Entertainment

MTV’s New Series ‘Ghosted’ Sparks Discussion About Consent In The Age Of Reality TV

MTV announced a new show called Ghosted: Love Gone Missing, a docuseries much like MTV’s Catfish, where contestants track down the romantic partners who up and ghosted them. If you’re a woman I am sure you’re thinking: this sounds creepy as hell. Yeah, it is. The reaction on social media was nothing short of wary. 

What woman hasn’t darted into a bodega to get away from a man following her? What woman doesn’t know that if she sees another girl in public uncomfortable around a man, that she ought to pretend to know that girl and scoop her away before things take a bad turn? And this isn’t even genuine stalking, it’s just regular street harassment. To be strategically watched and followed at all times by some creep — to be stalked — that’s an entirely new level of harassment.

 None of which should be glamourized or encouraged. However, MTV seems to feel differently.  

So what is “Ghosting”? 

In the digital age of dating apps, ghosting refers to the act of suddenly, and without explanation, cutting off all communication with a romantic partner. This kind of behavior isn’t new or shocking. When everyone you are dating only exists in your phone, you’re bound to be dating multiple people, and you’re bound to lose interest in some of them. 

It’s hard to imagine, but there was a time where people didn’t have portable phones. They would go to meet dates at restaurants and hope they didn’t get stood up. There was no way to reliably reach people, so your great grandparents probably got ghosted too. MTV is now broadening the definition beyond romance for their new reality series to family and friends. 

Why is MTV’s Ghosted: Love Gone Missing problematic?

Ghosted: Love Gone Missing is hosted by The Bachelorette veteran Rachel Lindsay and artist Travis Mills. The hosts will help contestants track down and confront the lovers, friends, and family members who abruptly cut off ties. The obvious problem here is that there is no way for the people, who clearly don’t want to be found, to consent to what essentially amounts to stalking. 

Tracking down someone who consciously made the decision to break away from an individual, seems like a huge violation of their privacy and wishes. The show assumes that the ghosted party is by default the victim, when in reality maybe people don’t want to see these folks for a reason. I’ve ghosted many creepy dudes and toxic people in my day. I don’t need them finding me and putting me on blast on television. 

Get the facts on stalking.

Stalking disproportionately affects women. In the United States, while 1 in 6 women (1 in 7 Latinx women) will deal with stalking in in her lifetime, only 1 in 19 men will, according to the Women and Gender Advocacy Center. About two-thirds of women are typically stalked by former or current romantic partners. Stalking is linked to other forms of intimate partner violence against women, with 81 percent experiencing physical assault, and 31% experiencing sexual assault. 

Even if this show is harmless, what if it triggers someone’s past negative experiences? 

People on social media were not happy with the premise.

One social media user equated the premise with stalking, harassment, and intimidation. It’s hard not to see why they feel this way. Unless the show is completely fake, the premise essentially requires a person’s privacy to be violated. 

If you get ghosted, maybe it’s time for you to move on.

Other users felt it is unfair for a person to be forced to engage with someone they clearly want nothing to do with. That totally makes sense. Would you want that toxic person randomly showing up at your house with cameras ready to air out your dirty laundry? Arguably, for someone to be a contestant on the show they would have to share a one-sided version of somebody else’s personal history without their consent. Would you want your toxic ex telling only their version of the story to millions of people? Would you want them tracking your movements to find you? Would you want to talk to them about it on national television? 

Things can easily go bad. 

It goes without saying that the United States has a gun problem, a toxic masculinity problem, and violence against women problem. If the series were to confront the wrong person, it could genuinely put lives in danger. While I am all for not judging art until I see it, I have to agree with these Twitter users: a bad idea is a bad idea. 

Readers Share Adorable Stories of How Their Parents and Abuelos Met

Culture

Readers Share Adorable Stories of How Their Parents and Abuelos Met

@JulianFdo /Twitter

In the era of hookup culture and online swiping, it’s comforting to look back on the days when dating was a straight-forward affair: boy meets girl, boy likes girl, boy marries girl. End of story. But, times have changed and finding your other half can feel more impossible than every Luckily, we can always look to older generations to give us hope. Their romantic stories of days past are always inspiring.

Readers of FIERCE by mitu shared their cute stories of how their parents and abuelos met. Check out some of our favorite ones below!

1. The old bait-and-switch

@ChrisRAlonso/Twitter

“My abuelos met eachother while they were living in Cuba. Abuelo pretended to be 5 years older than her to get her attention but was actually 2 years younger. He asked her out for ice-cream on their first date.”

