No Ellen DeGeneres’s wife, #IStandByEllen won’t be a thing
Have you heard the rumors Ellen DeGeneres is meaner than her TV persona? Of course you have, everyone has by now. However, DeGeneres has been oddly silent on the subject. The only acknowledgment we’ve seen so far has been a leaked internal letter DeGeneres sent to her crew.
Ellen DeGeneres’s wife, Portia de Rossi, took to Instagram today in order to show support to her wife who has been taking hits to her image for about eleven months now. However, this post seems like a strange move – instead of acknowledging the fact many, many employees have come forward saying the working environment on The Ellen DeGeneres Show is toxic, she seems to be implying it’s all a bunch of lies.
The post’s caption reads “To all our fans . . . we see you. Thank you for your support.” Meanwhile, the image itself says “I stand by Ellen” and then repeats the phrase as a hashtag, followed by “Be kind to one another”. The graphic design crimes in this image are numerous, but we don’t have time to unpack all of that.
The post is followed up by nine different hashtags – three of which are just variations of the phrase #IStandByEllen – which is going to make gaining traction and/or trending topics around her effort difficult. The other interesting hashtag is #StopBotAttacks.
DeGeneres has also been losing fans faster than a sieve holding water these days – so the audience de Rossi is trying to reach is dwindling quite a bit. Let’s walk through all the issues here.
Hashtag about bots
The #StopBotAttacks hashtag is troubling because it’s extremely dismissive of the countless employee accounts of an incredibly unhealthy work environment. Both current and former employees of The Ellen DeGeneres Show have come forward with stories of racism, sexual misconduct, promotions being withheld, and more.
To imply these stories are all somehow from bots created by people, who would supposedly have some kind of vendetta against her wife, is disrespectful, tone deaf, and also implies these people are lying. One Buzzfeed article reports they spoke to over forty employees – so it seems unlikely they’re all lying – not to mention all their stories match up.
Warner Brothers has even begun an internal investigation of The Ellen DeGeneres Show’s production, which has reportedly already found some issues. So playing the victim card in this way just seems embarrassing and ludicrous – a little like shoving your fingers in your ears, closing your eyes, and shout-singing.
You know what isn’t “being kind”? Turing the whole thing into an “us versus them” situation. People have been mad about DeGeneres over the past months because her mantra of “Be kind to one another” seems to be more of a television slogan than a way she lives her life.
If DeGeneres acknowledged this to the public and said she’d try to be better – while a lot of people wouldn’t believe her, it’d be much more well received than silence & this implication everyone is out to get her. Even if it’s made by DeGeneres’s wife instead of herself it feels like an attempt to say everyone is in the wrong – except Ellen DeGeneres.
Thanking the fans who are still supporting Ellen DeGeneres is fine. It’s understandable they’d be grateful for anyone who is still sticking by them at this point. Afterall, no fans means no jobs, and that means no more money to buy multi-million dollar homes to rent to other celebrities.
However, it does sort of create another “us versus them” – this time between fans who are unperturbed by the reports of racism & sexual misconduct and those who are put-off by it.
Rather than doing something to help the situation all Portia de Rossi has done is add gasoline to a raging fire.
The responses to the post made by DeGeneres’s wife were less than supportive. Many saying something along the lines of “I DON’T support Ellen”.
Others asked de Rossi to have some accountability as well as pointing out a number of the things we’ve mentioned in this article. One of our favorite and succinct comments just simply says in all caps, “SHUT UP”.
Very few of the replies to the image showed support – which makes sense since the daytime show has lost almost half its viewership to-date.