23 September 2020

The Power of Attention

When I started working on my Instagram, I know attention is expensive. But I had no idea how big it can get.

One of my hobbies is watching award shows opening ceremonies. Of my favourite is Neil Patrick Harris' Tony Awards opening act. Watch it here.

But in this blog post (are these blog posts?) I wanna talk about Ricky Gervais and what he does. Ricky Gervais is a comedian and a writer among many other things. Will discuss this later.

Body of Works

Of the things he does, for some reason he gets invited to host the Golden Globe Awards in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016, and 2020.

He does this in front of a live audience, or at least they make it so. All of these are very funny. But I was a little shocked when I realised how insulting he is to the people. And most of these people are worlds most influential directors, producers and actors.

Why are they listening to him? Instead of getting rid of him, as you'd expect powerful people to be, they invited him again. Why?

Remember how I told you three paragraphs before, he is a writer, among many other things? Well, he also happens to be the creator, writer, director and actor of a show called The office.

Well, its a franchise.

The original show aired on BBC in 2001. The same show was adopted a few times.

  • 2005 The office (US, English)
  • 2006 Le Bureau (France, French)
  • 2010 HaMisrad (Israel. Hebrew)
  • 2006 La Job (Canada, French)
  • 2019 The office (India, Hindi)

Not all listed here are as famous as the original and the US version. That's where the gold is.

In 2019, NBC reclaimed 'The Office' for $100 Million a year for five years.

That's a half a billion-dollar deal.

For office romance documentary show: not too shabby.

According to this news article, Ricky Gervais is worth $130 million.

So. Ricky Gervais is Rich. Streaming services are fighting to get his show on their platform, this is more complex, and he is good at what he does.


When he stands in front of the world's most powerful filmmaker, he gets to say what he wants. His work is his leverage.

What he is and what he has made has a unique audience. A bunch of people who listen to what he says. The Attention. That's his power.

I have heard this before. Co-incidently by another comedian.

Dave Chapelle.

He is about to get the 2019 Mark Twain Prize. He gets on stage lights a cigarette mid-speech.

I want everyone in America right now to look at me. Look at me smoking indoors. I didn't ask anybody I just did it. What are they gonna do? Kick me out before I get the prize now? No [nword], this is called leverage.


That's what Dave Chapelle has. That's what Ricky Gervais has. That's where wealth is.

That's exactly what you get when you build your audience.