"Everyone always thinks that they might be more civilized over there - and maybe the upper crust is," says Dr. Paul Levinson, chairman of the communications and media studies department at Fordham University.
"But the tabloids over there are far more brutal than anything we have over here," he says.
Since arriving in the U.K. earlier this month to appear as a judge on Simon Cowell's hit Brit show "X Factor," Abdul has been the focus of various tabloid accounts, including one that claimed she turned up 8 hours late for work because she was jet-lagged. Another said she was "shocked" when crew members talked to her.
"On 'American Idol' the judges are treated like gods, but on 'X Factor' everyone mucks in," a production source told a London paper.
She was even tweaked for allegedly including a "spiritual adviser" in her entourage "to help her choose what to eat," according to a report in London's Mirror.
A spokeswoman for Abdul branded all the reports as "lies."
Abdul is serving as a judge on her pal Simon Cowell's "American Idol" with-a-twist talent show, "X Factor."
Unlike "Idol," the judges on "X Factor" take an active role in coaching acts. They tend to be less than impartial and frequently draw viewers' venom.
"One of the favorite pastimes over there is ripping apart [famous] people in the tabloids," says Levinson. "Their knives are always keenly sharpened and always ready to cut apart the aristocracy or the media aristocracy," he says.