Y’all know I can’t stand Biggest Loser and the problems the show creates, so someone’s going to have to help me out with this one:
FC Online Marketing, the reality star’s sponsor, has filed a lawsuit against Costa for breach of contract. Their business agreement required Costa to maintain a certain figure, she represented the online marketing firm as a spokesperson/mascot of sorts; they expected her to stay below a certain weight for press events, photo shoots and whatnot. They hired Costa for a reason–she is a white, blonde lady with conventionally attractive looks…at least while she’s thin.
According to The Daily Mail “FCOM claims that she re-gained ‘far too much weight’ in 2011 for them to continue using her as a brand ambassador – which followed a guest appearance she made that same year on The Biggest Loser where she weighed in at 161lbs, a full 22lbs heavier than in 2009.” FCOM gave Costa $45,000 to use her likeness after she lost 155lbs on The Biggest Loser: Couples 2
While cruel and heartless, the actions of FCOM almost make sense in a vacuum–they were paying her for a specific service that she could no longer fulfill. However, the controversy is not taking place in a vacuum and the context makes FCOM’s choice to sue Costa fully annoying. Last year, TC opened up to ABC News and came out as having and addiction to food, admitting to eating 6,000+ calorie meals at the peak of her addiction. It’s a shame that FCOM is taking legal action rather than showing any concern that their spokesperson has been going through what she seems to consider a relapse. [source]
I’m a capitalist. I understand the business-end of this. But business without a solid connection between the two parties involved… results in mess like this.
I’m also kind of shocked that 22lbs is “far too much weight” to regain when someone’s lose 155lbs. Not that weight gain is to be expected – I mean, it can be if you didn’t lose it in ways that solve what challenges caused you to put it on in the first place – but that 22lbs, in the grand scheme of things, isn’t even 25% of the weight she lost. Maybe because of the perspective I’m coming from, but I look at 22lbs and thing “Oh, 8 weeks.” Not “far too much weight.” Or maybe it’s just that losing 133lbs – the initial 155 that she lost minus the 22 that she gained – is still something to be proud of…and the fact that they’re suing her over it shows that it’s more about what you look like in the end, and not about what you’ve accomplished thus far. I don’t know.
That being said, if so much of your business model is centered around her developing and maintaining her physique, why are you not keeping tabs on her? Providing her with resources? Checking in frequently? Why be scumbags about it and out her in this way with a lawsuit? Why not keep up with her and – y’know, because you’re keeping up with her, you’re seeing this – ask her what’s going on once you spot the weight gain creeping up past 10lbs?
Am I the only person who is really rubbed the wrong way by this?