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PREACH IT! Justin Bieber, as grounded as he's always been

August 16, 2010 |  4:35 pm
Justin Bieber Justin Bieber is a little man with a taste for revenge on a large scale.

After some kid named Kevin Kristopik apparently hacked into the Twitter account of Bieber’s friend, Bieber retaliated, in a major way: He publicized Kristopik’s phone number. On his own Twitter account. Which -- because it’s Justin Bieber’s Twitter account -- means that Kristopik’s number went out to more than 4.5 million delirious Bieber fans.

Bieber represented Kristopik’s number as his own. The result? An estimated 26,000 texts from people hoping to connect with Bieber, he of the swooshy hair and the feverishly coached swagger -- not, you know, a 15-year-old Michigan teen named Kevin.

Bieber's revenge tweet has since been deleted. Kristopik, meanwhile, has changed his number and shut down his Twitter account.

Whole bunches of people -- probably the same yokels who think flight attendant Steven Slater is a shining champion of the oppressed -- will see Bieber’s actions as justified, an understandable attempt to defend himself and his friends from privacy violations.

Yeah, no.

When you’re a celebrity, there’s a reason you retain neck-snapping publicists and squadrons of lawyers who file their teeth into sharp points. And that reason is Kevin Kristopik. Bieber’s people could ...

Justin Bieber ... have shut down Kristopik with a single phone call. Instead, Bieber, who is 16, wanted the satisfaction of bullying some random kid out in the sticks. And that’s what he got, mostly likely without a single adult telling him that maybe that’s not the wisest way to go about using one’s power.

Kristopik, if he really did hack into an account, should be held accountable for that. But it’s Bieber who needs to be schooled in how to be a better celebrity.

Maybe Bieber’s swagger coach could offer him a few pointers. 

-- Leslie Gornstein

Photos: Justin Bieber performs in Orlando, Fla., top, on Aug. 3, 2010, and in Atlanta at the New Look Foundation's inaugural World Leadership Awards on Aug. 6, 2010. Credit: Joshua C. Cruey / Orlando Sentinel, top; Rick Diamond / Getty Images for Usher's New Look Foundation, left

Related dispatches from the Ministry of Gossip:

Acne treatment spokesmodel Justin Bieber puts his face on the line

Justin Bieber surprises students while one 'lucky' fan gets knocked around like a pinata on Twitter

PREACH IT! Justin Bieber — author? Really?

Justin Bieber to guest star on 'CSI' -- and the evidence points to typecasting

PREACH IT! Another post, another chance for Justin Bieber fans to get all worked up

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