According to a report released today, the world's supply of non-celebrities will be exhausted within the next ten years unless drastic action is taken now. The report, written by the Media Studies department of a respected London college, claims that celebrities are being created at such an alarming rate that they will eventually engulf the planet.
Project leader, Tristan Smythe-Jenkins, is convinced that the tipping point is just around the corner. "In the old days," he told reporters, "only a small number of celebrity vehicles existed. Programmes like 'New Faces' produced some noxious by-products, like Barrymore and the Chuckle Brothers, but the majority of participants quickly returned to their original state of anonymity.
"These days, although the celebrities produced are of an even lower grade than before, TV and the Internet have so many vehicles which run on dross that they never truly disappear. We call it the 'Green Room Effect', whereby they just hang around until someone pays them attention. Meanwhile, an endless stream of reality shows releases new celebrities into the airwaves every single day, depleting resources of unknown people yet more."
But it isn't only the number of vehicles that's causing the problem. Smythe-Jenkins is also concerned about the ease with which a total nobody can become famous.
"It used to be incredibly difficult to acquire celebrity status, but not anymore. Take this year's 'Celebrity Big Brother' for example. The bar has been lowered so much that qualification is possible just by knowing someone who has been on TV. Before long, simply being caught on a Dixons security camera will be enough to secure a series on ITV2.
"On top of everything else, developing countries are demanding the same cheap and dirty entertainment as the West. Even though they number in the billions, without any regulation they'll burn through their supply of non-celebrities in just a few seasons of 'China's Got Talent', and by then it'll be too late.
"Our only hope is to stop making new celebrities and start recycling the old ones. Yes, Bruce Forsyth is reused time and time again, but most are used once and then discarded. No one wants to see Rik Waller back on our screens, but if we don't want our children to grow up with the constant niggle that they've seen everyone somewhere before, sacrifices will have to be made."