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No Gangbang at Britney Spears' Court Hearing

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Some say photo agencies are hiring gang members to follow Britney with cameras | Photo by pointnshoot via Flickr

Yesterday's Britney Spears conservatorship hearing was like a ghost town. You see, only lawyers representing both sides of the family were there and in the end, father James Spears' temporary control over her life and estate was extended until at least March 10, allowing him to handle financial matters at the moment such as her taxes.

And since Britney didn't show up, same went for the paparazzi. Showing up a half hour late to the hearing, plenty of seats were available in the court room, it felt kind of odd (is this the right hearing?). Who was there? Yes, there was press -- the real press, the ones interested enough in the real story of Britney, not the "hey, she's driving a car to the grocery store in Studio City, breaking news everybody!"

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The reporters there, from the likes of local TV stations, papers and even the New York Post all compared notes after, double checking details (one reporter was sporting his White House credentials). Many seemed to know each other and there were no feelings of entitlement to the story. This was a friendly scene.

One reporter felt relieved that Britney was not there. He explained that when she's there, it's called a "gangbang," or a media mob mentality that often leaves a few reporters slightly bludgeoned and bloody in the chaos of following the pop star. NY Daily News' Rush & Malloy reports that some on the brit-beat are giving up because it's just getting too dangerous due to photo agenices hiring gang members:

The legion of lensmen has been infiltrated by L.A. gang members -- Crips and Bloods, according to some photo-agency heads. They claim rival agencies are arming the thugs with cameras and sending them out to do battle with the dozens of paps who rubberneck around Hollywood's favorite train wreck.

For one, we at LAist were glad Britney was not there yesterday either.