Friday, May 12, 2006

Anderson yes, Oprah no!

*Names have been changed. *
This is going to be long. (And this is the short version!) I hope you all will bear with me and read this. I think every Anderfan should know what I’m about to say and somehow in my dreams, I guess, I hope Anderson will see this too. He deserves to know what has been happening with his fans too.

A lot of my friends were hurt this week. A LOT! I am angry, sad, mad, furious, frustrated and down right pissed off.

This week there have been a lot of rumblings about Oprah and the show they are doing on Anderson. Well, things went from good to bad, to worse to even worse within a matter of days. Let me tell you a story about Oprah and Anderson's fans....

Sara wrote into Oprah’s show a few months ago and explained how much she admired a group of ladies she was working with and how what they were doing was inspired by Anderson. They had all worked hard to make a difference and this came from all their hearts. They did this to help people in need and that was all that was important to them. Sara was called by the people on Oprah and interviewed about this and she told her story about the work they were doing and then the producer from Oprah called all the other ladies involved along with several other fans that had personal experiences with Anderson. These issues ranged from health issues to suicide attempts. These were all very personal stories and not easy to share with this producer. Mr. Producer explained that they wanted to do something nice for Anderson and show him how much of an inspiration he was to others.

Sara was invited to go on the show and talk about the work she and her fellow friends had done. This was a really great opportunity for her and for the work she had been doing. The word about their campaign would get out and maybe bring more attention to the cause. Laura, who also worked with Sara on her cause was invited to be on the show and they both had photo shoots set up at their house and plans to go to Chicago all ready to go.

Before Laura was invited, another lady, Betty, was also invited to go to Chicago to tell her story. They even got so far with her as to ask her to take time off work and were starting to make plans for her to come to Chicago. Betty has had a rough time of it lately and this made her week, month etc. Well, a few hours later they call her and tell her sorry, but they aren’t doing the segment. The way it was handled was very poor. It seems to me that after doing shows for 20 years the Oprah show would have figured by now how to do this kind of thing without hurting people this way.

In the mean time Mr. Producer also talked to others and found out about the Birthday Donation Drive that was going on for Anderson. He proceeded to take over the Birthday Donation Drive and told Sara and Laura that they were going to present this birthday donation drive on the show. Both of them did not want to do this because they realized it was not how the organizers of the fundraiser for Anderson’s birthday wanted to do it. With the show taping on May 16th, it was only 2 weeks into the donation drive and the organizers (BDO's)didn’t want to spoil the surprise for him when the drive wasn’t even complete. Also, the drive was not about getting publicity or notoriety for one group or one person. It was put together to be a group effort that the entire fan community could come together for. Knowing that and agreeing with that, Sara and Laura felt uncomfortable about presenting the idea at all. Also, they knew that the BDO's didn’t feel comfortable with the way it was being handled. Mr. Producer manipulated the BDO's to get his way. When all was said and done Mr. Producer basically said that if Sara and Laura didn’t talk about the Birthday Drive and the charity they would not be going on the show. Even though the BDO's weren’t happy about the way Oprah’s people went about this, it would not have been fair to deny Sara and Laura (who have worked so hard in their own campaign) the opportunity to go and be on Oprah and to meet Anderson. Basically, it didn’t seem like a big deal to mention the birthday drive, when it seemed far more important to mention a campaign regarding helping people dealing with Hurricane Katrina. Oprah’s people felt strongly about the birthday drive and pushed forward and the BDO's relented and realized that it was more important to keep the peace and allow Sara and Laura their chance with their cause.

Well, a few hours after all of this seemed solved; Mr. Producer calls everyone and tells them the whole segment is scrapped. (Aren’t the tabloids and gossip columns thrilled now! Hope you feel really good that your crappy comments played a part in breaking two people’s hearts). It seems that Mr. Producer tells Sara and Laura that the BDO's spoiled their chance at being at the show. Then tells the BDO's that “it wasn’t their fault, these things just happen. It’s a real shame it worked out this way.” So, not only did they crush people, screw up friendships, blame the wrong people for their choices and basically screw up everything they don’t get to take the blame for any of it. How dare they? Mr. Producer seemed to say several times to people that they didn’t want to cause any problems with friendships etc. Well, too late!

See, we fans are just normal people living our everyday lives. We go to work or to school. We come home and we spend time with our families and we lead our lives. A lot of my Anderfan friends are kind hearted, hard working normal ladies that just wanted to make a difference. They have taken hours of their own time to work on a cause that Anderson has inspired them on. Yes, he’s just a man. We all know he is human but we admire him for the way he reports and the way he makes us want to do something to help others. We all choose to see his kind heart and do things we think would be important to him. We aren’t stalkers or crazed fan, we are just average woman that want to make a difference. Sara and Laura(let’s not forget about Betty) deserved their time and they were screwed out of it. A group of other ladies where screwed over by this too. In the grand scheme of life this may not be important but to them it meant the world. I just hope Anderson knows how they were being treated. Maybe he won’t care but I should hope he’d give a damn about his fans being stomped on and others being manipulated all in the name of good television. Way to go, Oprah!

23 comments:

J. Layne said...

This is still only one side of the story, you realise.

Purple Tie said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Purple Tie said...

Not sure what you're getting at?

eliza said...

Wow. Much drama. I'm one of the people at Anderloads that was not thrilled with the whole thing, but I was only thinking about Anderson. I had no idea they were this far along in the whole thing and were messing with fans. I feel horrible for those women.

