Avril Lavigne's Awkward Fan Photos Are Going Viral for All the Wrong Reasons


As part of her South American tour, Avril Lavigne recently offered fans in Brazil the chance to meet her in person for the low, low price of $400. Security reportedly informed "Meet-and-Greet" ticket holders that a "no touching" rule was in place. Predictably, the resulting images of a mildly-enthused Lavigne standing at arms-length from her eager fans have gone viral.

The Internet's mockery of the stilted photos has been swift and vicious. "Fans Not Allowed To Touch Avril Lavigne After Spending HUNDREDS For A Special Meet & Greet?!?" Perez Hilton decried in a headline. Another outlet lamented, "Even after you fork out $400 all you get is an awkward photo that proves that you stood in her general vicinity." Most seem to agree that these are the "most awkward meet and greet photos ever," and that for $400, fans deserved more. And by more, they mean more physical contact.

Simply put, people are making fun of a woman for not letting strangers touch her enough.

Image Credit: Instagram

Lavigne's camp fired back on Instagram with images of the star rubbing shoulders with fans, meaning a strict rule was not in effect. But she shouldn't have had to defend herself in the first place. By juxtaposing the whopping cost of meeting the idol with the physical distance she kept from her fans, the media's coverage makes the disturbing implication that after a certain monetary threshold, people are somehow entitled to others' bodies. 

This is only worsened by the fact that many outlets took care to compare Lavigne's fan photos with meet-and-greets featuring Rihanna or Miley Cyrus, both of whom have been shown to more animatedly embrace their fans. Multiple outlets pointed out that Rihanna in particular appears more carefree than Lavigne in her meet and greet pictures, often posing in sexually suggestive manner if not letting fans outright grab her butt or boobs. She has a big smile on her face in almost every shot, and appears to be having a great time.

Image Credit: Facebook

Image Credit: Facebook

Image Credit: Facebook

This is all well and good for Rihanna, but Lavigne is also allowed to do what she wants with her body — even if that means maintaining her personal space. The message inherent to these comparisons is messed up: If you're comfortable getting touchy feely with people you don't know, you're a cool chick. If you're not, you suck. 

Besides, we don't know what's going on behind the scenes in any of these photos. Maybe Lavigne has personal space issues for very specific reasons. The fact that that in 2011 a crazed fan stormed the stage during one of her previous concerts in Brazil might have left her a wee bit less enthusiastic about fan PDA, for example. She wouldn't be alone in her feelings, either; Iggy Azalea recently made headlines for stating that she no longer crowdsurfs because her fans wouldn't stop sexually assaulting her.

But maybe she just doesn't like to be touched by strangers. It's not really our business. Not everyone is comfortable with PDA, and if she wants personal space, she wants personal space. Full stop. She's a singer, not a professional cuddler.