2. The Cinderella Story

@JulianFdo/Twitter

“My Dad was rich & Mom poor, he chose her and was disowned by his family and lost his inheritance. They lived happily ever after working their asses off once they came to the United States. Love my parents”. -@mrs.jaypeeonenine

3. Love Letters Gone Wrong

@kathleenlights1/Twitter

“My dad was playing basketball at my moms high school. He saw my mom and asked her if he could write her. 1953. Mom told dad to write his address on the locker that he was using for the basketball game ( girls lockers). He did. On Monday morning the principal of moms school called to complain to the principal of my dads high school and was angry his basketball team had written all over the lockers. My dad and his team were punished and had to go back to my moms school to clean up the lockers. I still have the first letter my dad sent my mom. Mom passed away 10 years ago. I’m 64 and will never forget their love story”. – @dollycardenas50

4. The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach

@cokythelad/Twitter

“My mom and dad both immigrated here from Argentina when they were kids. My dad was 9 and my mom was 2. My dad ended up going to high school with my mom’s little brother and they got super drunk one night together when they were 16. They were scared to go back to their houses (the wrath of a Latin mother!!) so they tried to sleep in a park. It got too cold, so they went back to my uncle’s place and decided to wake my mom up by throwing rocks at her window. At 3am, my mom let her hermanito and my dad crawl through her window. My dad and uncle set up camp in my uncle’s room to sleep everything off, but they were starving. My uncle sent my dad to knock on my mom’s door and ask if she could make pancakes (bc they’re legendary). She thought he was so cute, that she made them pancakes at 3am. They’ve been together ever since (they’re 52 now).” -@bryduca

5. A Tale of Two Heights

@joeytovar_ /Twitter

“My grandparents went to school together. He asked her to be his partner for a dance performance once. Grandpa says he would have asked her sooner but didn’t see her. He’s 6ft she’s 4’10.” -@danhely

6. Love at first sight

@lcarreradesign/Twitter

“My abuelos met each other on a bus in Chicago while Guelo was studying to be a priest. He was a light skinned, fiery haired Mexican man with a friendly smile. Guela’s golden brown Puerto Rican glow was accented by her elegant black ringlets and graceful summer dress. He was smitten the moment he saw her! They conversed about spirituality, faith, and love for something greater than self.Less than one year later, Guelo traded one sacrament for another so that we, our family, could be born.” -@e.m.castro

7. Flirting By Throwing Rocks?

@keithmburke/Twitter

“My abuela would fill up her cantaro with water & whenever she walked by, my abuelo would through small rocks. She hated him for making her dump the water & he loved how beautiful she looked angry”. -@mija_por_favor

8. Life-long dance partners

@babybellabb/Twitter

“My abuelos ran into each other multiple times in one day. They had gotten onto the same bus two different times. Later that night when my abuelo saw my abuela at a dance he decided seeing her a third time that day was a sign and asked her to dance. And they were dancing partners the rest of her life”. -@thetiffanyandco

9. The Bashful Beginning

@leticiasaurus /Twitter

“My dad was friends with my mom’s brothers but he never met her despite always being around. One day, my mom was cleaning the floor outside her house & saw my dad walking from a distance towards the house. She dropped the broom & ran inside. The rest, is history”. -@lifeasingrid

10. The Whirlwind Romance

@ohmy_itsyza/Twitter

“My grandma and grandpa met while being migrant workers. Grandma was 15 and he was 18. My grandma’s sisters were trying to get with my grandpa but grandma wasn’t having it. Their time at that location was almost over and they were going to be separated so after two weeks of knowing each other, they decided to marry. They were married 62 years before my grandma passed.” – @amorettenoel

11. A Military Marriage

@prietitaV/Twitter

“My grandfather was in the marines and was stationed in the Dominican Rep. training the Dominican Air Force. At a party he meet my abuelita and fell in love. He had to asked his superiors for permission to see her, then my great grandfather to court her. They both passed away one right after each other after being 50 years together” -@claudia_teresa1

12. A Meeting of Cultures

@TheHernandezLab/Twitter

“Mi abuela, Soledad, or Chole, was a very attractive and creative woman. Soon after high school she was dancing in a women’s Mexican folklorico troup at the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair. Mi abuelo Modesto, was selling Cuban cigars as a traveling salesman. They met at the Fair, fell in love and eventually had my mom, Rosalia.” -@fridadina

13. An arranged marriage with a happy ending…

@brina_la_nica/Twitter

“In my dad’s side of the family my grandma had to marry my grandpa because a chismosa saw her talking to him outside the grocery story, so my great-grandparents arranged the marriage to restore their honor. In my moms side of the family my grandma had to marry my grandpa to pay off a debt of his family take care of hers after my grandmas parents passed away when she was young. They loved each other and lived happily ever after.#arrangedmarriages” -@iris_herndz

