You may’ve heard, our favourite Hollywood couple is expanding their beautiful family. And whilst this is the most wonderful news – because hell yes to more versions of Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds on planet Earth! – Blake didn’t exactly share this info with the joy a celebrity baby announcement would usually entail.
The actor, director and philanthropist has confirmed her pregnancy by sharing a series of personal photos of her growing baby bump on Instagram, “so the 11 guys waiting outside” her home will leave her and her three daughters alone.
Reclaiming her power from the paparazzi by posting her own pics? Awesome. But the fact that she even has to do this in the first place because paps and publications have no boundaries?
View this post on Instagram
“You freak me and my kids out,” Blake writes – and she’s not the only one who feels this way.
Game of Thrones actor and mum Sophie Turner shared a blunt message to the paparazzi in 2021 to stop photographing her daughter: “It’s f***ing creepy that grown, old men are taking pictures of a baby without permission,” she posted in her Insta stories at the time.
Supermodel Gigi Hadid shared an open letter last year, asking publications to, at the very least, blur out photos of her daughter: “I can imagine that close or dramatic paparazzi frenzies must be overwhelming and disorienting…it still is as an adult that understands and deals with it often.”
There are countless others including Mindy Kaling, Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard, Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling, Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden who actively choose to protect the identity of their kids and make this crystal clear by not sharing photos of their children’s faces on social media.
So when publications – who know this very fact – still choose to post pics of their kids, it’s important to consider why? Why are they not respecting clear boundaries? Why are they choosing clicks and profit over … the safety and wellbeing of kids?
In Blake’s post, she highlights how important it is to follow respectful celebrity news publications: “Thanks to everyone else for all the love and respect and for continuing to unfollow accounts and publications who share photos of children. You have all the power against them. And thank you to the media who have a ‘No Kids Policy’. You make all the difference.”
The #NoKidsPolicy Blake refers to came about after two distinct events: the first being when Jennifer Garner and Halle Berry championed a bill that was signed into law in California, imposing tougher penalties on photographers who “seriously alarm, annoy, torment or terrorise” children of public figures.
“We’re moms here who are just trying to protect our children. These are little innocent children who didn’t ask to be celebrities. They didn’t ask to be thrown into this game and they don’t have the wherewithal to process what’s happening. We don’t have a law in place to protect them from this,” Halle said in her testimony at the time.
And while the law was a step in the right direction, it didn’t solve the problem entirely.
Enter the second notable event: an essay by Hollywood star and dad Dax Shepard who wrote a piece for Huffpost, shifting the conversation from the publications and the paparazzi to the consumer.
He began an online movement encouraging the consumer to refuse to buy publications that show photos of famous people’s kids without their consent, because “the consumer is the only one who can put an end to this. They are the only ones with real power.”
Some of the publications who’ve adopted the #NoKidsPolicy include Just Jared, People, Entertainment Weekly, Entertainment Tonight and even Perez Hilton, with some exceptions. But clearly that’s not enough.
Blake only shared her pregnancy news because she wanted to protect her three girls from intrusive paparazzi. From packs of strangers, waiting outside their home. From publications who will expose her kids’ identity.
She should be sharing her personal news, if and when she wants to, with joy, like the rest of us. Why do media outlets take this away from celebs? It’s kinda… mean, no?
(Feature Image Credit: Taylor Hill/Getty Images)