Time to retire the “Kiss Cam”

Speaking of football game day traditions – retiring the Kiss Cam is long overdue.
If you haven’t seen it – this is a stunt found during timeouts at lots of sporting events where the cameras pan the crowd, looking for couples, finding a man and a woman and encouraging them to kiss, all up on the Jumbotron for everyone to see and cheer.

It’s awkward enough assuming that camera operators have some magic ability to spot people in the crowd who might be a couple.
We don’t know anything about their situation.
We, the people, demand that they kiss!
Kiss for us! Now!

But …

Maybe they’re coworkers, maybe they’re neighbours, maybe they’re brother and sister – maybe they’re strangers. Or maybe they really are a couple and they’re having a bad day, or are embarrassed, or who just don’t want to be on the screen doing something intimate.

Why are we putting randomly selected people on the screen and pressuring them to do something pretty personal like this?
You can see the reluctance a lot of the time.

As if that’s not bad enough, it used to be that after four or five rounds of finding couples to kiss, the cameras would then finish off by cutting to two players on the opposing team.
Ha ha!, the theory apparently went, isn’t that hilarious, the idea that two men would kiss!

Well, no, it’s not. Come on.

At least they don’t usually end with that shot of two players any more, but it is still cringe-inducing watching the cameras pan the stands, always on the lookout for a man and a woman sitting together because a) obviously they must be romantically involved if they’re sitting beside each other, and b) a man and a woman is apparently the only “safe” combination to select.

It’s time to retire this gimmick – it was never funny in the first place and now it’s just awkward and becoming offensive, especially in light of the great work teams are doing with projects like “You Can Play” that encourage everyone of all types to take part in sports.

Lose the Kiss Cam. Please.

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