14. An Irresistible Passion

@daiciamestas

“My parents met at a dance in Durango, Colorado. Durango is a college town perfectly located in the middle of my parent’s hometowns. My mother was promised to someone else through engagement, but my father won her heart before leaving for the Navy.” -@daiciamestas

Ally Brooke Borrowed The Hair Clip Selena Quintanilla Wore For Her Tribute On ‘Dancing With The Stars’

Entertainment

Ally Brooke Borrowed The Hair Clip Selena Quintanilla Wore For Her Tribute On ‘Dancing With The Stars’

Former Fifth Harmony member and artist Ally Brooke gave a winning performance on Dancing With The Stars last night. The 26-year-old Mexican singer paid homage to Selena Quintanilla and the 1997 film, starring (future-Oscar-winner)  Jennifer Lopez, Selena. Judges gave Brooke and her professional dance partner Sasha Farber the highest score of the night. Audiences found Brooke’s performance to be an emotional tribute with many saying they cried on Twitter. 

The moment must have been cathartic for Brooke who was branded the “worst” dancer of Fifth Harmony and subjected to online bullying because of it. Brooke joined the cast to take a stance against bullying and show the world what she is really made of — last night she did just that. 

Ally Brooke channeled her hero Selena Quintanilla last night. 

Fans rejoiced as Brooke gave a touching tribute to Selena Quintanilla on Dancing With The Stars. She performed a rumba number to Selena’s “Dreaming of You.” Brooke shares both Mexican and Texas heritage with the famous Tejano singer who passed away in 1995 when Brooke was just two years old.

The theme of the evening was “Movie Night.” Brooke and her pro-partner Sasha Farber took their outfit inspiration from the 1997 film starring Jennifer Lopez. Wearing shimmering metallics and an asymmetrical skirt, the pair gave an intense performance that resonated with the audience. The “Lips Don’t Lie” singer won with the highest score of the night, tying with Kate Flannery, with a score of 24 out of 30. 

Judges were stunned. “I had chills the whole time,” Carrie Ann Inaba said. Brooke gave a shout out to the Quintanillas after her routine. She’s a true stan. 

“I want to give them a shout out, all the Quintanillas. Suzette, we got to see her a few days ago,” she said while showing off a Selena-style pin in her hair. “Selena’s in my heart forever. I hope I made her proud.”

Selena is her #1 inspiration.

Brooke wrote a bilingual post on Instagram, sharing her admiration for the “Como la Flor” singer in English and Spanish.

“Tonight was for you Selena, My #1 inspiration I hope I made Selena’s family and fans proud. This was so beautiful for me to do. The Rumba to Dreaming of You! I love you forever.” Ally wrote. “Esta noche fue para ti Selena, Mi inspiracion #1. Espero haber enorgullecido a la familia y fanáticos de Selena. Poder hacer esto, fue muy hermoso para mi. ¡La rumba, a la cancíon Dreaming of You! Te amare por siempre.” 

The audience stans Brooke’s performance.

“I can’t listen to Selena’s Dreaming of You without tearing up. Aly’s tribute to her was so beautiful,” one user wrote.  

“Watching dwts once again with my mom and she BAWLED watching Ally and Sasha’s dance. She loved Selena a lot and said Ally looked like her while dancing,” another user wrote. 

“Ally made Selena proud in Heaven. It made me cry,” another wrote. 

Ally Brooke has something to prove. 

We’ve all seen the memes. Brooke was regarded as the worst dancer of Fifth Harmony. Throughout her stint in the girl group, fans and haters alike would share GIFs of Brooke’s choreography, singling her out from the rest to poke fun of her imperfect moves.

“HAAAAAAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHA! Shout out to me trying to be extra cute for the Japanese TV show  lol & that choreo thoooo,” Brooke wrote in response to a meme, showing she doesn’t take herself too seriously. 

 While it may seem like innocuous fun, having thousands of people point out you’re not the best at something cannot feel good. Brooke is a singer first, and dancing is an unfortunate requirement of being in a girl group, even if it is not necessarily something everyone is trained in. We can’t all be Normani, Brooke knows that better than anyone else.

“I’m excited to take it on myself,” Brooke told ET of following in Normani’s footsteps, who also appeared on the show. “Obviously [Normani’s] experience on the show, being there was amazing. She had the most incredible time. And she, girl, is like a whole other level. She is so amazing and so talented. She did unbelievable.”

When Brooke premiered on DWTS and received a score of 20 out of 30, she described the experience as nothing short of liberating. 

“That felt honestly liberating for me,” Brooke told Erin Andrews through tears. “I just want to say up here while I have the opportunity, if anyone ever feels like they’re scared to do something because they got made fun of or bullied, I want you to know that you can do it, and I hope that I can be an inspiration and voice for you guys.”