate” controversy was very hard on Thomas, who at the time, felt that his career was over.

Do you agree with the 2,000 surveyed Brits and think that these celebs were treated unfairly in 2018? If not, who do you think was the most unfairly treated celebrity last year?

Feature image: dailytelegraph.com.au

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Claire Foy has gained international recognition for her powerful portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown, Lisbeth Salander in The Girl in the Spider’s Web and now as Janet Armstrong in First Man.

As part of her acceptance speech for the #SeeHer recognition gong at the Critics' Choice Awards, she delivered a moving statement about the complexities of female roles.

She became the third actor to receive the accolade, which was launched by the Association of National Advertisers in 2016.

She followed in Viola Davis' and Gal Gadot's footsteps, winning the award which aims to increase the number of accurate depictions of women across the media.

Foy made sure to speak about how numerous people refer to her role in the 2018 Neil Armstrong biopic First Man as "just the wife", which she strongly opposes.

“I’ve had the opportunity to play some extraordinary women, for all sorts of reasons, and none more so than Janet Armstrong,” Foy said.

"She lived her life with such bravery and resilience and determination and love," she added.

“I can’t tell you how many times during the making of the movie and in the press tour that people said to me, ‘Well that part is normally the part of just the wife’." 

“And there’s no such thing as ‘just the wife’.” This statement got rapturous applause from the star-studded audience, clearly emphatically agreeing with the British actress.

Foy illustrated that it’s an actor’s responsibility to question who they portray, how they portray them and “how we want people to see themselves on screen” to create change.

Viola Davis presented Foy with the award, and Foy explained how she’d previously watched Davis’ acceptance speech for the 2016 #SeeHer award in preparation for her own.

She was eternally inspired by the outstanding Widows actor’s words that “the greatest privilege in your life is to be who you are.” WE STAN.

The actress concluded by saying she hopes the #SeeHer award will give her “encouragement” to be “brave enough to face and see myself”, and that she hopes it will also help others to do the same.

*Passes the tissues around the office*

im not gonna cry emmy awards GIF by Emmys

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Hailey Bieber has anxieties, just like the rest of us.

The model and new wifey to Justin Bieber himself opened up to her fans via her Instagram account last night, vowing to get far more open about her troubles online.

"Stepping into 2019 I want to be more open, I want to be more open about the things I struggle with, and be able to be more vulnerable," she described in the post, below.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Hailey Rhode Bieber (@haileybieber) on

"I’m a 22 years old, and the truth is no matter how amazing life may look from the outside I struggle…"

Battles with confidence appear to be a daily dilemma for young women, with society continuously placing pressure to look perfect on their shoulders.

"I’m insecure, I’m fragile, I’m hurting, I have fears, I have doubts, I have anxiety, I get sad, I get angry," she continued. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Hailey Rhode Bieber (@haileybieber) on

Hailey's honesty revolves around her self-esteem, describing how every single day is a "confidence battle";

"I have had more days than I can count where I’ve found myself scrolling through Instagram comparing myself, comparing my looks, feeling like I’m not good enough feeling like I lack so many things and really struggling to be confident in who I am because I constantly feel like I’m just not good enough." 

"I'm a human.. I'm a young woman, I'm learning who I am and, it's REALLY FREAKING HARD. It's hard finding who you are, but what's even harder is being picked apart and compared to other women while trying to do that," she opined.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Hailey Rhode Bieber (@haileybieber) on

Hailey explained at the conclusion of her post that she's not "writing this for a pity party," rather for her fans to see their own beauty inside and out.

"It would be incredible if other young girls and women could find it in themselves to lift each other up, to stop making other women who are struggling JUST LIKE THEM, feel incompetent and less than," she asked for her fans to see the positive side.

"We ALL have flaws, and that will never change. What I do know is, God made us individuals for a reason, with our own beauty, our own personalities, and our own story because there's a specific plan and purpose for each and every human created and he makes no mistakes!!"

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Hailey Rhode Bieber (@haileybieber) on

The famous model has taken social media breaks before, as well as opening up about the difficulties of Instagram negativity and trolling;

"Whenever I take breaks from it I feel so much better so much happy as a person.. the second I come back on I get immediate anxiety, I get sad and I get worked up," she typed in one of the images.

