Twitter may be less than four years old, but we’re pretty sure it’s the fastest-growing medium for celebrity scandals. In the past, a star might have had to express his dumb thoughts through a publicist or be caught without underpants by a pervy paparazzo. These days, celebrities (and their followers) have the tools for global embarrassment at their fingertips — and boy, are they using them.
The past few weeks have brought a raft of new Twitter debacles, from Chris Brown’s homophobic rant to Justin Bieber fans’ attack on Selena Gomez to the news that Courtney Love’s tweets have finally resulted in a lawsuit. Read on to see where those items land on our list of the top ten celebrity Twitter scandals.
10. AMC attacks fake Mad Men
There’s brand control and then there’s shooting yourself in the damn foot. Back in 2008, the folks at AMC learned that some fans had created faux Twitter accounts for the Mad Men crew (and their Xerox). This outpouring of fan zeal was, frankly, unacceptable. So the network complained to Twitter, and Twitter disabled those accounts. Tons of bad publicity later, AMC decided to allow the accounts. Now, if you are so inclined, you can even follow the Drapers’ baby son, Gene.
9. Chris Brown loves gay people, says massively homophobic things sometimes
Because he hadn’t yet disgraced himself enough in the minds of right-thinking people when he dared to lay a hand on Rihanna, Chris Brown recently came back for another round of assholery. When B2K’s Raz-B tweeted, “I’m just sittin here Thinking how can n—-s like @ebenet [Eric Benet] & @ChrisBrown disrespect women as Intelligent as @HalleBerry11 [and] @Rihanna,” Brown didn’t exactly take the criticism in stride. Instead, he responded, “@razb2k, n—- you want attention! Grow up n—-!!! Dick in da booty ass lil boy” — an especially classy comment, considering that Raz-B has come forward as a victim of sexual abuse. A few more homophobic tweets followed, and Raz-B chimed in with some cringe-worthy “I know you are, so what am I?”-style digs. Both have since apologized (Chris Brown tell us, “I love all of my fans, gay and straight”), but considering they should have known better in the first place, we’re not terribly impressed.
8. Courtney Love vs. Billy Corgan
Courtney Love and Billy Corgan have a very long history, one that began before their teenage fans were even born. They’ve dated, they’ve hooked up, they’ve collaborated, they’ve been pals — and they’ve fought bitterly. Also, while we love each of them in their own special way (okay, maybe Courtney more than Billy), they are both nuts. So it’s no surprise that they took the crazy to Twitter last April. The tiff started when Corgan let loose a tirade about Love’s parenting. Eventually, Love responded that Corgan reminded her of Bette Davis in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? Point: Courtney.
7. John Mayer explains himself
It was bad enough that John Mayer shot his mouth off — and called his penis a “white supremacist” — in a Playboy interview. When he tried to apologize via Twitter, he made things even worse, claiming that he used the N-word because “the point I was trying to make was in the exact opposite spirit of the word itself.” His conclusion? “[I]t’s time to stop trying to be so raw in interviews.” If for Mayer “raw” means racist, then yes, we would recommend he not show us his true colors. Meanwhile, in September, he quit Twitter. Probably for the best.
6. Justin Bieber fans want Selena Gomez to die
Many times we have tried to convince ourselves that the Beliebers aren’t so bad. They’re just little girls, right? Just as we loved New Kids on the Block and JTT, they love Justin. Right? Well, maybe not. Now that Bieber is dating Selena Gomez, some of his biggest fans are tweeting death threats to the 18-year-old singer/actress. Hey, children? Not okay. In fact, the FBI has gotten involved, and some of these girls may face jail time.
5. Courtney Love gets sued
Ever since the internet has existed, Courtney Love has found new ways to mouth off on it. In the ’90s, there was AOL. In 2010, there was Twitter. Potentially more serious than her battle with Billy Corgan is a new lawsuit again Love by fashion designer Dawn Simorangkir. According to the NME , “Love has allegedly accused Simorangkir of being a drug-pushing prostitute with a history of assault and battery who lost custody of her own child.” Ouch. The designer claims that Love’s tweets constitute defamation and have been detrimental to her career. Considering how much stock most people put in Courtney Love’s opinions, we kind of doubt it.
4. White supremacy is Glenn Beck’s “favorite”
When you’re Glenn Beck, people pretty much assume that you are racist. So it doesn’t exactly help to make a tweet from a white power group one of your “favorites.” Even if it may have been an accident, going mum and deleting your entire list of favorites may not be the best way to deal with the ensuing firestorm of outrage.
3. Scott Baio and his wife flip out at Jezebel
The man who’s been coasting for years on his Charles in Charge cred was fond of espousing his conservative/ignorant views on Twitter. One day, Jezebel reposted his tweet, “Taxes are DONE…That should feed, house & provide medical for a few lazy non working people at my expense. Have a great Monday!” A complete meltdown followed. Eventually, Baio’s wife joined the fray, introducing the insult “lesbian shitasses” into the cultural lexicon.
2. Perez Hilton tweets photo of Miley’s privates
You know what will get you in trouble? Tweeting a photo of an underage girl’s no-no place. Hilton lost advertisers, drew tons of criticism, and could have faced jail time for disseminating child pornography for the stunt — which he later claimed was “fake,” because why would Miley Cyrus ever go out in public without underpants? Then, this fall, inspired by the It Gets Better campaign, Hilton posted a video in which he pledged to be a better person. Here’s hoping he sticks to it.
1. Ice-T, Aimee Mann, and a hot bowl of dicks
It was the tweet heard ’round the world: “Hey @aimeemann stop worrying bout my acting bitch, and worry about your WACK ass music. In the mean time..Eat a hot bowl of Dicks! Ice T .” What in the world could have happened to make the rapper/actor lash out at one of music’s least offensive singer-songwriters? It seems that Mann was watching Law and Order: SVU and offered a critique: “Christ, there is no reason in the world anyone should ever have cast Ice T in a television show.” Eventually, apologies were exchanged, but come on: nearly nine months later, “Eat a hot bowl of dicks” remains one of the funniest insults — and one of the grossest images — of all time.