The aim of this paper is to thoroughly discuss all of these reasons, especially in regards to how the use of public relations was used in this case to keep her career alive; her PR team not only got her out of the crisis but helped to put her back in the spotlight. This is what will be dissertated in the following.
Ashlee Nicole Simpson, born October 3, 1984, is an American pop rock singer and actress. "Originally known for being the younger sister of pop singer Jessica Simpson, Simpson eventually rose to prominence in her own right in mid-2004 through her chart topping album debut Autobiography and the accompanying MTV reality series The Ashlee Simpson Show." (Famous QT, 2006). Quoting herself as a "simple girl in a complex world" (Contact Music, 2006), it was only recently that Ashlee Simpson was on the rise to stardom.
It was on the October 23/24, 2004 episode of Saturday Night Live that Ashlee Simpson was scheduled to perform as that night's featured musical guest. The first song she performed was 'Pieces of Me', which went through without any problems. However, when she began her second song of the night, 'Autobiography', the song 'Pieces of Me' was heard again - including her vocals - before she had raised the microphone to her mouth. It was after this brutal turn of events that Simpson called in to the music video show Total Request Live and "explained that due to complications arising from a 'severe' variation of acid reflux (which had previously been seen in The Ashlee Simpson Show) she had completely lost her voice and her doctor had advised her not to sing." (Wikipedia, 2006).
This incident caused a tremendous amount of trouble for the young singer, as the public began doubting her singing talents at all and labeling her as nothing but a 'lip-syncher'. As well, "Visitors have flooded her site and bashed Simpson on her official web site's forum, the media continues to write articles and industry pros are speaking out about the use of vocal tracks during performances." (Duncan, 2004). There have been many arguments made which have stemmed from this that base around the fact that Simpson is a 'manufactured' artist with little singing talent. "It has also been argued that Simpson's image (instead of her music) is the reason for her continued success." (Wikipedia, 2006).
A public relations team is responsible for Public relations specialists (who are also referred to as 'communications specialists' and 'media specialists', among other titles) serve as advocates for persons. Public relations is the art and science of building relationships between an organization and its key publics; in this case Ashlee Simpson and the public (more specifically, her younger, more targeted audience). Celebrities tend to be fans of the saying that 'any publicity is good publicity', meaning that regardless of whether it is 'good' or 'bad' publicity, it is still good for their reputation, in that it is still a means of getting their name talked about among the public. "If a celebrity says or does something embarrassing, he or she will often turn it into a strength and make it part of his or her 'image'." (Wikipedia, 2006).
However, in this situation, Ashlee Simpson's PR team did have to fix some immediate damage in order to fix the