The constant media attention and focus on her appearance unsurprisingly takes its toll.

"The negativity screams so loud."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Hailey Rhode Bieber (@haileybieber) on

Baldwin has spoken about the impact of social media on her relationship to Sorry singer Justin Bieber;

 "It's hard to focus on your well being and mental health when each time you open Instagram someone is tearing apart your job, or your relationship or essentially any of the things in your life that are positive."

She finished, "I won't let people make me feel like I'm doing something wrong by enjoying my life and being happy."

You go girl, everyone deserves to feel confident and positive in their own skin, no matter how big a celebrity they are.

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On November 29th, Deborah Ross of The Times wrote what can only be described as a SCATHING article about influencers which began like this;

"I have a dream. It is not a big dream. I am not Martin Luther King. I only do dreams on a small scale, so it is a small-scale dream and my small-scale dream is this: might there be any way we could do a find and replace on the word “influencer” so it is replaced by “detestable freeloader” wherever it appears? So we all know what, in fact, we are dealing with."

Yikes. To add to the drama-fest, YouTuber and Blogosphere's Influencer of the Year 2018 Melanie Murphy has responded. 

We have to say, Murphy makes some noteworthy points;

Starting off her 13-minute YouTube video with a cool "Okay Deborah, calm down", she proceeds to explain the hypocrisy behind Ross' points with a level of clarity which is hard to deny.

Ross essentially slated influencers in her article, describing them as 'detestable freeloaders', essentially people who deserve to be hated because they receive complimentary items and give nothing in return.

Murphy responds by issuing the point that the media in general is funded by advertising and marketing, for example, on the bottom of Ross' article had a sponsored post, without which the article possibly would never have been read.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Melanie Murphy (@melaniiemurphy) on

Promotion and marketing absolutely surrounds us, from celebrities such as David Beckham for Adidas, Beyoncé for Pepsi, Justin Timberlake for McDonalds, Jessica Simpson for WeightWatchers, Brad Pitt for whatever cologne he's feeling that day, Julia Roberts for Lancôme, Hannah Witton for PlayStation, Holly Willoughby for Marks & Spencer etc etc.

It's inescapable. However, just because they receive free objects doesn't mean that they give nothing in return. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Happy Holidays from the House! @house99 #House99 #HomeToYourNextLook

A post shared by David Beckham (@davidbeckham) on

The issue which Murphy takes with Ross' article is the sheer hypocrisy as well as the generalisations which she makes. She places every influencer in the same category, when many of them promote noble causes such as LGBT+ charities and organisations, cruelty-free and paraben-free beauty products, health foods, nutrition, sexual health organisations, disability and accessibility rights, chronic pain activists, and more.

Jameela Jamil's i_Weigh movement has become hugely successful, and empowers people to weigh themselves on their overall worth as a person rather than their body mass index. Jamil suffered from an eating disorder for years, and now uses promotion and Instagram to create a unified group of people who value and respect themselves. She also is a major campaigner for banning airbrushing.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by I Weigh (@i_weigh) on

Melanie Murphy claims that every successful creative has the support of brands behind them, and receive freebies. Many of them self-fund their projects, and use the money for other causes, others simply give away any freebies which they receive.

Murphy also points out that just because they gain complimentary products does not mean that those people aren't extremely hardworking. Many influencers balance their life online with their family and a side-job.

"95% of what I show, what I wear, I pay for myself," she claims. Through advertising and word of mouth, companies can use influencers for their branding, but this doesn't undermine the level of thought which goes into choosing which brands to work with.

Murphy works with Always pads to talk openly about periods, Barclays, who sponsor Pride, a show which explores bisexuality, PicMonkey, Wella for hair dyes which work against allergies, Holland and Barrett for cruelty-free health and nutrition products.

Numerous influencers and their agents are hugely picky about who they work with, the brands must make sense for the influencers for them to collaborate with them.

"I'm always so bloody proud of my paid-for content, always. The money these brands pay me enables me to write a novel and work on more artsy things like short films which I invest in myself but don't get money back."

According to the Youtuber, the media wouldn't survive without branding and advertisements. From YouTube ads to websites, podcasts, radio, television, newspapers and magazines, advertising is saturated in our industry.