I'm really confused about the whole thing. So did Anderson know there would be fans on or did he just think he was going to talk about his book? Also, why exactly was the segment scrapped? It sounds like the producers just blamed people for no reason. And so is the donation drive still on? I still need to donate.

Blech. See, I knew there was a reason this whole Oprah/Anderson pairing gave me a bad feeling. Anyway, thanks for the backstory.

Purple Tie said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Purple Tie said...

Eliza-good questions. I'll answer based on what I know.

-I believe AC did know about what was going to be aired.

-No one really knows why the scrapped the segment. They told "sara" and "laura" that it was because of the donation drive organizers objecting to them talking about that on TV. That is not the case. In the end they consentented to it.

-YES!! The Donations Drive is still on and please donate. Now that "sara" and "laura" got kicked to the curb over this I hope everyone will donate and make it bigger!!

phebe said...

I would like to make it clear to readers of ATA. Lisa and I were never asked to be on the show. These fans mentioned were friends of ours and probably most of you know of them to. They are good people who were treated horribly by the associate producer of Oprah's show. I have no great love for Oprah, but this was so bad it really surprised me.

J. Layne said...

What I meant was: I'm sure there's more to the story than we're hearing.

Purple Tie said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Purple Tie said...

I've got 1st hand knowledge of this story.. I'm just relaying what has happen to close friends. :)

Anonymous said...

Oh. My. God. i had no idea this was going on. what a friggin' mess. that's it--no more oprah for me! i am absolutely FURIOUS at how this was handled---at the ego and attitude presented by the staff on the show--that they can just come in and "take over" something that wasn't theirs to begin with!!!

i really hope that those who were contacted are doing ok, and that whatever damage was done re: friendships is able to be repaired. because, unlike oprah and her minions, WE know that friendships are FAR more important than ratings!!!!!

Rachel said...

Holy Crap, this is BIG. I had no idea. I really would like more details if available. So you think Anderson knew about what was going to be aired? Do you think he did no want it aired? Did the ask for it not to be aired? Does he NOW know about the birthday drive? Do you think they are still going to mention it on the show? Oh boy, I have way to many questions about this whole thing. This just confirms my feeling about Oprah and her staff.
HOLY CRAP!!! I am just shocked. I hope that all the people involved will recover. I know if it was me I would be crushed. I am so sorry this happened.

Rachel said...

One more thing, if they scrapped the segment all together they should of at least allowed "sara" "laura" and "betty" to sit in the audience and maybe a possible "meet and greet" with Anderson after the show.

See I could never be a tv producer, I have a heart. Again, I am so sorry this happened to these ladies.

Rachel said...

I'm Gobsmacked!!!
Dang.

Purple Tie said...

I don't know if Anderson knows about it. He may well. I just hope it hasn't left a bad taste in his mouth after this. (That would be another thing ruined!). As far as tickets, I have to wonder the same thing. It would have been nice of them to offer the tickets to the ladies and I think it was asked but turned down.

sfacfan said...

Ugh, no good can come from Oprah! Sorry for all the drama and everyone who has had to go though it. Boycott Oprah!!

suzanne said...

Granted there are always two sides to every story. But I can tell you first hand that their side did nothing but cause bad feelings and break the hearts of alot of very good people who are so undeserving of the pain that they are feeling now! Especially in the way they went about the whole thing!

It is such a shame that things ended up this way. But we will all get through this situation, just like we have many others...together.

I want everyone to be happy!

Psy said...

I feel so sad for all those involved. I'm sorry you had to go through that.

Ellee said...

To all of you who are hurting over this whole affair, I give my love and hugs and pray this will all work out somehow. I just hope it doesn't hurt Anderson, too. He deserves better than to be in the center of an ugly situation for which he had no responsibility.

Hang in there everybody.

And to all Anderfans everywhere:
Unite And Donate!
So we can give him the best birthday present he EVER got!

Peter said...

I am with Ellee. I have no idea what really happened and I couldn't care less. All I want is for all those AnderFans involved to be okay with themselves and with one another. And I hope Anderson was not in too much discomfort; he must have some idea of what happened and be worried about the whole situation. However little it was he knew I am sure it bothered him a lot!
Oprah is a great person also and I am sure she will take care of things as properly as she could possible do.
As for the Birthday Drive: HURRAH! It is still ON! Keep on doing the good work, girls!

And for a little smile: Ah, the stories behind the stories. One day this will make a very interesting book or an even better suspense movie!

sfacfan said...

This is kinda funny, karma got back Oprah, because they are preempting her Legends Ball for a 1/2 hour speech by the President!

http://www.tvtattle.com/

Quitty said...

(((HUGS))) to my fellow Anderfans.

Mr. Producer sounds like the kind of guy that thinks the only reason people would do things for others is to make themselves look good. He could learn a lot from Anderson like a little compassion and honesty. I agree that they guy could have least offered tickets to the show.

Lisa, your last paragraph is so true. The different campaigns I have seen Anderfans come up with are heartfelt and represent what Anderson is about - getting the story out and compassion for his fellow human being.

xtina said...

I am disappointed for the Anderfans who had only the kindest intentions. I am not surprised though, to read how TV producers treat prospective guests, for I worked in media scene in Chicago, and it won't come as a surprise when I say I met some radio/TV types who weren't pleasant people. Too bad Anderson prob. has no idea of what went down.