‘NCIS’: Why Does Cote de Pablo Refuse to Use Social Media?

The cynical among us may guess that Cote de Pablo isn’t on social media because she’s tired of getting asked if Ziva will ever come back to NCIS. Now that we know the answer is yes, we have to consider other reasons you won’t find her on Twitter, Instagram, and other platforms.

Her fans know that the actress is private, not dishing much about her personal life. After she left NCIS, she was initially vague about the reasons, until she later revealed she wasn’t happy with how Ziva was being handled in the scripts.

Of course, there’s no requirement that celebrities have to be on social media. For every Brie Larson who uses it frequently and creatively, there’s a Scarlett Johansson who doesn’t dabble at all. For that matter, NCIS lead Mark Harmon doesn’t use social media either, and Michael Weatherly dropped his not long after being dogged by a sexual harassment scandal.

Why Cote de Pablo says no to social media

Cote de Pablo
Cote de Pablo from NCIS | Eric McCandless/CBS via Getty Images

The actress spoke about her absence from social media not long after she left NCIS in 2013. In an interview with Latina magazine, she said: “I’m not on Facebook. I’m not on Twitter. I know a lot of celebrities who go around complaining how little privacy they have. And then my question to that is always, well, how much of yourself are you putting out there? If you are everywhere, then you’ve sacrificed the very thing that you are complaining about, which is your own privacy.”

In the same interview, she said she simply isn’t one to socialize in public. As she sees it, her private life is just that — private. It isn’t for anyone else except her family and friends.

Cote de Pablo is grateful to her fans

That’s not to say she isn’t grateful for her fans. She did return to NCIS after years of pent-up demand from fans. She did not explicitly say so, but given that she hasn’t worked much in the years since,  it’s quite possible she needed a break.

“It was not an easy decision, not one taken lightly. I feel like I am leaving my family. What I want to say most of all is thank you to the fans and to the people who have been so supportive of me and of the show, who have made the show the great success that it is,” she said.

Cote de Pablo’s ‘NCIS’ co-stars also swear off social media

Harmon enjoyed a long and fruitful career before social media dominated the world, so he feels no particular need to embrace it. Like de Pablo, he prefers to focus on his family and doesn’t want to make fame any more intense than it already is.

“It’s not even a choice. It’s who we are,” he explained to Fox News. “We stay home. A lot. I’m not a Twitter guy or a Facebook guy. Our sons aren’t into that, either.”

Harmon’s wife is Pam Dawber, who saw her own fame on Mork and Mindy and My Sister Sam. Her experience on the latter show cruelly exposed her to the dark side of fame when in 1989, her young co-star Rebecca Schaefer was murdered by a deranged stalker who was easily able to obtain her address. That was long before the dawn of social media, but her case changed laws on how easily one can find personal information. That experience no doubt shapes Dawber, and by extension, Harmon.

Michael Weatherly was active on social media for a time, but he angered fans after he deleted his accounts. Some fans speculated that was because he was trying to keep Ziva’s return a secret. Others pointed out that social media is not an ideal forum when sexual harassment claims are in the picture. His Bull co-star Eliza Dushku made her claims public, and Steven Spielberg’s production company withdrew from the show.

“Although I’m disappointed that Michael has deleted his accounts Twitter + Instagram, I also understand the need he has to step back and enjoy his family and friends,” another fan replied. “It’s up to us to respect his decision and hope for a return soon.”