For Deborah Ross to call followers of influencers 'morons' is entirely unfair, from Melanie's point of view;

"Under-researched drivel such as this which contributes to the negative rhetoric that surrounds bloggers and influencers, thousands of hard-working people. Some of which juggle a family or another job."

Many believe for Ross to declare that influencers have done nothing to merit this lifestyle is flawed and reductive, Murphy herself demonstrates a great engagement because of how she chooses brands to work with;

"I never try sneak anything in, I'm never shady. I am lucky and I'm very grateful, I don't swan around."

Lastly, Murphy places emphasis on the fact that YouTube is a community which supports one another, they collaborate and shout each other out and lift each other up. In the journalism industry, there is minimal collaboration and no support between competing publications;

"You sit and write and you get aid to do that, there was a time where people would scoff at your job and say that that's not a real job. We actually support each other. You're not going to see The Times supporting an article from another publication."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

It's International Day of Disabled Persons. This year's theme is “Empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring inclusion and equality.” I think about this every day. Empowerment, inclusion, equality. It's in every story I tell. In every adventure I have. Every relationship I am in has navigated it to some extent. The other day I was talking to a friend who said, "I don't even see you as disabled, you just sit a lot for someone so active.” "I think I know what you mean, but I am disabled, it's not bad to me to be seen as disabled. When people say that, it's like they're saying, in order to accept you, I have to separate you from this thing I have a problem with. 

A post shared by Erin Clark (@erinunleashes) on

She describes the loneliness which perpetuates society, and how YouTube can be used as escapism, or for self-help, for comedy, entertainment, advice or even just to connect;

"A lot of people are lonely and it's a beautiful thing to be able to connect with people through words through a lens. Families are smaller, the Church has collapsed, community has gone to shit. I feel like through my monthly blogs I encourage people to connect with their real-life friends and family"

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Róisín (@r0_is_in) on

As Murphy points out, building a following of thousands or millions doesn't just happen for no reason.

'Detestable freeloaders' aren't just empty vessels of advertisers; they're entertainers, they're singers, actors, writers, comedians, models, creatives, editors, lighting experts, agents and so much more.

Do you agree?

Feature image: teneightymagazine.com

Article by Kate Brayden

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Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said that he supports President Donald Trump's criticism from the press. 

The remarks were reportedly made at a private lunch held in New York on Monday. 

The event, hosted by Irish Consul General Ciaran Madden, was for young Irish workers across various sectors in New York City.

According to The Times,  when asked what he thought of Trump's attack on the US press, Leo said that the media was not interested in the truth but only in getting a story.

He was particularly scathing of political journalists, who he claimed were more interested in gossip rather than what the Government is actually doing. 

Reportedly a heated exchange followed as other members pointed out that the media had unearthed the Weinstein sexual assault allegations among other controversies. 

Social media had a strong reaction to Leo's comments, as some agreed with the Taoiseach while others were outraged that he had sided with Trump. 

Some were quick to jump to his defence, saying, ''you can criticise the media while supporting free speech. Taoiseach's points taken out of context imo.''

Others were not so understanding, stating that the whole episode was a ''strange, unsettling criticism of the media by our Taoiseach.'' 

According to RTE News, NUJ Irish General Secretary Seamus Dooley said it was ''bizarre'' that the Taoiseach would side with such a divisive political figure. 

Leo later said that his comments were ''taken out of context.''  

A spokesperson said that the Taoiseach "believes that a free, fair and balanced press is a cornerstone of our democracy".

Judging by the furore on Twitter, it seems like Leo might have a bit more explaining to do…

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With the media constantly giving us a false image of what women should look like, plenty of girls feel pressured to look as good as celebrities. They think that revealing a bit of extra cleavage and wearing overly tight clothing will get them there.

But while celebs may get away with it, we can’t. Here are some ways you can steal the spotlight without overdoing it:

Bright colors
Wearing colors that pop is a sure way to draw people’s attention. Electric blues and fuchsias are perfect.

Know your colors
Wearing colors that flatter you is another sure way to attract attention. Dress for your skin tone and eye color and watch how you’ll shine.

Accessories
With little effort, you can automatically draw attention to your face by wearing earrings or a necklace. Extra pieces like shawls, hats or sunglasses are what separate a normal outfit from an eye-catching one.

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