How Social Media has Changed the Concept of Celebrity?


Shown Above: Kim Kardashian

Author: Zafar Rais, CEO, MindShift Interactive

Lives of the rich and the famous are no longer mysterious or inexplicable; they are out in the open for all to consume. In today’s world, being famous means agreeing to give up your privacy to a large extent. Social media has allowed a common person to become the superstar they always looked up to.

Social media and our allied culture have prompted three substantial changes to the word celebrity: Today we see social media platforms such as Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram give normal people an opportunity to gain fame, and they also give closely monitored celebrities an opportunity to connect with fans and air their grievances.

In this day and age of quick communications, the word celebrity has been redefined. Celebrity is no longer reserved for actors, singers, politicians, sports personalities. Celebrity at the most basic level, simply means “being known” among a group of people and having a certain opinion that others look up to.

A celebrity traditionally refers to an exclusive person who has a broad exposure through different forms of conventional media channels like newspapers, movies, etc. The internet then changed the definition of celebrity giving it newer attributes; we witnessed a whole new set of celebrities who became famous by blogging, dancing, acting, etc. We saw the birth of the term “Internet celebrity”. It was the beginning of the era when anyone and everyone had the chance to be known about virtually anything!

Social media has not only changed the face of communication over the years but also helped giving a personality to a face. Earlier we had very little information through interviews, tabloids, newspapers, etc about the celebrities and their personal life. Twitter has been a big game changer in this trend. Facebook has become a platform to talk more about personal life while Twitter has become a platform which is more interactive in order to establish communication with fans without the fear of sharing away all private information.

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The popularity of Justin Bieber is one such example of becoming famous through online presence. Vlogging, fashion blogging, etc have become lucrative careers majorly due to the onset on social media. Brands are also adapting to this new trend and taking the necessary effective approaches for brand management and recall.

Social media has gradually become a significant aspect of our daily lives. It’s leading to the creation of a universal place to create content (media). Most of us have heard stories of people who started blogs, podcasts, or online video channels and gained a following over time. We know an opportunity for anyone to “be known” is available to those who opt to become famous/celebrity. The concept of being a celebrity is has been redefined and thus by default this new age celebrity is now more accessible. The question for all aspiring to be in that category is to figure out efficient ways of using it to our advantage.

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